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Casa Brusco in Eastchester has a Meltdown

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Our party of 4, with reservations, went to Casa Brusco on Friday night, 6/13/2008 for dinner. Our reservation was at 7:30 pm. We were seated around 7:45 and gave our orders at about 8:00. At around 8:45 we realized time had gone by and no appetizers had arrived. We also notice that tables around us were becoming angry and few tables had food served. We asked where our appetizers were and twice after that, servers asked us if we had requested menus. As we sat we also notice that servers constantly were exiting the kitchen with plates of food, but had no idea which tables were supposed to be the lucky recipients and the servers promplty returned to the kitchen. The few people who were served complained that their food was cold. Ultimately our very small appetizers arrived, with an apology from the waiter that the kitchen was in complete disaray and that when he asked for his tables meals he was thrown out of the kitchen. He offered us free desserts, but that offer was never accepted as our entrees never arrived. It got worse after that, The volume of anger rose in the dining area, people were walking out or asking for the check for what they ate so far. At approximately 9:45, two hours into this ordeal, we came to the realization that our entrees were not coming, that what was supposed to be a nice evening wasn't , and that actually we were no longer hungary. We asked for the check for what we ate so far, since 7:45, drinks and a couple of small appetizers and we left. On the way out we voiced our disappointment with the owner, who was just standing there in a state of shock. Although some people were given complimentary bottles of wine we were not one of the lucky few.

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  1. What a nightmare! Obviously they were completely unprepared to deal with the up-tick of patrons after last Sunday's NY Times article. I was going to take someone there for lunch this week, and I'm glad to be dissuaded by your post!

    1. I just spoke to a friend of mine who went to Casa Brusco for Father's Day dinner and she said that it was fantastic. I told her what I had read in attnsteve's post, and she said that they had none of those problems. They were seated promptly, served just as quickly, and the food was excellent. One hopes that the bad experience reported above was an anomaly!

      3 Replies
      1. re: roxlet

        Any comment on portion sizes. Someeone agreed with me not knowing I was only talking about appetizers. They said they went the second week they were open and ordered a pasta dish that came in a bowl that was the size of a side order - and charged her $19-

        1. re: jhopp217

          I have eaten at Casa Brusco at least 8 times since it opened. Heres what i can add to this thread. The portion sizes, have been reduced. The first few months they were open, they were MUCH too large. If you want huge portions, walk across da street to Ciao or the other place. The portions in Casa are a decent and fair size.
          The owner of Casa Brusco comes from a well know family, (not in the restaurant business). For whatever reasons, people love to write negatives things about this restaurant. Casa Brusco is a good restaurant, with fair prices. Just like any newer restaurant, there have been issues with service/servers, but that problem no longer seems to be an issue.

          1. re: baldwinwood

            baldwinwood, all due respect but it seems like yuo're judging the "well known family" and not the restaurant. I know the family, hell, I graduated with the owner and consider him a friend, but my experience there was horrible. I have spoken to people who have eaten there the week it opened and they have confimed that portions were always small.

            Of course I want to like it, and honestly, I will give it a second try, because of who owns it, but honestly, in my first experience there I had bites of three appetizer (there wasn't enough for two bites between the four of us) and two slices of the pizza. I'm going to be generous and say ad 8 cocktails to that, and my share after tip was $140. For 2 mini slices of pizza, three mouthfuls of appetizers and 8 drinks, $140 isn't fairly priced.

            Ciao's food is garbage, so I wouldn't compare anything to them. Although I'd say the pizza at both is the same. As for Gina Marie's, I've never had a bad experience there. Not as good as when it was in Fleetwood, but definitely not bad, and very faily priced when you consider you're getting what amounts to two meals in one.

      2. I have eaten there twice. The first time for lunch and the food was good so I went back for dinner. The portions did get MUCH smaller and I'm not about big plates just good food but this was really small. The pappardelle with duck confit was very good so I had it again. This time was just as good but half the size. I think more of the issue is the front of the house. We were seated and waited at least 5 mins for a server to approach us. He took our drink order and asked our water preference. He then proceeded to pour our tap water. The lighting was low and I realized that my water was green...yes green. I dont know exactly what I had just swallowed but I was "grossed out" for lack of a better word. The server replaced the tap with bottled and apologized. Our drinks arrived about 7 mins later and this had to be the worst martini I have ever had. I think the batender thought that vermouth was the dominant ingredient. Again the waiter apologized and I got wine. Without going on and on, I beleive that there needs to be much more training of the servers and a happy medium on the portion size. I don't know at this point if I would go back again.

        1. Here we are in September, and while the service we received this past Sat. night was a little better than what you describe, it was still not great, to the point of being irksome. Food was fine, portions could have been a bit bigger.