Any reviews of Blackbird in Collingswood, NJ?
I have started to hear a bit of buzz about Blackbird Dining Establishment in Collingswood, NJ. I was unable to find any substantial postings. Mrs. Etcetera is planning to take me here for birthday dinner. Anyone care to share their opinions/experiences?
Craig LeBan gave it an 'excellent' in a review in the Sunday Philadelphia Inquirer a few weeks ago.. I'm sure you could go to the Inquirer on-line and read the review.
I haven't been yet, but am looking forward to it.
Just got back from a fun night of visiting with out of town friends. We took them to Blackbird in Collingswood, NJ for SJ Restaurant Week. Boy, was that a mistake.
We have visited Blackbird on quite a few occasions. While their food and service tend to stand out from the normal "Jersey" fare, the care and commitment to "regulars" does not.
Chef Alex Capasso (who has never once been in the kitchen cooking while we were there) lends a cool, almost cold vibe to the customers he has wanting to send praise. God knows who is actually cooking your food!
We sat down at approx. 6pm (after waiting for a table to be reset) and waited a good 10 minutes before being greeted by our waiter. When he finally came, he seemed hurried and distressed, and only offered us "tap" water, as when usually we are given a bottle. He introduced himself and said he would answer our questions in a few minutes, then disappeared for at least a 1/4 an hour. When he came back, he simply asked, "Are you ready?". When our dear friend Louise asked him a question about the additions to the menu, he told her, "They are upsells". Having been in the restaurant business for 20 years, we were appalled by that BOH term. Nevertheless, we ordered.
The Gnocchi are undeniably light and delicious here. Nothing bad can be said about them! The creamy tomato sauce is enough to make you search your basement for Grandmom's recipe.
However, the Chicken Wontons seemed overly crisp, and the filling hard. The Veg Fried rice was waaaay too salty for anyone's palate. The Lasagna they are serving falls short, due to over cooked eggplant.
There are only 2 offerings for dessert, which are all too common; Rice pudding and Apple Tart. Both are dissapointing.
On Wednesday we will be taking our friend from out of town to Casona, a gorgeous Cuban place to make up for the embarrassment we had tonight.
Service there is OK. It doesn't match Blackbird's service (excluding tonight) but their menu will be much more creative, hopefully...
My wife got a hold of what I wrote and was none too pleased with it. Service there is usually very good and the food delicious. I just meant to say that as far as restaurant week is concerned, Blackbird is not the best choice.
Because the prices are so low for the amount and quality of food, it is usually jam packed and the service hurried.
Enjoy Chef Cappassos wonderful fare on a normal day of the week. A quiet Sunday night dinner is always nice and quiet.
We have never had a bad meal there. Our experience last night just fell short of the norm, due to the volume. Our waiter was obviously handling 5 or 6 tables which made the service suffer. We have had this waiter before, and he is always excellent, professional, and friendly.
So forgive and ignore my previous post. Blackbird is still our favorite restaurant in the Tri-state area, and will continue to be for a long time to come!