Olde School Saloon & Bistro, New Haven
What do we think about the food at Olde School Saloon & Bistro in New Haven? We've had such a mixed bag in two recent visits that I wondered what others have experienced.
We went in early June for the first time. We had a wonderful experience. The food was delicious, expertly prepared, interesting and a good value. For starters, we had escargot and a pate. The chef sent out a plate of fried calamari, gratis. Then we had two pasta dishes - a ravioli with smoked mozzarella and a pasta with mixed seafood. We also enjoyed some cocktails and a bottle of wine.
The only weird thing was that were were the only people in the whole dining room. It was a Friday night. We ate a bit on the early side because we were headed to a concert, but still, it was strange. The waitress was friendly and attentive. The bar room was hopping, so we thought "next time, we'll sit in there."
We sat in the bar again this week, and we had a polar opposite experience. The food was very off. A steak ordered medium rare came well-done and tough as a brick. We sent it back. We waited almost half an hour to get yet another well-done steak. The waitress took it off the bill. The accompanying potatoes and salad were very good, so one diner made a meal of that.
We also ordered a duck dish that was overcooked but still all right. The waitress informed us that the dish was completely different from the menu description, but the revised dish sounded good, so we tried it. It came as two duck breasts swimming in a bland watery sauce that tasted vaguely of oranges. The accompanying risotto and broccoli rabe were good.
We started with a beet salad that was tasty but artless - gigantic slabs of beet fanned out with four tiny nut-crusted morsels of goat cheese and some dressed greens.
We'd like to give the place one more try, but we're reluctant. Any feedback is welcome. Thanks.