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East Cafe, Georgetown, Connecticut - really renovating? or closed for good??

h
hungrykids Oct 28, 2010 04:17 PM

A sign on the door at East Cafe in Georgetown says "closed - kitchen renovation." However there is nothing that indicates a potential re-open date. My neighbor thinks they have gone out of business...but I'm hoping they really will re-open, as it was our local go-to place for dinner on a fairly regular basis.

Anyone know anything???

  1. j
    jvaum Oct 28, 2010 04:43 PM

    The owners are neighbors of ours and jog past our house often. We go there all the time, at least once a week, and I haven't heard a thing. I will try to ask the lady who usually is seen behind the register when I see her. Last week when we went she did say that her credit card machine was down and that they were only taking cash...maybe that was a sign??? It would be a loss to the neighborhood that's for sure.

    3 Replies
    1. re: jvaum
      h
      hungrykids Oct 28, 2010 05:25 PM

      I still have leftovers in the fridge, so we were there less than a week ago (I hope). She didn't say anything to us, and we're such frequent customers that if we vary from our usual order she asks what's wrong... Yes, it will be a BIG loss if they are closed. I'll keep my fingers crossed for good news from you!

      1. re: hungrykids
        j
        jvaum Oct 30, 2010 06:33 AM

        We ordered very often as well. It's pretty bad when you don't have to identify yourself by your phone number and they know you anyway! Our order was pretty similar from week to week so she would always know when I had company when I ordered things other than the regular selection. Wonder if it has anything to do with that new Chinese restaurant opening by Fatima? We got a menu from them and it is almost identical to East Cafe. Will let you know when I see the owner.

        1. re: jvaum
          h
          hungrykids Oct 30, 2010 07:52 AM

          The new place (Ten) is the sister restaurant to one in Norwalk (can't remember the name). The owners live in Wilton. My S.O. has enjoyed lunch from Ten twice since they opened (delivered to school - the owners' daughter is a student there) and said both times the food was good.

          But Ten has only been open a few short weeks, so I can't believe that could have already had an impact on East.

          Still hoping for good news from you....

    2. j
      jvaum Nov 18, 2010 01:27 PM

      Good news...they hope to reopen this Saturday with their newly renovated kitchen!

      4 Replies
      1. re: jvaum
        h
        hungrykids Nov 18, 2010 05:07 PM

        HOORAY and hallelujah! My SO picked up dinner at Ten yesterday and brought it home, since we thought the East option was a goner... The egg rolls were doughy instead of crisp on the outside, the scallion pancakes slightly better but still too thick...and the go-to favorites for the hungry kids (General Tsao's and Pad Thai) both turned out to be way too spicy - which we didn't anticipate... I wasn't overly impressed and am delighted delighted delighted to hear that there's hope on the immediate horizon.

        Thanks for the detective work! See you Saturday at East? LOL

        1. re: hungrykids
          j
          jvaum Nov 19, 2010 02:27 AM

          Agreed. Did take out from Ten a few times since it is on my way home from work and kids not impressed. Daughter can live on chicken fried rice and thought it was way too gummy from there. Son thought the spice on the chicken and broccoli tasted off. So Saturday night it is at East Cafe.

          1. re: jvaum
            j
            jvaum Nov 20, 2010 05:27 PM

            Aaaaaargh! What a disappointment, So we go to call in our order and no one picks up the phone after about 10 rings. Since it is so close we decided to go in person, place our order and then do some grocery shopping next door. The atmosphere was total chaos. None of the same people there and everyone looked pretty disgruntled. The man at the register just let the phone ring and ring while he tried to check out a few people. I was still waiting to place my order when a woman came in with her food she had just picked up for take out. She was returning it for a refund! She whispered to me not to order (that wasn't you hungry kids was it?) None of the few tables that were filled had food on them and the owner was trying to convince this other customer to wait while he corrected his takeout order. I cut my losses and left. We went to Marcus Dairy and then went to the mall. I haven't seen my neighbor since this all happened. Maybe it was someone else's turn in the family to take over. At this rate, it won't be there long.

            -----
            Marcus Dairy Restaurant
            5 Sugar Hollow Rd, Danbury, CT 06810

            1. re: jvaum
              h
              hungrykids Nov 21, 2010 05:23 PM

              I missed our "virtual date" last night (forgot that the hungry kids have social schedules these days, so I was on chauffer duty in the Federal Rd neighborhood while my SO went to Danbury with the other one). I spent the day at a conference in Brooklyn, with no internet access, so I didn't see your post before now. On the way home - starving - I stopped at East to order myself some dinner.

              So here's what I learned:
              New owners...new staff...new chef...
              They will be closed this week and will re-open next weekend with a new menu.
              No idea if they will also have a new name.
              Still "Asian Fusion" (according to the guy at the register who appears to be the new owner, although he did not identify himself that way).

