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Tarry Lodge - any recent experiences?

I hate to start a new thread but the old Tarry Lodge thread has over 200 posts and I am sure this would get lost in it. Anyway, I just made dinner reservations at Tarry Lodge and was reading the reviews on OpenTable and some of the recent ones have not been particularly good (some for food and some for service). To be fair, there were more good ones than bad but I am a little concerned that they've slipped. My wife and I are being taken out to dinner and the person asked for a reasonably priced restaurant, so I picked Tarry Lodge because we've enjoyed our meals there in the past, and the person taking us turns out to be a Mario Batali fan so he was thrilled with my choice. But I do not want to be disappointed, nor do I want the person paying for our dinner to be. I know there have always been a few negative reviews for TL here but I saw what I thought was more than usual on OT.

On a related topic, when I made the reservation (for a Tuesday night in October), they did not have anything available for 3 people between 6:15 and 7. If I changed the number of guests to 2 or 4 they had all times available. I'm not sure if it's Tarry Lodge trying to maximize their revenue or OpenTable having some strange booking criteria (I don't know how their system works) but it seems pretty unreasonable to claim that there are no tables available for 3 on a weeknight if they have one available for 4.

Tarry Lodge
18 Mill St, Port Chester, NY 10573

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  1. We eat there once every few weeks, the latest being last week. For me, it doesn't hold up to their places in the city. I just don't think the food or the experience is on par. That said, it is still a very good meal at a decent price. Not much blows my socks off, but I've come not to expect that... instead a very strong meal. The seasonal items have a lot of pumpkin on the menu - as well as a grilled venison dish that was very nice.

    I always enjoy my meal more when we sit at the bar for some reason.

    As for the reservation; I'd either call or just make the reservation for 4 on open table.

    1 Reply
    1. re: BDanahy14

      Thanks for the reply. We ate there a couple of weeks ago and despite relatively low expectations based on what I had read, we had a very nice meal. Services was good, relatively attentive, certainly not bad as many had posted. We did the vegetable appetizer sampler and it was good, not sure I'd spend $18 for it if it were my own money. Salmon carpaccio "salad" was good but also not worth $14 (but glad I tried it when someone else was paying). We split the goat cheese and pistachio pizza and enjoyed it then each had our own pasta. We skipped entrees. Dessert was also good.

      The worst thing about our meal was that when we got there, they tried to put us at a table in the upstairs room kind of crammed in between the wall and another table and it was going to be very unpleasant. sitting there (it would have been much better for 2). I asked if they had something different and they put us at a much better table one level down where the first set of stairs leaves you. It's not like the place was full and there was no excuse for them putting us at such a crappy table. Oh, and I almost fell when I tripped on the rug that ended halfway underneath my chair as we were leaving the first table.

      The reservation time I was able to get on OT was good for us so it was not a big deal. Just strange that they'd limit them like that.

    2. I actually think they've got BETTER than they were.
      Less over slated, and a bit more together.
      Tve pasta is still the star, but it's a pleasant evening at the very least.

      1 Reply
      1. re: weedy

        Was there last week for lunch with a group. We had one of each kind of antipasti platters for the table (seafood, meat, veggies), nice nibbles. I had the pumpkin ravioli in a sage butter sauce. I was told it had riccota and honey in it-- couldn't taste the former, could taste the latter and it was exquisite. Had the peach cobbler for dessert, very delicious, wanted to lick the bowl!

        Attentive service, although the seating for 8 was a bit crowded.

      2. I had a maiden lunch today that was worth the stop. The hostess was accommodating, and the waiter was efficient and not overly friendly. I, personally don't mind old school service, without the smiley "I'm Janie, and I'll be your server today" fake friendliness.

        My friend and I both started with the Salumi Salad, which is chopped romaine, with cheese and cured meats....it was slightly overdressed, but very tasty and enough for two. I took half home, although it probably will be soup by tomorrow. Said friend had the pasta bolognese....tagliatelle perfectly cooked, with a rich, delicious bolognese (not under-sauced, as mentioned by another poster) I tasted it and remarked that it's interesting how something so mild could be so flavorful. Her two courses were on the $19 lunch special.

        I had the Pesce Mista as my main. A $20 appetizer portion was surprisingly generous in size and really very good. Standouts on the plate were the piquillo pepper stuffed with peeketoe crab; perfect Frutti di Mare and Bacala Mantecato, a creamy, whipped salt cod salad. Unfortunately, the White Beans (which come with a few squares of smoked trout) were underdone. The plate is completed with Sardines over what I think was Israeli Cous Cous. Also very tasty.

        I had a nice quartino of red; you could put a gun to my head, and I won't remember what it was....

        We wanted to try desert elsewhere, but the bread joint was closed (? Saturday at 4pm?) and the ice cream place up a few blocks was not worth the calories....tubs of nothing special....My friend wound up grabbing a piece of bread pudding from the Columbian Bakery, but she she said it had too much cinnamon....probably should have tried the Panettone Pudding back at Tarry Lodge.

        I'd go back, if I'm in the area. No, it is not Babbo or Esca, but it is not trying to be....I'd be happy to have it close to home....

        Tarry Lodge
        18 Mill St, Port Chester, NY 10573

        1 Reply
        1. re: Wanda_Gorgonzola

          UPDATE - I met a friend for dinner at TL this past Friday night. We were seated in the terrace at 6:00. It was lovely and relaxing. The dipping oil with really fresh rosemary was great. They need a new bartender - my cocktail was pure juice. we split the guanciale pizza...good but I don't get the rave. The vegetable misto appetizer was a generous portion: standouts were farro with ricotta salada...the saltiness was balanced by the sweet eggplant caponata and the sweet roasted red peppers which had a slight vinegary (good) taste. The beets were outstanding - fresh white beets in a marinade. For dessert we had biscotti and pignoli cookies - very generous serving. At $48 pp including tax and tip, I would go back. The service was good.

