Foods from Robbie's Spaghetti House


2010 Apr 8
I dined at Robbie's Spaghetti House in June 2009 and I will think twice about dining there again.

I stopped in there because it had been a long time since I'd dined there... but mainly because of proximity.

Dinner started off well with fresh bread and room-temperature butter that was easy to spread.

Then came the entrées.

I had the Seafood Combination Plate (Breaded filet of sole, scallop fettuccine and shrimp risotto) and my fellow diner had Lasagna (Layers of fluted pasta noodles altered with rich meat sauce and Brick cheese).

I questioned the server about the risotto, which I didn't think was actually risotto. I asked her to confirm that it was in fact impostor risotto: rice pilaf with sauce on top. She told me that she was told it's risotto and that if I wanted, she could bring me more sauce, that customers often complained that there was too much sauce so they put less. I am not a Chef, but I always thought risotto got creamy by the way it was cooked, not by putting sauce on top.

Moving on...

The scallop fettuccine was 50% good, 50 % terrible. The fettuccine Alfredo was wonderful. The sauce divine and it didn't congeal when it cooled. The three scallops place on top were disgusting. They tasted as if they had been boiled in water. No. Seasoning. Whatsoever. Blerch. The only thing they had going for them was that their tenderness. Would it kill them to sauté them in a little butter or something?

The sole was mediocre. I couldn't tell if it has been previously frozen or not. The coating really overpowered the fish.

The lasagna was ok. Not the lasagna I expect from an Italian restaurant. It was basically a long noodle or two with some sauce and melted cheese on top. It is not served from a pan like the lasagna I am used to. It cam in an oval dish that had been in the oven and is plated at the table.
I suspect it is put together "rustically" or rather by slapping some sauce on the bottom of the dish, adding the noodles and more sauce and grated cheese. I thought lasagna was supposed to actually be a layered dish made in a baking pan with layers of noodles, sauce, different cheese, other stuff... This lasagna version could have been spaghetti for all that mattered.

I have two words for the decor: Nursing home.

Stick to spaghetti or fettuccine Alfredo ... or make your way to many of Ottawa's other Italian restaurants for truly great Italian food.