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Just looking for recommendation...Marben, Drake Hotel or Scarpetta

d
dmartins123 Feb 11, 2013 10:25 PM

I am looking for a recommendation. This year, I dont want to go out on Feb14 to celebrate Valentines with the wife. Rather we plan to go out on Saturday (Feb16). We haven't been to either Marben, Scarpetta or Drake Hotel.

I kind of want to go to Marben because of the burger and vibe. Also, its where we got engaged (although, the place was called Nectar at the time...David Adjey even sat with us and it was uncomfortable...yikes).

Scarpetta has a winter prix fixe menu ($45) which sounds good, but I am not sure if we will enjoy it as much as the others. Maybe a little too glossy for a married couple with kids enjoying a night out alone?

And Drake Hotel because we have never been (I must be the only person in the city!!!). We can grab a solid meal and then drinks/music after.

Any advice?

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  1. justxpete RE: dmartins123 Feb 11, 2013 10:57 PM

    Marben's kind of in a re-building phase. They're not quite back to their former glory as yet. But it's *pretty-good*?

    You've kind of picked a few significantly different vibes, though - Drake is a good place for what you've mentioned, Scarpetta is a "dress-up-and-go-out" kind of place, and you know Marben - but it's very different from when it was Nectar, even in it's current iteration.

    If I were to pick one of the three, I'd probably go with The Drake. Good food, good drinks, and a nice casual vibe.

    1. MissBingBing RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 06:14 AM

      Saturday night, Marben has more of a bar atmosphere (not a bad thing if you like loud) especially since it's Valentine's Day weekend. The Drake is also doing a special bar-menu for VDay weekend.
      I'd do Scarpetta unless you enjoy being surrounded by drunk hipsters.

      1. MissBingBing RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 06:16 AM

        Saturday night, Marben has more of a bar atmosphere (not a bad thing if you like loud) especially since it's Valentine's Day weekend. The Drake is also doing a special bar-menu for VDay weekend.
        I'd do Scarpetta unless you want to be surrounded by drunk hipsters.

        1. j
          JennaBean RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 07:09 AM

          I'm really not a fan of the Drake for anything and Scarpette is ok but it is very see and been seen kinda feel to me. My pref would be Marben. I don't find it too barish on a Sat but I like the relaxed feel and that fact that it doesn't try as hard as some of the other places in the hood to be "cool" the way some of them do on King street. Westlodge I'm looking at you!

          1. d
            dmartins123 RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 10:30 AM

            Thanks for the advice! I am leaning toward Marben as well but the wife told me she would like The Drake.

            How about a fourth option: The County General

            LOL at the drunk hipster comment. I warned my wife there would be a lot of plaid shirts and thick rimmed glasses.

            16 Replies
            1. re: dmartins123
              MissBingBing RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 10:32 AM

              And that's just the chicks!

              1. re: dmartins123
                MissBingBing RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 10:34 AM

                Does County General take reservations? Ursa? Beast instead?

                1. re: dmartins123
                  l
                  LemonLauren RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 11:01 AM

                  Scarpetta is the nicest. Marben there will be short skirts. Drake I find the service in the resto proper quite poor. County General much less formal and very different food.

                  1. re: LemonLauren
                    j
                    JennaBean RE: LemonLauren Feb 12, 2013 12:19 PM

                    More plaid than short skirts at Marben IMO. I find it very hipster - maybe that's more the staff but that's who I interact with. Not the other patrons.

                  2. re: dmartins123
                    j
                    JennaBean RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 12:21 PM

                    The County General over the Drake for sure. If you want that hood and want somewhere with reservations but not as what I would call as douchey as the Drake I fully recommend The Saint.

                    1. re: JennaBean
                      justxpete RE: JennaBean Feb 12, 2013 01:55 PM

                      You have a lot of hate on for the Drake, Jenna! I don't find it nearly as hipster-laden as you. They're mostly relegated to the basement, if there at all. They have some talented bartenders, pretty good food, and arguably the nicest patio in the city.

