Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ristorante Pavarotti: Improving

When I last visited Ristorante Pavarotti in Reading, it had only been open for about three weeks and I was rather underwhelmed. But I intended to return there after some time had passed to see whether it had changed or not. All new restaurants need some time to work out the kinks, to get everything in its proper place. I ate there again recently and was pleased to see that some positive changes have occurred, though I still have a couple issues with the place.

First, the wine list has not changed and I remain disappointed by their very limited wine-by-the-glass options. As they only serve beer and wine, I would hope could provide a more interesting selection.

Second, they have changed their bread, now offering fresh, warm sliced bread with their oil. The bread almost looked like a small loaf and I really liked it. This is a positive change, helping to set a good initial impression, hinting of the promises of good food that should soon be delivered. It certainly gave me hope.

Third, the food menu has undergone some modification, apparently adding some appetizers, changing a few items, and some of the prices may even be a little lower. Plus they had a number of nightly specials, including items like a veal chop and filet mignon. I should also add that many of the entrees now come with a variety of possible pastas, including fusilli, and not just ziti as before. There are all more positive changes.

I began with an appetizer of Mussels ($9.95) which came in a white wine sauce with cherry tomatoes. The mussels tended to be on the larger size, though they were fairly tender. The sauce was tasty, and a good place to dip my bread. Overall, a good dish though not exceptional.

My entree was the Veal Parmigiana ($18.95), which I believe is $1 cheaper than it used to be, and I had it with a side of fusilli. I did have to ask the waitress though about my pasta side as she did not volunteer any options. The veal was quite large and covered with plenty of melted cheese. It tasted good, as did the red sauce, and the veal was fairly tender. But like the mussels, though the dish was good, it was not exceptional.

I am glad that the restaurant has made some positive changes since its initial opening. It sells good food, at average prices, but I still have concerns that it is not competitive enough with all of the other local Italian restaurants. I don't think you get anything special here that you can't find at most other Italian places. So why would you choose this restaurant? You may enjoy your meal here but I don't think you will fine it memorable. I would like to see them do something different, unique, which would make them stand out in the crowd.

Ristorante Pavarotti
601 Main St.
Reading, MA
Phone: 781-670-9050

Ristorante Pavarotti on Urbanspoon

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