Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Debbie Downer

Cafe Milano Sucks

Normally, on The Liquid Muse, I share things I enjoy with my readers. I try to keep it light. I don't like to be a "Debbie Downer."

However, I have to get this off my chest.

Last night, an editor took me to Cafe Milano. I was interested to see what the hype was about.

I admit that their full page ads, of nothing but an almost naked girl, did little to entice me into the place, previously. (Hello... can we scream "Here's the eurotrash!" any louder?)

Still, I'm always up to check out a "hotspot."

What a disappointment.

Firstly, it was LOUD. The place gave me a headache. A few rugs would surely help absorb the echo.

And, it was crowded. Not with the otherworldly gorgeous male and female runway models as implied by the ads. It was the same old stuffy, suited, obnoxious people one would see elbowing their way down K Street.

The thing that pushed me from disappointment to disgust, however, was the service.

I often sit at a bar and ask, "What's your specialty drink?" Most bartenders enjoy showing off their creative talents. At the very least, its an opportunity for them to pour whichever premium liquors they wish into a glass, and be perfectly justified, because I left it to their discretion.

This guy, however, just looked irritated and said, "I don't have one" and stared at me blankly. So, I tried to cajole him into a friendly exchange saying, "Oh come one. Every bartender has a specialty." He practically rolled his eyes and replied, "Vodka, on the rocks."

That was the first moment I formulated the words in my mind, "Cafe Milano sucks."

I ended up with a blueberry mojito. It was a mojito. With blueberries. Yawn.

I'll spare the rest of the sordid details but in a nutshell:

-food: average. especially for a place with those prices. very average.
-drinks: average, at best
-ambiance: lacking
-service: piss-poor

Oh - and did I mention the air conditioning didn't work?

Overall, my evaluation is that Cafe Milano sucks.


Washington Cube said...

Cafe Milano? Hello???? You need a new bartender. said...

No kidding. 'Twas a bummer. I was looking forward to being impressed.

V said...

Cafe Milano is like The Palm, cool when Dems were in power and these days, you might see Bill Clinton or some Deputy of blah, blah there if you're lucky.

That's it. Might as well go to Hard Rock Cafe, darlin.

Anonymous said...

the emperor, as they say....

cafe milano has been living off the hype created by wooing generations of wapo gossip columnists too lazy to report & desperate for sightings of what passes for famous (or infamous) in dc.

Alison Santighian said...

A see and be seen place only - good for that, and good food at too high prices. can see some pretty amazing (note: I did not say good) fashion. What is it about pseudo-euro-but-I-really-live-in-DC-and-am-55+ women and matchy-matchy outfits with too much color?

It's an exercise in people watching. said...

Thanks for the feedback DC afficionados...!

I'd love to see Bill Clinton (I shook his hand back in '91 when he was on the campaign trail and nearly creamed my Victoria's Secrets... I can understand Monica's weakness...)

Still, as restaurants go, I'd rather people watch in a place worth the $$.

Again, bummer. I actually wanted to like it...

Anonymous said...

i feel like you can only go to cafe milano if you're a.) a man who wears belts with shiny designer logos on them or b.) a georgetown sophomore girl from italy who doesn't like all the rap they play at pearl.

almost as bad as the give-a-quarter-take-a-quarter cup at the haagen daz store...

Anonymous said...

Yeah, and the $8 beers (that you have to shotgun just to stave off the oppressive heat in that place)leave one with a sore feeling around the buttocks. Especially considering that we're talking about Amstel/Heineken, as opposed to a quality micro.

But I digress...I was underwhelmed. Not that I had high expectations...but people watching isn't particularly exhillarating when the only thing interesting about the people is their wealth/influence.

Influential people should all be sent to clown school to remedy this situation.

Anonymous said...

Totally agreed. First of all, for an Italian restaurant, nothing on the menu appealed to me. Service IS bad, and it is obnoixiously loud- and normally noise doesn't bother me. Dirty Eurotrash/men with tight pants everywhere. Ugh.

Anonymous said...

my fiance worked their as a server a long time ago...if only you knew how TRULY shitty the food is...

Miss A said...

You all are such unhappy people. The food at Milano is excellent, and service is first class. As far as there being no real celebrities there....I've seen and met Patty LaBelle, Charles Barclay, Madeleine Albright, John Kerry, Teresa Heinz, Chris Matthews, 10 NY Yankees, a Ralph Lauren model, and Salvatore Ferragamo there. All of these people enjoyed the food, service and the did I. If you didn't have such a horrible outlook on life, you might have enjoyed your time there too. But it's fine, Cafe Milano and it's regulars are having a great time without you.

Anonymous said...

cafe milano is the bomb. great service, great food, good wine. If you're not a tool you will be treated very well. The room off to the right when you first walk in is usually available if you ask and offers a more quiet/private atmosphere.