People's Kitchen in Worcester
Thoughts? Has anyone been?
I went once about 6 months ago and thought it was pretty decent. Not too expensive. Menu not too extensive (good thing) and well executed. Ambiance was nice.....little separate rooms, although the initial room they wanted to seat us in reeked of cigar. Almost *too* quiet (no music playing at all?). I may be going back next week, so I was wondering if there were any opinions out there???
Here's my report.
I really want to like this place. Very cool space, nice folks, trying to do good things. My cosmopolitan was very good, as were the draft beers. However, the meal fell short in several respects.
We started with the Chef's Cheese and charcuterie board. I was going to put together my own selections, but we were quite busy talking and I figured I'd let them choose. Big mistake. 2/3 cheeses were smoked, and the other was a habanero cheddar. Very unbalanced selection, particularly since they boast a few nice goats and blues. I don't eat meat, but one of the meats offered was a tongue that really looked awful (this is coming from someone who *LOVED* tongue in her carnivore days). It was grey and nasty looking with dried up bits of fat on it.....yuck! Those that sampled it didn't care for it, despite their claims of enjoying other tongue preparations. A beet and goat cheese salad was fine, although could have used a bit more goat cheese. A mushroom soup was very good (I have had other excellent soups there--roasted cauliflower maybe?).
For entrees, 2 of us had a Mahi wrapped in savoy. This dish was a mess. The cabbage was transformed into a tough, nearly inedible barrier to a lovely piece of fish. However, accompanying sauces, mango, cucumber and other veggies didn't work and detracted from the fish's delicate flavor. The "polenta crouton" sides had no polenta flavor whatsoever, and tasted like fried starchballs. Cedar roasted salmons were acceptable, although some people mentioned the fish was overcooked.
I mentioned that my dish just didn't work.....too much goin' on there.....and they offered to comp me a dessert, which I passed on.
All in all, not horrible, just not great.
I've been to TPK three times for dinner, and overall I like it. The weeknight 3-course meals for $20 are a great bargain. They do a lot of things right -- for example, they buy whole animals and try to actually use them, making their own charcuterie and whatnot. The service is usually very good, and the space is nice. The smoke bothers me sometimes, and not others.
They have a great wine/beer/drinks list from the very cool bar downstairs. I'll keep going back just to support life downtown.
As for Ceres, I've had three very nice dinners, a great breakfast and a terrible lunch there. Nice menu, nice space, and some dishes really rock.
I have seen both phelana and your review of the place before. I have been there three times and have all been good but not "knock your socks off" excellent. I review on food, cleaness,service, and location. The food has always been good, no complaints there. It was clean, but the cigar smoke can be a bother if you go there at certain times. Service is good, kinda chatty but helpfull , which speaking from a former waiter, is a good thing. Location can be tricky. I grew up in worcester and by the username ...on shrewsbury st.I remember Shrewsbury st when it was just a couple Italian-American restauants. I wish there were more places like this in downtown. We need to support places like this, I I just went to Ceres bistro this past weekend and I thought was very good. I saw phelana review of TPK and her mother's dislike of her burger at Ceres. I had great food and service. I usually will give a restaurant two/three times before I give a review. I say go to TPK and think of it as if you never went there before. Then after your dinner , then compare it to the last time you were there. I would't go because of parking(the restaurant hires a valet service,if you have a problem , I would take up with the valet service , not the restaurant and dirty glasses. Even the best of the best, have off days.
I had a different experience than phelana...we went on a weeknight after a special event with a group of 10 and had a great dinner. we parked around the block (everyone was ok with the short walk) and we were seated in the main room upstairs. i'm usually very sensitive to smoke smells and i sensed none. I'm betting the smell is more obvious on the weekend evenings when the cigar bar is busier...
the food was delicious, more on the comfort food side of the spectrum (vs. something super creative), but it was done very well. i was happy with the wine selection as well as the cocktails. i didn't have an issue with dirty glasses, but i'd suspect that would be easy to correct with a quick ask to the wait staff?
the atmosphere was just what we were looking for - good food but not stuffy. there were a number of families dining that night, which surprised me but the kids were all well behaved. i like that it's accessible and not just a "special occasion" kind of place. i'm definitely looking forward to going back to try it again, the menu changes so often that it looks like it will be a whole different set of choices!
We will be in Worcester on Tuesday of this week...any suggestions of where to eat? We will be over by WPI.
Armsby Abbey sounded tasty, but the small space and no reservations were a slight turnoff. TPK sounded good until I read this! Baba Sushi also sounded tasty. How about Bocado?
We are open to many different types of restaurant, good food is the key.
Any advice is appreciated.
I reviewed it a month or so ago here and Yelp. Our initial reception was off and a little unsettling..the valet was not there and they told us to park in handicapped until someone would park it..didn't sit right but I had my 88 year old Mom so had to park somewhere..The smell of the cigar bar bothered us. The waiter was amazing... Food was good...gritty glasses made it unpleasant to drink our wine....I would not go back BUT would also not say don't go..too many other choices IMHO in Wormtown....