Thursday, September 16, 2010

Trattoria on the Hill

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First a pet peeve of mine: small parking lots where they insist on valeting the car and then park it ten steps away from the entrance to the restaurant. I understand if you want to charge me to park. That's fine, parking is at a premium in this area (not quite as bad as the North End of Boston), but they should be allowed to charge for the parking. BUT, when I finish dinner and have to wait behind two other parties when my car is so close I could fart on it - I get irritated. Just put somebody at the entrance to the parking lot (like they do at L'Albatros) and charge what you need to charge and be done with it .

I ordered the breaded veal special of the evening with a side of veg and pasta. The veal spent way too long in the fryer or pan or whatever they cooked it in. (Judging by the way it was breaded I'm guessing fryer.) Very tough and greasy. The pasta was cooked just the way I like it, but there was a TON of sauce on it. In general I think most of what they serve here is sauced with a very heavy hand. Giving them the benefit of the doubt; perhaps that's the way their customers prefer it, which in the end does have a major affect on what stays on the menu and how it's served.

Dessert had quite the selection: Cannoli, Cassatta Cake and the ubiquitous Tiramisu. With the wide variety at Presti's and the gelato at Anthony's (I recommend trying both), we decided to walk our dinner off and get some gelato.

My guess is the attraction at Trattoria on the Hill or Roman Gardens is that the food is your typical red sauce Italian American fare that everyone here in the US equates to as "Italian". Admittedly, Trattoria does serve up monster portions for a very affordable price. If you like that sort of meal then I think you will most certainly enjoy your visit here. I found the service to be very cordial and attentive - the waiter had the accent to boot If you're looking for something similar to what you'd find in Italy I'd keep looking. I'm always happy when a place is packed. It means some sector of the dining public is very happy with the food that's being served - even if it isn't my thing.

Trattoria on the Hill (Roman Gardens)
12207 Mayfield Rd
Cleveland, OH 44106
(216) 421-2700

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  1. I fully agree with you--reasonable prices, parking is a major pain, food is middling and not interesting. I'd much rather someplace like Baricelli Inn (RIP) or Whole Foods Osteria (the Italian is less Americanized, prices are still reasonable). Sarah, as a fan of both Italian and Italian-American fare, quite likes Trattoria, though.

  2. I have to admit, the parking aspect is annoying! For some reason, the last time i had their veal it was quite enjoyable. Hit or miss I guess?