Saturday, November 6, 2010

Sometimes, change isn't good: Stonewood Grill, Ormond Beach

First of all, let me make my stand.  I adore Stonewood.  It is consistent, delicious, and satisfying, every time.  Perfect date night destination.  When I first found out that they were changing their menu, I was wary, but I looked forward to their new culinary creations.

Last night there was a wait, so we enjoyed a glass of Malbec from their new "boutique" wine list.  Ryan was our bartender.  He is great.

When we seated at our booth, our server expressed enthusiastically, "Haven't seen you in a while!"  Which is so dumb, because he has never been our server and neither one of us know him.  Immediately, I feel my eyebrow raising.  I ask about specials.  He responds, "Everything on the menu is a special!"  Ok, this dude is a douche.

The few new menu items were not something to write home about.  For example, Tuscan chicken: marinated grilled chicken with their new Mediterranean topping (wouldn't that make it Mediterranean Chicken?)  I love the Mediterranean Salad for an appetizer, especially since you can order it in a half serving.  New menu=no more.  Our server insists, the kitchen cannot offer a half serving.  He offers us a bread basket, which he rolls his eyes, then proclaims that it really needed updating.  Did he just insult their sourdough bread?  Douchbaggery confirmed.

I love their sourdough bread.  But, new menu=no more.  Now it is an assortment featuring a greasy soft pretzel and other tiny, mediocre rolls.

I had the filet with portobello ravioli.  It was delicious.  Loved it.  Pricy, at $27.  The HunBun had the lamb, and it was so tender and delicious as well.  I'm not even a lamb person, but these tiny morsels of savory lamb were impressive & tasty.

It is obvious to me that the new menu is Stonewood adapting to our slow, local, economy, and therefore, cutting costs.  They have slimmed down their menu.

The partner came over and asked about our dining experience.  I was honest with him, and expressed my disappointment with the cuts.  He insisted that the new menu had only been in effect for 3 weeks, and the team was so excited about the new menu.

What was there to be so excited about?  Less items to memorize?

We left Stonewood satisfied with the meals, but a bit nostalgic and bittersweet about their former offerings.

Stonewood Grill & Tavern on Urbanspoon

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