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OK, is it just me or is the atmosphere at Dandylion so contrived

  • k
  • Kater May 30, 2011 05:53 PM

that it becomes distracting?

I thought that the food was very well prepared. In fact, the mussels were some of the best I've ever had. For that matter the shepherd's pie was also outstanding. Oh and our server was efficient and personable.

But there was just a really weird vibe at the venue. There was a simply enormous staff. Everyone who interacted with us was welcoming and helpful but there were more of them than there were customers. They've gone too far with the old pub decor but each of these things taken individually is just not that big of a deal.

I suppose the reason I've written this is that usually when the food is as good as that we're anxious to return but instead the verdict was Great but we aren't in any hurry to return.

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  1. I haven't been to Dandelion. I've heard the food is very good. No surprise that it's so contrived. Every Stephen Starr restaurant is a theme park. Fortunately, this one has good food.

    1. I felt like I walked into the holodeck on Star Trek TNG. Like something isn't quite real about this place. Also I thought that food we had was adequate to poor. I've had better omlettes at the airport. And the beer is overpriced. Went once for a family meal and can't imagine going again other than for a quick drink.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Chinon00

        I was fine with Dandelion. It would fit in well at Epcot. The food was very good and so was the service. They just need to get rid of the piped-in hip hop music. It just doesn't fit in.

      2. I've eaten at Dandelion twice and loved it. All the food I had was terrific--deviled eggs, mussels, crab salad, butter lettuce salad, cheese board and fish & chips. I didn't find the atmosphere to be overly contrived. Yes, the decor is very theme-y, but no different than the other Starr places (I like this one better than most). I guess it didn't really bother me. I also didn't notice anything about the service, but it was busy when I was there, and I was with a good sized group, so I might just not have noticed. Everyone I was with had a great time.

        1. It's definitely contrived, but I didn't find it distractingly in a negative way. Actually, compared to some of the other Starr restaurants, I enjoyed walking around and noting the unique design in each room and some of the design details around. I think it's well designed, even if a bit over the top. Then again, I have a bit of an interest in traditional British art and decor.

          I found the food a mixed bag. Fish and chips were good but didn't wow me like others, especially at the price though I recognize they use good fish. Maybe I don't appreciate the dish like others. Pates were good but not better than anywhere else decent. Pickles were a letdown since they are served similarly to Village Whiskey but are better there. The pork belly was outstanding.

          I plan on taking a British client there soon and I'm curious to hear his take.

          1. Food was great, music has kept me afraid of returning. So loud, and so annoying.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Delucacheesemonger

              I've sat in the downstairs bar area three times and I didn't find it loud at all, in fact I could barely hear it. Where were you sitting?

              1. re: barryg

                Top floor, but after three requests volume was turned down.

            2. My first visit to the Dandelion was this weekend - we sat at the bar and enjoyed Pimm's Cups and a few plates. The chicken and duck liver parfait was outstanding, some of the best pate I've ever had (but in no way a parfait!) and the steak tartare was completely untraditional but exceedingly delicious. We also had some really nicely shucked oysters and the pickled beets (ok, but not particularly enlightening). The bartender was absolutely charming and I didn't find the music obnoxious. I'll definitely be back - the proximity to Franklin Mortgage and Investment doesn't hurt either. :)

              1 Reply
              1. re: malkazanie

                I ate at The Dandelion for lunch yesterday. Because it was Memorial Day it was very slow, and I guess the music was turned down because of that. I was mixed on the food. My friends that cook there told me I could NOT miss the duck and liver parfait. It was spectacular. A hotel spoon-sized quenelle of moussey, light pate served with thick-sliced toasted brioche, some cornichons, and a grape compote/chutney. Truly one of the most outstanding dishes I've eaten in a long time. The smoked trout pate I thought was just average -- well executed but just kind of blah. The fish and chips was certainly delicious -- the batter was so think and crisp it was transparent, liked golden glass. The fries were great and the tartar/gribiche/remoulade was good too. However, I think good fish and chips is just good fish and chips. The Ploughman's lunch -- which was so new to the menu that the server knew nothing about it, was blah. While it resembled the Ploughman's Lunches I used to see my parents eat at pubs while I lived in England as a child, the dish has never really stood out as anything that interesting. The burger was, however, delicious: excellent meat, Parc-baked brioche bun, shaved red onion, lettuce, cheese and special sauce. Our server, however, was either nursing a heavy-duty hangover or just NOT in the mood to work Memorial Day lunch (no money to be had there) was definitely off his game. If I were not moving to New Orleans tomorrow I would certainly return -- the parfait alone is worth the trip.