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Feb 20, 2009 03:47 AM

Landing Zone-CT, anyone been?

Holler my fellow C'Hounds--
My coworkers were recommending The Landing Zone in Harwinton, CT yesterday and I was shocked to find that no one has written about it on this site.

I googled it anyway and on another site I encountered some really scary reviews from late 2008 that indicated that the owner has flipped out on some customers in the past.

So...what can you tell me about this place? Is the food good? Is the owner nuts?

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  1. I am glad you posted this...I was hoping someone would give a recent review; I have always heard great things about their menu

    1. I believe the word for Landing Zone is idiosyncratic. It's a fun and funky joint that smells great. It has a ton of beers and a huge menu.

      But the best service I ever had there was lousy so we factor that in when we go. Don't go if you want to be in and out in a hurry. Once they wouldn't seat the four of us at the last open table because it had six chairs. I said, "Let me get this straight, you are making us wait on the off chance that a party of six will arrive?" She said. "Yeah" I said, "That's the stupidest thing ever heard off." No party of 6 ever came.

      It's been a couple of years since I've been, but not for lack of trying. The last time we showed up on a Sunday afternoon but they had closed hours early for no apparent reason. The time before that, the power was knocked out.

      My only meeting with the owner came once when the food was ready and the waitress had vanished so he delivered the meals. He seemed nice enough. I don't think he likes it when you ask for changes to the recipes, take it or leave it is the attitude. There is note in the menu saying as much.

      I liked the cajun popcorn, the catfish sandwich and the ribs are pretty good. Good burgers, too. It seems like a one-man show so you get the good and bad of such an operation.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Waquoit

        We were just there for lunch and Waquoit hit the nail on the head. I like the roasted vegetables sandwich. Burgers and fries (potato or sweet potato ) are great. But service is spotty. There was a big hand written sign (diatribe) about not to seating yourself. Airport is closed so the fly-in dinner idea is kaput. The menu is extensive, including some exotic items.

        1. re: SlowFood3

          I really liked it when we went this past summer. It is a little hole in the wall and really in the middle of no where but that just adds to its charm. The food was very impressive and well cooked. We tried the alligator which was good but, honestly, tasted like chicken so I wouldn't do it again. The service was good although we were a party of 8 and they sat us at a table for 6. We didn't think much of it and when the last 2 of our friends arrived we just picked up the table next to us to bring it closer. Well, that was the plan anyway. The tables unfortunately are all bolted to the floor. So, our friends had to sit a little away from us but it all worked out and we had a great time.

          1. re: acervoni

            its been a couple of years since I've been there but all i can remember about the place was how rude the waitress/hostess was. we stood and waited for quite a long time for a table, even though there were plenty open. The waitress was alone and apparently you cant seat yourself because we asked because my friend had back problems.. she didn't like that too much. Despite the wait and strange behavior we stayed, but I cant really remember the food, only that it reminded me of something like Frankie's but not as good.

      2. i have always loved the landing's a small hole-in-the-wall place...yeah, maybe service isn't the best, but the food and ambience makes up for it...i'm in the restaurant business myself and love the place

        1 Reply
        1. re: christiane314

          I think that's the bottom line, christiane. It's a cool place and a good time and I try to eat there when I am in the area.

        2. I was reading up, out of curiosity, and things are said like, "Get over the waitstaff, and it is the absolute best restaurant." and "the owner will go off on you if you seat yourself" or several patrons were blamed, by the owner/cook for getting the order wrong (not him or the waitress)! Who wants to be cursed at for someone else's mistake? I don't think I want to tempt fate by going there. The chairs are not bolted down.

          1. I just went to the LZ tonight. From the time my wife and I walked in the door, till the time we left, it was a great experience. The food was awesome, the service was spot on, and the beers were served up fresh and cold. Cajun Joe was a gracious host, and the wait staff was on top of their game.
            Plan on spending a few minutes perusing the menu, tho'. We sampled several appetizers, and enjoyed every one. (Try the hot and smoky wings, medium sawdust!). We plan on going back again soon.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mgnx

              I want to second the motion. I went to the LZ a few weeks back mostly because of this thread. It was as good as ever. The service was fine and the cajun popcorn (crawfish pieces) is awesome, something you can't find around here.