Newton >Food & Dining > Tartufo Restaurant
22 Union St, Newton Centre, MA | Directions 0245942.330329 -71.191148
Mon - Fri:11:30am - 10pm; Sat, 4pm - 10pm Sun, 4pm - 9pm
Mediocre..... – Not sure why anyone would give this alleged "Italian Restaurant" more than about 2 stars. As a true Italian, trust me, you are better off going to Paparazzi in Wellsley where food is fairly good, cooked out in the open, and brick ovens exist. Tartufo is no bargain by any stretch of the imagination. Wines are cheap but way overpriced, antipasto is beyond overpriced for what you get, food is mixed bag depending on day and cook, and the pasta with a tartufo? Look carefully and try to find THE tartufo...and when you do, ask where it came from (China?) and why the unbelievable steep price. Avoid bar area seating, they chat there and it's noisy as hell. Try and see if you can ignore the "chefs" frequent outbursts in public to his workers. good old "dante", can't boil water as far as we can tell! Food is no better than mediocre but way way overpriced. Our advice: Drive by and keep going!:
Glad We Went – My husband and I went to Tartufo's for the first time on Saturday, Nov. 27, and had quite an enjoyable dining experience. We were seated around 6:00 p.m. Our waiter was attentive, our food was delicious, and the entrée portions were just right for us.
When we go out to eat, I typically have just one slice of bread so that I’ll have room to fit my meal. However, things were different this time. While waiting for our appetizer, I just couldn’t stop eating their bread. What made it so enticing was its light texture and crispy crust. It tasted delicious dipped in olive oil and wasn’t filling.
For an appetizer we decided to go with the antipasto. The Italian cold cuts were top quality, the prosciutto was thinly-cut, and the piquant Parmigiano cheese contrasted the flavors nicely. Our only recommendation for this plate would be that they increase the portion size to better match the price.
Next to come out were Greg's shrimp scampi and my Mediterranean sea bass with mussels. The shrimp scampi was served with homemade tagliatelli. The pasta was cooked slightly more than al dente and had a light garlic and fresh-diced tomato sauce. Five large shrimp topped the pasta and each were well cooked yet tender. A little sprinkle of red pepper flakes enhanced this already scrumptious dish.
The Mediterranean sea bass that I ordered came with either mussels or risotto; I went with the mussels and was very glad I did. The fish was fresh, very tasty, and cooked to perfection. The mussels were arranged along one side of the dish which made a nice presentation. They were flavorful and well cooked.
For dessert we shared a tiramisu and each had a cappuccino. What a delicious way to end what turned out to be a wonderful meal.
once was enough.... – We went there recently before reading all the mixed reviews. Ordered the antipasto ($13) , the "tartufo signature grilled veal chop" ($35), the "Veal Piccata" ($23), and cannoli ($6), along with wine. First, the wine..: we got presentted with a bottle of Italian wine at hugely inflated price and it was no better that the "jug wine" sold by Cribari. Based on our serving, I could not reccomend the $13 antipasto to anyone, as it was ripoff #2: a few pieces of coldcuts and a couple pieces of cheese..all worth maybe $3.00 and sold at huge markup. That so-called "signature dish" of veal says a lot. If taht is their "signature" dish...then the place is truly 4th rate. It came to ma bit dry, undercooked, and tasted like pre-frozen meat to me. My wife's Veal Piccata was a slop of tasteless "something". Top it off with $6 mushy (prefilled?) cannoli...and it definetly convinced us to not return to that 3rd rate cafeteria passing itself off as an elite Italian restaurant. funny thing is, we are Italian and cook Italian (wife born in Italy) and from scale of 1-10, their food that night rated a 3 from us. Go if you like, but we scratched it off.
Not impressed – We dined there recently and found it OK but unremarkable. Having read reviews, we stayed away from overpriced antipastos that are embarrassingly served with minimal contents on the plate (we noticed a few). We stuck to main course and got the veal. Nothing to write home about, tasted like Restaurant Depot meat and not fresh natural meat (though I have no way of knowing). It was bland and not particularly "Italian" or "unique". I've had better at lesser places and to top it off, it was not hot...just barely tepid.. The wine was not something I would advertise to people as it's a pathetic act to charge so much for what tastes like "jug wine" at best. The service was slow and the place was not full. We saw the noted chef a few times trying to chat or impress the customers but I have heard he is far from a chef, more like a short-order cook, but again can't vouch as he likely did not cook our food. Would I go back? Nope....food is just "OK" but certainly NOT worth the price they want. But, maybe it was a bad night so you should check it out yourself. Remember - skip the antipasto ! Get the CHEAPEST wine on the menu as more expensive stuff is also "cheap".