        2. I'd like to know more about the salmon carpaccio. We definitely notice an "underdressed" pasta trend there.

          4 Replies
          1. re: eatermom

            Had an awful dinner recently~ very disappointed

            1. re: apples

              Yep, were there for mom's 60th birthday. When reserving, asked for a table upstairs (not on the second floor between kitchen and register) It was a Monday and the (older) guy at the door (who was he and where was the nice hostess?) wanted to seat us downstairs so I reminded him we'd asked for upstairs. He sent a girl to check and she then took us to a table between the kitchen and register, the busy waiter/busboy route. Since it was a special occasion, I wanted to sit in a quieter area and asked her. The old guy came rushing upstairs, gave us a dirty look (meanwhile we're milling about the staircase being in everyone's way) and finally *lets* us have a table where we had originally requested to be seated. This was on a Monday night, mind you and the restaurant was only half full! I don't know who that guy is, but he acted like a major a**hole to us. Service was OK, it was hard to get a hold of the waitress who seemed overwhelmed.

              This is the second time we've been to Tarry Lodge and we won't be coming back. I don't appreciate getting "attitude" when I go out to eat - they're in business of providing a service to me, not the other way around.

              Tarry Lodge
              18 Mill St, Port Chester, NY 10573

              1. re: TatyanaG

                I don't understand what it is about them and insisting on giving out crappy tables on nights when they're not busy. I just reread my post here from last October and was reminded that they had initially put us at a bad table as well, also on a weeknight.

            2. re: eatermom

              I had the salmon carpaccio when I ate there last year and it was OK but I wasn't all that impressed. I wouldn't order it if I were paying.

            3. Ate there recently on a Sat night w/ 8 people and we had great food and great service. We did have an 8:45 reservation b/c when the a couple joined after the original res had been made, we had to eat later. I ate there again recently as 2 on Tues night and while the food was still very good, I was very unimpressed w/ the service. Our server was inattentive and it took asking 3 times after making our drink order to get anything. It wasn't even a particularly busy night. I'd go back, but really would like to service get with the program a bit better.

              1. I'm done with the Tarry Lodge. We've been there at least 5 times and each time the food is hit and miss. Some things are great...others are bland.

                But, the reason that I will not return is simply the service....we've NEVER had a good experience!! Each time we have felt rushed....simple as that.

                After each trip I promised that I wouldn't return, but always felt: I bet if we just go in and get a pizza and a beer or glass of wine it would be OK. (I do like their guancale and truffle pizza) So, we went last night at around 6:30 and got a table for 2 (right behind the hostess station and coat check) We ordered the mixed vegetable appetizer, I got a beer and my wife a Prosecco. We were still eating the veggies and as I looked up, the bus boy was hovering a few feet away with our entrees....the pizza and the octopus salad. Of course our entrees wouldn't fit on the small table with the appetizer, so we had that removed.

                Side note....when my wife ordered the octopus (which was just OK) the waitress told her that the portion was small and asked if she would like something else. We found that with the mixed veggies, the pizza and the octopus that we had too much food!!

                And although they have a nice small choice of draft beers, I was finishing my first glass with the appetizer. I ordered another before my pizza came. It took about 15 minutes for me to get the second and I was mostly done eating the pizza.

                So....all in all: never going back. And I live in PC...and could walk there! Sorry!

                Tarry Lodge
                18 Mill St, Port Chester, NY 10573

                10 Replies
                1. re: toppom

                  we always just sit at bar and get pizzas and sides. always happy at bar. hate it whenever we ate at tables. now to avoid the crowds we just eat pizzas at jt straws. not for ambience but just pizza it's one of the top pies in westchester. no hype just damn good pies. there other bar bar food is ok. pizza stellar.

                  1. re: cubanat

                    cubanat: totally agree!! I posted here about J.T. Straw's:


                    The bar at Tarry was packed, otherwise we would have opted for it. I think I've had my last pizza there....I frequent J.T. Straw's almost weekly.

                    1. re: toppom

                      Oh and the service at JT Straws is always friendly & laid back. kitchen cranks out the food though. never a long wait if any. maybe we should have lept it a secret...dang!

                      1. re: cubanat

                        JT Straw's has the worst pizza and it's unfriendly and no one should go there, ever. (In support of Cubanat's suggestion that those of us in the know about it being pretty much the best pizza around should keep this place a secret!)

                        1. re: Mrs.Sean

                          Yeah! Like she says!! Don't ever even try it!!

                            1. re: Elisa515

                              Yep, Elisa. That'll teach me to attempt humor! I was absolutely knocked sideways by how great the pizza was. I agree that we should keep it a secret!

                              1. re: Elisa515

                                yes E thanks!! i read it to quickly!!

                    2. re: toppom

                      Had dinner there this past Saturday night. Sat in the bar area which was crowded but fine. Appetizers were the smoked trout, octopus and the salad with white beans. All were good but the octopus portion was small. I then had the Branzino and roasted cauliflower side. Both were full of flavor. Food is good, not great but all in all a fun night.

                    3. I'm a Batali fan, yet I found the food here quite unremarkable. There are better places in the area for pizza. So many equate higher prices and hype with higher quality. Not here.