Monday, August 31, 2009

A Weekend of Sisterhood + Fabulous Eats

Hello there! I took the past few days off from blogging as my lovely sister Annie was in town. She was here for less than 48 hours, however it feels like a lot longer as we packed activities into each day and evening!
Among other things, we experienced some great food. We ate out... I don't know... three times? Lol. 
Saturday started with a lunch at Fratello's, a restaurant overlooking the Milwaukee River in the Historic 3rd Ward. Here are some photos from the restaurant's website - it was too cold out for us to sit on the patio, but the interior has a modern, warm vibe.
Special guests were my Aunt Bonnie and Uncle Dave, who were in town from Eau Claire for a Jimmy Buffet concert! My family also chose Fratello's for my Mom's birthday dinner earlier this year, and while the server was great, the food was so-so. This time around, the service was poor but the food was a bit better. 
The problem with service, started with too little bread being brought out for the dip trio that was ordered for an appetizer. I was late to lunch and did not get a photo of this... but it looked like mini garlic toasts and pita wedges were offered alongside hummus, bruschetta topping and a third mystery dip. 
When I got there, there was about 50% of the dips left but we were out of bread. My Mom requested some more and we did this 2x. It wasn't until later when we had the bill, that the waitress had charged an extra dollar for each tiny basket of bread! Sure, an extra dollar isn't that bad - but she should have mentioned we were being charged each time. 
I started with a cup of broccoli soup - it was nice and hot, but pretty bland. Tasted fine after I added some salt + pepper.
For an entree, I chose the Blackened Halibut Salad. 
The fish was great - perfectly done, warm and spicy with the blackened seasoning. The salad was pretty standard, next time I'd probably request the mixed greens vs. the romaine lettuce base. There were black olives and feta cheese in the mix; the feta was good but the black olives tasted can-ny. It's a big pet peeve of mine that restaurants cut corners by using canned black olives instead of kalamata olives in Greek-type of salads. I digress...
My sister ordered the margherita pizza. They key to this simple dish is fresh ingredients for fresh flavors - ripe tomato, tangy basil, fresh sweet mozzarella cheese.
She said that it was not very good... the tomatoes were mushy, there wasn't enough cheese, the basil wasn't fresh and there was too little. Annie is a foodie and loves her pizza, so this was a disappointment. 
For dessert, we ordered the trio of cupcakes for the table. Fratello's has a lovely cupcake menu with lots of options!
We chose the Turtle, the Peanut Butter Cup, and the Chocolate Fixx.
These were great - frostings were the highlight - however the cake parts tasted pretty stale. I enjoyed a few spoonfuls of the Turtle, and tasted the frostings only for the Peanut Butter Cup and Chocolate Fixx. A sweet ending to the meal.
I usually keep an open mind with restaurants... however have to comment that the server was absolutely horrible to my Mom. When we received the bill, the waitress rudely (and I do mean rudely) and loudly proclaimed that "We DON'T accept Discover cards, actually MOST restaurants DO NOT accept them." She also cleared the table of every utensil - water glasses which we were still drinking out of, every last piece of cutlery - while all of us were still sitting there. Many times she interrupted our personal space by stacking plates, slamming stuff around - inches from our shoulders or arms! What a rude gal. I hope that whatever was bugging her, she gets over quickly because WE will not be headed back to the place anytime soon!
Sorry for the rant. I insist on being honest on this blog, and that was my honest opinion :-)
Coming up - a recap of our visit to the Milwaukee Public Market, and Saturday's dinner + dessert!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Our 2 experiences at Fratello's were SO-SO at best too...however, the last time we had the featured cupcake, which was a blueberry streusel cupcake and it was TO DIE FOR.....I didn't think a blueberry cupcake would do it for me, but it was seriously delicious. If you ever go back and see that cupcake, you have to try it! Sorry your experience was only so-so too:(