              Since I was starving, and curious, I ordered the chicken pad thai, figuring it was a pretty solid staple and I would be able to compare.

              It wasn't bad, but it was different. (Not the best I've ever had but way better than Ritz Asia, which we HATED, and not spicy like the pad thai we had from Ten earlier in the week.)

              Guess the verdict is still out. I think maybe they tried to squeeze some business this weekend and opened sooner than they were ready. I'm willing to give them another try once they really get going - and I hope hope hope it's good, since it's so convenient...

      2. l
        lastcardjb Dec 1, 2010 11:47 AM

        I was equally surprised at how bad the food was. No crunchy noodles, asked for the thai red curry soup and they asked me what was in it (thats when i was informed the menu had changed even though its still up on the web). I ordered the Tom Yan Gung soup and Thai red curry beef.
        Soup was passable, harsh, red curry had about ten pieces of beef, cherry tomatoes (whole) and a few pieces of green pepper and sliced onion. Meager at best. What happened ? Soemone should give these guys a wake up call. I asked for a few pieces of steamed Tofu in the curry, told it would have to be fried and he would charge me an extra $ 1.00.
        Is this a front for another business because as a restaurant it sucked.

        -----
        Yan's Cafe
        217 Lewis St, Lynn, MA 01902

        East Cafe
        920 Danbury Rd Ste 2, Wilton, CT 06897

        2 Replies
        1. re: lastcardjb
          j
          jvaum Dec 1, 2010 05:10 PM

          Such a shame. Was our go to place since it is so close to home . Haven't tried them again since the disaster from a couple of Saturdays ago. Haven't seen the lady who used to be behind the register jogging on my street either. Something tells me that they must have moved away or something. Thanks for your input though...were else do you go around here for chinese/thai?

          1. re: lastcardjb
            l
            Littleriver Dec 5, 2010 09:21 AM

            Went last night for the 1st time since the reopen. Ordered our usual - spicy mango pork an chicken broccoli - it vista me $3.00 more - I usually pay $21 and the food was less than acceptable . The pork was sucking in something gluey and the chicken had go much garlic my husband did not finish it! We will not go back. It was our favorite take out on Friday night! Too bad. I asked them where the lady at the counter and got as a reply " new management". Not really friendly either. It should be close soon! Too bad.

          2. h
            hungrykids Dec 9, 2010 01:08 PM

            Last night there was an official notice posted at the restaurant saying it was closed by order of the Wilton Board of Health...

            3 Replies
            1. re: hungrykids
              j
              jvaum Dec 10, 2010 02:25 AM

              Yikes!!! Out of desperation I ordered chicken lo mein the other night for DD. It was the most bizarre lo mein ever. Super dark in color (too much soy sauce) and overloaded w/ sesame oil. She hardly touched it. The new menu was available for taking but I guess I won't be using it. It's a blessing really that they are shut down. Something just wasn't right about the place and the new owners. Thanks for the update.

              1. re: jvaum
                j
                jvaum Dec 11, 2010 03:52 AM

                Went grocery shopping last night next door to see East Cafe's sign a blazin'. Must have cleaned up the offenses pretty fast. What do you make of that? Couldn't see if anyone inside there and certainly did not go in!

                1. re: jvaum
                  h
                  hungrykids Dec 11, 2010 04:56 AM

                  SO bizarre... although when I first heard about the sign on the door, I wondered if it was less of a "shut down by order of..." and more of a "didn't get everything in place in time to open" kind of message from the Bd of Health (who probably don't have lots of different signs!). But I think I'll wait to see if anyone in the neighborhood starts complimenting the food before I go back...our combined bad experiences were more than enough to scare me off for awhile.

            2. m
              mrsfurious Dec 30, 2010 06:21 AM

              Agree with all the other disgruntled posts. Connie and Co. of the original East Cafe are gone and have been replace with some very confused new staff. Placed our usual order from the old menu and the food we received was inedible! We actually threw it away! Everything was in some version of a soupy brown or orange-sauce straight out of a La Choy can, the dumplings were flaccid, the scallion pancakes must have been frozen. A travesty. Now we are driving down to Hunan Cafe in Wilton Center. Quite a loss for the neighborhood.

              -----
              East Cafe
              920 Danbury Rd Ste 2, Wilton, CT 06897

              1 Reply
              1. re: mrsfurious
                h
                hungrykids Dec 30, 2010 05:20 PM

                so maybe the "good" news is that they won't last long and perhaps the next iteration will be decent (i won't say better since ANYTHING would be better than the dreck they're serving).

                fingers crossed for a quick turnover...

              2. m
                mrsfurious May 16, 2011 11:31 AM

                The menu seems to have changed once again (as of April, 2011), but I am reluctant to see if things have gotten any better. Does anyone have any info on the latest incarnation of the "New East Cafe/"

                2 Replies
                1. re: mrsfurious
                  h
                  hungrykids May 16, 2011 06:21 PM

                  Afraid to find out!

