Given the rave reviews, both my husband (several years ago) and I (this past weekend) were convinced to take each other out for our birthdays here. I had forgotten the name, and thus chose it thinking we had not been before.
As I remember the past experience now, we were put off by the appearance of the restaurant, but liked (but did not love) the food experience. We did not make it a place to return to.
So this past weekend, we were going without memory of our previous experience, until we arrived. Since we then had a vague memory of it being ok, we pushed past the low-end exterior (it is thru the main door of a group of storefronts sharing a hallway, and down the stairwell into the basement) and went down. There was a very unpleasant odor that got stronger as we descended into the restaurant. I couldn't place the odor, and tho I commented on it, I tried to push past that too. We had arrived at 4pm, an odd hour, and no one was there, customers or staff. We stood at the front desk, briefly looking at the menus, while deciding if we could eat in the face of the odor. We decided we could not, and left. Not sure what the foul odor was but just couldn't do it.
Just to give everyone the benefit of knowing about the ambiance before arriving, so as not to be shocked (and maybe to give it a chance if they want, given the rave food reviews). It is unkempt 1950s coffee house decor, laminated menus that are pretty beat up, and not sparkling clean.
I really wanted to try it again, given the reviews. Just couldn't do it.
Cons: Appearances, cleanliness, odor