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Underwhelmed

d
drbbaldwin Jun 1, 2010 12:40 PM

We were underwhelmed by Restaurant August’s food and service. Not quite up to what we expected from New Orleans' "best restaurant." Amuse bouche - outstanding. Fennel soup and pork belly 1st courses - very good. Rest of meal - ho hum. Husband ordered 4 course tasting menu with wine pairings. Wine for 2nd course didn't arrive until he was almost finished. Wine listed on menu for 3rd course was replaced by another without our knowledge or consent. Waiter said "they ran out." What??!! Very noisy. Would probably not go back. On the other hand, NOLA was fantastic.

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Restaurant August
301 Tchoupitoulas Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

  1. p
    piglet3000 Jun 1, 2010 01:51 PM

    Agree. Completely. We did that same wine pairing/dinner thing and I barely remember anything about it. It was good, the room is beautiful, but no more special than any swanky place in any large American city. I can, however, recall almost every single meal I have had at Liuzza's or Coop's or Frankie & Johnnys!!!! I guess I am glad we went and experienced it, but I would certainly never tell anyone it had to be on their list.
    I've never been to Stella but I feel like it would be similar; it looks SO stuffy in there and it's just not what I want out of a New Orleans restaurant.

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    Liuzza's Restaurant & Bar
    3636 Bienville St, New Orleans, LA 70119

    1. g
      gastrotect Jun 1, 2010 02:06 PM

      Wow, my tasting course experience was the polar opposite. My girlfriend and I did the 7 course degustation with wine and every glass of wine came on time and was as good as advertised. As for the food, well, I consider it the best meal I've ever had. Different strokes I suppose? Or maybe an unlucky night for you? Either way, sorry to hear you weren't impressed.

      1. m
        midcity Jun 1, 2010 08:39 PM

        This is the second or third negative [or at least ambivalent] review I've seen of August on here lately. Until recently, everyone seemed thrilled. Wonder if I should start recommending other places to out-of-town friends looking for a splurge night.

        1 Reply
        1. re: midcity
          j
          JazzyB Jun 2, 2010 06:39 AM

          I think it all depends on the type of experience one seeks and the individual's palate. Not every place is for everyone.

        2. m
          mbc1217 Jun 2, 2010 05:46 PM

          I'm not glad that you didn't have a perfect experience, but I'm glad we are not the only ones that this happened to - my husband and I were down after Christmas for a night and chose August for our one dinner. While the food was superb overall, our service was spotty as well, with the wine coming later and later as the night went on, and our final glass of wine did not appear until our dessert had completely melted. It really diminished our experience.

          1. n
            newyorkgirl Jun 4, 2010 06:23 PM

            Wow, I can't believe y'all are talking about the same restaurant that I've been to. I honestly can't recall a time when the food wasn't exciting and delicious. I always know the food will surpass all my expectations in taste and presentation. The service has always been impeccable but yet the staff also makes me feel very much welcome and at home. I would never hesitate in sending anyone there for lunch or dinner.

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            Restaurant August
            301 Tchoupitoulas Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

            1. Bill Hunt Jun 4, 2010 07:02 PM

              Sorry to hear this. It almost sounds like the wine service has reverted to what we experienced, but that was at least one sommelier ago, and I had been informed, by great sources, that the wine service had been greatly improved. Maybe not?

              As for the food on the full tasting menu, there were some just very good dishes, but nothing below that, and most were excellent to outstanding.

              My one complaint, voiced in my review here, was that the wine pairings were weak, at the very best, and out of sync in most courses - glad that we retain our wines as long as is possible and often have 12 glasses going, throughout the meal.

              As for the noise, that surprises me. We dined in the "front" dining area, right against the River-side wall, and the dining room was full, as was the bar, and the "wine room" not that far from us. I hate noise in restaurants, and August was very quiet, with ladies and gentlemen speaking in conversational tones. It was anything but noisy, and I believe that I even commented on this aspect. Not sure what happened in your case.

              Now, on a later trip, we dined at MiLa, and there was a party of about 8 a room away from us. They were horribly over the top, and I felt sad for the 3 folk at the 4-top closer to them, than we were. We could not hear at our table, and we were easily 15 feet from that 4-top, and 25 feet from the party, in the other room. They screamed, shouted, and laughed in an unbelievable fashion. I have seen such diners removed, for like behavior, but that did not happen at MiLa. I commented on the horrible noise level, and most replies were that it was not normally like that - rather quiet and somewhat staid. I like quiet and staid. I wish to always be able to converse with my guests in a conversational tone, and not have to project to the "back tables," as I can do..

              Sorry to hear of the bad elements at August. We were impressed, with reservations (not the ones that you make on OpenTable), and I had been assured that those had been handled. Maybe someone backslid?

              I hope to give them another try in Oct., and will report.

              Thanks for taking the time to review,

              Hunt

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