Seattle Wine Blog

This blog is dedicated to commentary on all aspects of wine, especially short entries to help you find the best wines without the usual hype and spin. These are my frank, independent opinions, usually based on tasting wine at a public event, off the shelf or at the winery. "All creative acts must arise out of a specific soil and flicker with a spirit of place" -D.H. Lawrence

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Is Etta's Losing It's Grip?

I have always loved Tom Douglas's restaurants in Seattle, but tonight may have been a turning point. We started out with attentive service, but ended up waiting over an hour between our appetizers and our main courses. A little while after complaining to three staff members our food finally arrived. The lamb, salmon, tuna steak, and tuna tartare were all good, as was the scallop appetizer. The wine list was interesting and the wines by the glass were good. I particularly enjoyed the 2005 Novelty Hill Chardonnay with it's fresh crisp hint of citrus up front followed by oak flavors of vanilla and tropical fruit. The 2005 Foris Pinot Noir was medium bodied with great fruit. The 2004 St Laurent Syrah was big, fruity and pleasant. When the manager finally arrived at our table, her inadequate explanations were that they were busy (aren't Tom Douglas restaurants supposed to be busy in the evening) and that there was "spooky stuff" gong on. We also noticed that the prices have risen considerably and the food has just lost it's edge. The thirty percent discount we got for complaining just brought the prices back in line. The only thing that might lure me back to a Tom Douglas restaurant is the Lamb Tongue at Lola's. If you must go to Etta's, complain loudly if you get bad service, and you, too, might get a thirty percent discount.


  • At 1:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    All Douglas restaurants are slipping. The food is meh, the service has never been really good, and there is no innovation whatsoever. At a recent visit to Lola the food was so sweet it was sickening.

    But a business is a business. The crowds keep coming, so it must be good, right?

  • At 8:18 AM, Blogger SeattleWineBlog said…

    Thanks for your comment and right on! A business is a business and so many restaurants now want their share of all that nouveau money in Seattle except most of us are not riche. High prices for ordinary food and poor service, wine prices more than double retail, yuck! I'd rather eat at home! Gene


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