                      1. re: justxpete
                        justsayn RE: justxpete Feb 12, 2013 02:37 PM

                        +1

                        1. re: justxpete
                          j
                          JennaBean RE: justxpete Feb 13, 2013 08:54 AM

                          Not hipster douchy, I'm talking about the suit types trying to be too cool for school. I'll take a poor badly dressed bearded hipster any day over a suit trying too hard!! And yes, I don't like the Drake. I also blame them for wrecking Queen west and making it unaffortable for actual artists! :-)

                          1. re: JennaBean
                            justxpete RE: JennaBean Feb 13, 2013 09:15 AM

                            ohhhhhhhhhh.. yes, they do have a few of those... haha. Makes sense now!

                            1. re: justxpete
                              j
                              JennaBean RE: justxpete Feb 13, 2013 12:19 PM

                              There is a group like this I've run into at Splendido a few times. They speak too loud, where expensive but terrible clothing with big logos and such and like to show off the gold Rolex. I actually turned around and left once because they were being just too loud and annoying for me.

                              I'm fully judgemental and I know it. :-)

                            2. re: JennaBean
                              MissBingBing RE: JennaBean Feb 13, 2013 10:23 AM

                              @ JB That happened long before the Drake came along. Like 1985.

                              1. re: MissBingBing
                                j
                                JennaBean RE: MissBingBing Feb 13, 2013 12:16 PM

                                I live in that hood in a one bedroom in '95 and it was still affordable. I paid $600 all inclusive! My car got broken into three times in less than a year but it was a great hood back then!

                              2. re: JennaBean
                                justsayn RE: JennaBean Feb 13, 2013 01:21 PM

                                Gentrification in that area was inevitable. I MUCH prefer that it went in the direction it did via The Drake, than anything else I can think up. If you accept it as a reality, is The Drake and the galleries and cool restaurants and shops really that bad? I have had so many great meals and pastries over the years, not to mention awesome rooftop times : ) The Drake was a huge risk at the time and personally I am thankful for it.

                                1. re: justsayn
                                  j
                                  JennaBean RE: justsayn Feb 14, 2013 07:32 AM

                                  I may clean up well and make too much money these days to really fit in, but I'm a dive bar kinda gal at the core and I like it that way. We agree to disagree!

                                  1. re: JennaBean
                                    justsayn RE: JennaBean Feb 14, 2013 04:43 PM

                                    Not my point. Sorry. My point is that it was inevitable for that strip to be "cleaned up". The remaining dive strips are now elsewhere and there is NO shortage of them. Slowly but surely they too will be cleaned up.
                                    : (

                                    Given what The Drake brought to Queen W, and the slow but steady growth around it, I am very pleased. Instead of the funky shops, galleries and good eats, it could have been rows of condos, or The Gap. I love that The Drake brought arts and entertainment to that area. When you clean up, you should be pleased too. No?

                            3. re: JennaBean
                              d
                              dmartins123 RE: JennaBean Feb 12, 2013 06:18 PM

                              Thanks JennaBean,

                              We were recently at The Saint and had a really memorable experience. I want to return for the brunch some weekend.

                          2. c
                            c_snapper RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 03:46 PM

                            how do you guys define "hipster"

                            a real hipster would not be caught dead at Scarpetta, also a real hipster may not be able to afford it.

                            if your goal is to steer clear of hipsters, definitely don't go to the County General as you'll be SERVED by hipsters but the food is pretty awesome.

                            Edulis?

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: c_snapper
                              justxpete RE: c_snapper Feb 12, 2013 04:07 PM

                              There is only a single server who might be considered a 'hipster' serving at County. Having tattoos does not make someone a hipster. You're definitely mistaken.

                            2. d
                              dmartins123 RE: dmartins123 Feb 12, 2013 06:27 PM

                              Okay....thanks for all the advice and the definition of hipster.

                              I think we will go to....Marben.

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