                  I was at Caraluzzi's a few weeks ago and some man was handing out the new menus to shoppers on the sidewalk. I said thanks but no thanks.

                  Part of me feels bad passing judgment on the latest incarnation (new owners? new chef? or just new menu??) without trying it, but, you know, "once burned, twice shy."

                  Maybe someone else can be the guinea pig this time....

                  1. re: hungrykids
                    m
                    mrsfurious Sep 26, 2011 06:37 AM

                    Well, I took a chance with the kids and sampled the "new" menu and sadly, everything was dismal. Steamed tofu and veg was passable, but the sauce inedible. Chicken and mixed veg was just yuck. In addition, service was quite weird--I felt like a pushy mom was serving me: "only one drink?", etc. She pushed a fancy Japanese soda on my kids and I relented only to find it cost $3.50! The atmosphere was depressing too. My husband just shakes his head at my giving it another chance. This was the last time. Back to our standby, Hunan Cafe in Wilton.

                2. h
                  hungrykids Oct 16, 2011 11:56 AM

                  no one following this thread will be surprised to hear that yesterday i pulled into Caraluzzi's parking lot and saw a "CLOSED" sign in the window of the latest version of East Cafe. as reported here, it was pretty lousy, so no loss to the neighborhood (IMHO).

                  anyone know anything about the future of the space? i'm hoping we'll get something good, as we are truly missing the "old" East.

                  i hear the supermarket is putting a liquor store into the space formerly occupied by Yankee Doodle - not sure what the means in terms of the restaurant space, if anything....

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: hungrykids
                    j
                    jvaum Oct 19, 2011 04:14 AM

                    Not at all surprised. I had read in Fairfield County Business Journal that Caraluzzi's had plans to significantly expand their store into adjacent spaces and also do a new parking lot rerouting some of the flow and improving the overall design of the traffic pattern which can be awkward. Not sure what would have to happen to the cleaners which sits in between but time will tell. As far as Chinese takeout, we continue to scrounge and pick it up from other places here and there. Never did give "East" another try. Did you notice the work being done on the orange building up the street just before Rt. 102? Maybe another restaurant opening there? Anyone know about that?

                    1. re: jvaum
                      h
                      hungrykids Oct 24, 2011 05:35 PM

                      talk about hyperlocal....this thread is so specific now i think jvaum and i should just meet in the parking lot at caraluzzis and discuss it in person....

                      but in case anyone else is interested, here's the latest 411 (which is technically OT because there's still no restaurant news)

                      caraluzzis is taking over part of the former Yankee Doodle space for their expansion. the other part of the YD space will be an expansion by the cleaners (as per the owner, who answered my husband's questions this afternoon). the cleaners may start doing their pressing on site (presently they send it out to the owner's sister off site) or they may have tailoring, or both.

                      still no news on the former East site, but it sounds like it is remaining available to someone looking to continue it as a restaurant.

                      1. re: hungrykids
                        j
                        jvaum Oct 25, 2011 05:45 AM

                        Ok hungrykids you are on...lets agree to meet at whatever new restaurant moves into the space! I'm sure once one of sees any action there we'll post on this board. Looking into the glass of the old "East" it appears to be completely stripped of everything. Even the flooring has been ripped up. Did you notice that the place by the old Soup Alley reopened under an Asian Fusion place? I don't think that the China Ten place ever caught on. Probably same menu and all just a different name.

                        -----
                        Soup Alley
                        45 N Main St, Norwalk, CT 06854

                        1. re: jvaum
                          h
                          hungrykids Oct 25, 2011 06:55 AM

                          Yes, the "new" Asian Fusion place is same owner as China Ten but they did make some changes to the menu. (One of the owners is the parent of one of my so's former students.). I haven't been there yet but that's what we've been told...

                          I also see that the former restaurant near the train station is being renovated (currently the orange building) so maybe we'll get lucky and something good will go in there...and we're getting a new coffee shop at the corner of 102 and 7 (Tusk & Co.?). I only drink Starbucks Chai, so no help for me.

                          When "the space formerly known as East" reopens, yes, let's definitely make a plan!

                  2. b
                    BrownCow12 Jul 11, 2012 05:49 PM

                    East Cafe is now totally gone and Chase Bank has taken their space. Just what Georgetown needs, another bank. So no Chinese restaurant in Georgetown. East Cafe basically died when they limited their menu from the 150+ items like a regular Chinese restauant. Their take out business was unbelievable when they had a full menu........If only another Chinese restaurant with a full 150+ choice menu would take over the Georgetown Saloon building with 2-3 dedicated parking spaces for take out orders only!!! Life would be great in Georgetown!!

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