Monday, June 24, 2013


It's a good idea to give a restaurant at least a couple tries before sharing an opinion. That's my thought, ordinarily, but I'm willing to ditch the advice on occasion. Why? Dinner at a new place might be amazing and I want friends to try it right away. Or food is beyond awful. Or maybe a place is so dirty I don't want to touch anything let alone eat.

At The Dorrance (60 Dorrance Street, Providence  401-521-6000) I (we) were served flawless dinners, not a fault in the plates served (though the desserts were a bit precious, way over-thought). But the room - the look, chairs, style - all say wedding venue. It's like having dinner in a hotel ballroom.

Circe (50 Weybosset Street, Providence  401-437-8991) is the reborn DownCity Diner, sleekly painted in paler hues but pretty much the same. I understand the owners are going for "restaurant" but the feel is "bar" because that's where the noise is. On my first visit service was poor despite an empty room and nothing eaten at our table suggested come back again so I won't.

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