Responses to mark m braunstein's Review

Respond to Review of Fire and Spice Vegan Restaurant
by mark m braunstein

Review: Dining at a restaurant only once provides an incomplete conception of its virtues and shortfalls, so with my admonition that I ate here only once, you should read this review "with a grain of salt." My friend and I arrived 7pm on a Saturday night, restaurant primetime, yet we were the only diners there, not an encouraging indicator of the restaurant's popularity, nor a favorable portent of its fate. During our 90 minutes there only one other couple came to eat, one person came for takeout, and four of the chef's or waitress's friends came by only to chat with them, not to eat. By her own admission, this was the waitress's first day there, and judging from her service I would venture to say this was her first day ever working as a waitress anywhere. Still, her enthusiasm compensated for her inexperience. So now on to the food. A slick website (via a template for more conventional restaurants) boasts an extensive menu, yet this Saturday night only four of the entrees were available. Zero appetizers, zero soups, zero pizzas, zero from the raw menu, and only one flavor of smoothie, which was better not to have been served, as it consisted almost entirely of unripe banana. Zero, zero, zero ... "because it was busy today and we ran out of everything." So the menu is merely a fa├žade of wishes and figments of the chef's imagination. In reality, what is actually offered is similar to that of a homey restaurant in Kingston, Jamaica. I speak from experience. When I ate in Kingston where the Rastas of Kingston eat, there were only three dishes from which to choose. Such authentic cuisine of Kingston I suspect will gain scant acceptance in Hartford. But anyhow back in Hartford, we ordered all four dishes, all which were fine examples of Jamaican cooking, in generous portions, and inexpensive at that. So the food is good, but just don't expect to have any variety from which to choose. While I may eat here again, I will be sure to call ahead to verify what's available. All in all a lamentable state of affairs in Connecticut for restaurants espousing veganism and inserting the word VEGAN right into their name. (PS - As of 2011, its online menu better reflects reality, as it has reduced its listings by half.)

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