Posted by Foobooz on May 9th, 2007
Kirsten Henri doesn’t dance around her opinion of Jose Garces’ wine bar, Tinto. In paragraph one she gets right to the point, “Tinto is great.” What does surprise her however is the formalness of the dining experience.
I was expecting more of a wine barÂâ€”a jovial, bustling spot. Tinto is bustling all right, but itâ€™s a slickly organized affair.
Iâ€™ve already written about my distaste for Tintoâ€™s practice of taking reservations for barstools, which has thankfully been discontinued, but there are other elements that make for an oddly stiff dining experience. Waiters deliver long-winded spiels describing the tapas-style of dining and the sections of the menu. Plates are delivered to the table with the solemn reverence that typically accompanies the delivery of communion wafers, and dishes are described in tireless detail, down to the sprigs of garnish.
Itâ€™s nice theyâ€™re so knowledgeable and take such pride in the food, but sometimes you just want to eat without feeling obliged to also worship.