Not even worthy of a star- but it made me put one – This restaurant is outright offensive!!
If you order wine- especially the super Tuscan selection- The servers are instructed to pour house wine. Grey goose martini? I hope you can tell the difference- because he doesn't pour the proper product.(but will charge the proper price)Althought there are certain items on the menu for a guest to "order", they do not exist in the restaurant and are misrepresented by the establishment. They have been known to charge for bread. They also have been known to add items to a check or and order without notice to the guest.
The owner Dante has been regularly seen actually having arguements with guests and servers. He misrepresents his food by calling it organic and local. The tuna is indonesian and pumped with carbon minoxide for color before frozen. The rest of the items on the menu follow suit with this theme. Steaks and so forth are all low quality cuts and frozen. This guy even calls himself the "chef" yet is incapable of cooking a grilled cheese. Read past reviews on Chowhound, Yelp, Boston dot com- I am not the only one who has experienced this.
The deserts are all 50 cent items bought at restaurant depot. Nothing is made on premise. My suggestion for prospective guests is to open a can of Chef Boyardee, open a box of Franzia, and wave down the ice cream truck- the quality of all those items will be better and you can save all of the money that this place plans on extorting from you.
Anything for a buck... – Some food is OK, other is not up to standard. Price is most definitely overboard for what you get. Sitting close to bar is worst thing possible...noisy and obnoxious employees. Chief chef should also stop yelling in public at employees on occasion. Antipastos are heavily overpriced and miniscule in quantity. Stay away from pasta with so-called tortufo........TINY portion at huge cost, probably the very worst value in the joint. Stick with grilled en-trees. Wine is also overpriced and cheap in type. Some selections are OK. You need to judge for yourself but from our 3 visits, the place gets at best mixed reviews.
Stick with Papa-Razzi – Mediocre food passed on as original Italian. It's OK, but definitely not worth the prices they list. As others have also said, the wines are a ripoff in price....3rd rate wines at premium prices. You can do just as well and better in price at Papa-Razzi for sure.
Il mangiare non e' veramente Italiano. Certo mangiare e' buono e certo fa schifo, ma tutto costa troppo. Il "chef" non e' un vero "chef" come uno pensa. Invece e' un cuoco di montagna. Va in giro come un coglione con una risa di cretine. Io raccomando andare e provare e poi vedere se e' abbastanza buono per ritornare. Non toccare pasta con tartufi, costa troppo e il principale da pochissima. Il restorante e' pulito, bellino dentro, ma il mangiare non e' sempre buono.
Its OK, but I would not go out of my way... – The place is OK. But, nothing to write home about in terms of food quality and value. We have been there a number of times due to our home location and we have found that quality of food is very inconsistent from week to week. Food tthat tastes reheated, food that is not warm, long food waiting times, overcooked food, undercooked food. It's also true about "cheap wine", but what normal restaurant doesn't serve cheap wine at inflated prices? They serve $6-$8/bottle wine at $30+/bottle and make it look like it's a great Italian wine - it isn't. But, that's part of the business. The chef, dante, as prior reviews have alluded to - is truly a clown with big grin and sporadic yelling at staff. I think a more befitting title for him is "head cook". A chef he is definetly not. But, hey, what restaurant is perfect? Don't go by all the reviews here. Use them only as a guide and check it out yourself.
it's OK, but not great.. – It's ok, small, and overpriced. I got ripped off on the pasta with tartufo...about a spoonfull of pasta with a few cheap (probably Chines sourced) mushrooms they like to call "tartufos". Tartufo my a-s! They were fancy mushrooms! Over $20 for spoonfull on huge plate? Please..give me a break! Stay away from pasta dishes and antipastos..stick to main course ONLY and you may be OK. It's sometimes a crapshoot..so about average for main course. By the way, the wine is 4th rate cheap..but they boost up price by 500% to make it appear special...so careful on the wine. The chef seems to be a "fool" with his stupid grin all the time while occasionally yelling at staff. It's a bit noisy and small. Place is clean and it tries to give one a cozy atmosphere.....but overall it's just "average" food and most is NOT truly "authentic" Italian...just a wanna-be copy. I'm not saying it's bad as I still go occasionally and get a main course, just saying "watch what you order"...and don't expect consistency in quality night to night..
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