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Sep 15, 2008 07:41 AM

North 110 Disaster

Six of us went out on Saturday to North 110 for a friend's birthday- we made a reservation and let them know that it was a milestone birthday for our friend. We thought that, given the positive reviews, it would be a good experimental night for a birthday dinner. Wow, what a calamity.

The service was atrocious. It was a somewhat busy night, but the dining room is not the size of a banquet hall...? The waiter took our order and then disappeared for 45 minuites (where he went to is a leprechaun mystery). We asked the hostess to retrieve the manager and the waiter miraculously appeared minutes later to take our order. The manager later appeared and offered to get us an appetizer "on the house." Following the dinner service, the waiter was again slack in tending to the table. Overall, I have often recieved better service at Denny's.

We also felt the food was lacking. Mockingly, we suggested the place be re-named "The Fritter House." We had several appetizers that we thought would be distinct (we had ricotta fritters, croquettes, wings and samon something-or-another), yet each one was presented as a deep-fried fritter and most fritters had the same consistency and very similar tastes. We recieved our entrees (not at the same time, mind you) and two of the entrees were cold (literally), while two of the entrees were too hot. The ribs were okay, the shrimp dishes were overcooked and my steak was overcooked. The side dishes were suprisingly bland. Though, the table did get a complimentary plate of mushroom risotto from the chef that was pretty good. All of the food was very salty: I found myself, literally, drinking a gallon of water after the meal. The did bring a dessert out for our friend- surprise! blueberry fritters- but most of us did not have the heart or stomach to eat it.

The dining room was crowded (I bumped into several people while trying to navigate the room) and we, literally, were covered in a sheen of perspiration throughout the meal.

So.... I doubt, very seriously, that we will ever return. It was sad that our friend, the uber-foodie, had to have a not-so-great experience on his birthday. We consoled ourselves by reiterating that at least we were in good company. I don't know what happened: if our experience was typical or if the dishwasher had taken over the kitchen that night (in the chef's absence) and appointed the groundskeeper to be our waiter... ??? Some of us noticed a private function for 12 going on in the rear of the restaurant... but I feel that if the kitchen and front-of-house is properly staffed, no one should suffer because of a bigger party... ???

Just thought I would share my experience so that others can be wary when checking out this place (if they do)...

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  1. That's a shame. I actually made it for the first time this past Friday and enjoyed very much their barbecue menu. For me, the food was great, although nothing particularly unique. I have not made up my mind if it was worth the $48 per person, but we left full and happy with our experience. Additionally, you can eat for much less there. Our service was strong, but we were one of only 3 tables (that I could see at least).
    Funny enough, I had wondered why North one 10 did not receive more praise on these boards and fully intended to write a review. Has anyone else had experiences similar to QTWO?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Icantread

      I wrote about my experience on this board, just search for North 110. I had a very good experience and the food was incredibly good. I do agree with a few of your points though. Way too many fritters, cramped dining space (but they do what they can, really), and a little on the pricey side (but I expect a discount because of the location and thats probably wrong) I had the barolo shortribs and they were very good. Service was very good and I was there on a Wednesday which was cool because they had a sultry jazz singer in the back who had a great voice and put on a good show. Ive planned to go back but getting that far north isnt easy.

    2. That's too bad - I have not been to North One 10 very often, but none of my experiences have been like you describe either as to service or food quality. The times I've gone service has been attentive, the food generally good if not always knock-your-socks-off. Standout dish I can recall is the roast duck w/ figs, gorgonzola and a sauce laced w/ lavender, which was one of the better duck dishes I've had.

      I would note that it seems a wee bit unfair to have ordered fritters, croquettes and wings and then to complain that everything was deep-fried (I'm suspecting one of the items you had was the salmon croquettes with "damn hot" guava sauce, which I found to be not quite hot enough - maybe I need the "f*cking hot" guava sauce). There's about a dozen apps on the online menu, looks like you happened to choose all of the fried ones.

      Sounds like a (very) off night - maybe they were having trouble managing the restaurant and the private function at the same time, though you are right that diners shouldn't suffer for that.

      1. I think this is one of the most overrated restaurants in the Miami...liquid smoke just does not do it for me, the ambiance is TERRIBLE, and the place is just flat out boring.

        1 Reply
        1. re: luvtoeatwell

          liquid smoke? didn't have a whole lot of anything particularly smoky myself. As to the fact that it is boring. . .I personally get tired of fancy "cutting edge" food which for the most part in Miami, falls short. Sometimes good cooking is all I am looking for rather than pay for a scene.