Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Aldo's, Los Gatos

Our close family friends (and they are not alone) adore Aldo's with it's uber-friendly servers, accessible drinks and standard Italian-American dishes. And, admittedly, it's a good place for rambunctious children. If only the review could end here.
Surely there are many reviews of Aldo's that attempt to point out its failure of "authenticity." But that misses the point. More importantly, it is a general blow to ones culinary intelligence, exuding the plasticine sense of a Disneyesque Italy outlet while producing largely flavorless dishes with distinctive notes of frozen food and vacuum packing. Whether it's authentically Italian or not is largely irrelevant when the food and drink simply are not very good.
Gnocci are overcooked, taste frozen, and spackled in an overwrought blue-cheese dressing. Cannoli gasp for air in a pool of indistinguishable packaged cream sauce, which accents the saccarine twang of the ricotta cream. A chocolate martini arrives proudly adorned with flaccid whipped cream redolent of aerosol and artificial sweetener. Is anything actually made in house? Perhaps it all is, but there's not much evidence to support it.
On the positive side, the rigatoni is cooked well and not oversauced with a perfectly acceptable version of a home-cooked meat sauce - faint praise for sure.
To say more would feel like picking on dear Aldo, who has carved out a successful niche in the family dining space. One can only hope that as tastes evolve, consumers will either demand more accountability from their friends at Aldo's, or find another less cynical place to dine casually.

Number of visits: 2

14109 Winchester, Campbell

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