Michelin star prices without the Michelin star experience.
I decided to take my wife to The Lodge for her birthday. The food was decent, but nowhere near worth the $300 price tag it carried. Let me preface the rest of the review by saying that my wife and I love food. We have had the privilege to dine at some of the finest restaurants in the world head up by chefs such as Ferran Adria, the Roca brothers, Heinz Beck, and others. With that said, we did not expect The Lodge to surpass or, even compare to those experiences but, we were at least hoping to leave feeling like we got what we paid for.
I want to get a few complaints off my chest before I talk about the food. First, we were asked if we were celebrating a special occasion. We were. We told them. They did nothing. I've never experienced that before. Next, we waited for 10 minutes in the lounge before we were offered anything to drink. By the time our drinks arrived, our table was ready. Next, we were seated and given a brief explanation of the menu which was fine except for how often Chef Jason Dady's name was mentioned. It had a bit of a cheesy feel to it. As though Dady's ego was the main course of the menu and we were lucky to get a taste of it. Next, the wine was not presented for our approval before serving. It just showed up in a glass and placed on our table. Very unprofessional. This is a courtesy extended at most mid-level restaurants. Next, our wine glasses were only filled a 1/3 of the way. When paying $16 a glass, you should at least get 1/2 of that glass filled. Next, the service was a circus. We had 5 different waiters/waitresses throughout the night. At one time, even the hostess served us food. Once again, I have never experienced this before at any restaurant. Next, our bread was served an hour into the meal right before our main course. What's the point?
We started off with the seared diver scallop, which was adequately cooked but, a bit boring. The seasoning did nothing to inspire your senses. Unfortunately, this would turn out to be the theme of the night.
Next, was the foie gras. This was one of the best dishes of the night. It was elegant and creative.
Next, we were served an alfredo pasta with corn dressing. The entree was gratis, but I would not have paid for it anyway. It was salty and thrown together. Something you might cook for yourself one of those nights that you have to get creative with a bare pantry.
For the main course, I had the cast iron seared beef tenderloin (although it was more crusted than seared). The flavors were simple but tasty. There were a few burnt spots on the pepper crust and the tenderloin was cold and raw in the middle. A few of the vegetables scattered around the plate were also burnt. Not what I would expect from a chef with Dady's reputation. My wife had the rabbit wrapped in pancetta. This dish was nearly flawless. It could be best described as great comfort food. I wish that I would have ordered it.
For dessert we had the "souffle" inspired nutella chocolate cake with a peanut butter mousse and caramel. It's hard to screw up chocolate and peanut butter. It was yummy. Not sure how it was "souffle" inspired though? As my wife put it, it was like a deconstructed Snickers bar.
All in all it was a disappointing experience. Food of this caliber is supposed to transcend your palette. It should be more than just a combination of ingredients on a plate. The food seemed to lack creativity and passion. I'm not sure if this is product of Dady's inexperience, or his ego. He seems to be a bit of a big fish in a little pond. Many people in San Antonio sing his praises, and his food seems to suffer for it. At the end of the day Dady's food was good, not great, and certainly not Michelin worthy. If the prices were cut in half, I would recommend The Lodge. Otherwise, I would check out Bin 555. Another Dady restaurant priced more to his ability.
Not Vegetarian Friendly. My husband and I have enjoyed The Lodge on several occasions and left the restaurant very satisfied. Unfortunately for some reason the restaurant decided to no longer accommodate vegetarians, unlike every restaurant I have dined at in San Antonio. We were told when we made our reservations today that it would be no problem "the chef could cook off the menu" yet, 5 minutes later we receive a call back that they are unable to accommodate us. Because Chef JASON DADY prepares everything ahead of time, he "doesn't have time to fix something for vegetarians BECAUSE HE IS CHEF JASON DADY" I'm sorry, but it is a bit pompous of the staff to build the chef up as if he is a GOD and for Jason Dady being such a great chef you would think it wouldn't be too difficult to saute some vegetables and make a salad. But I guess this was just too much for the restaurant to handle. Im so disappointed how we were treated over the phone by the hostess and disappointed that a great chef such as Jason Dady couldn't accommodate people who can't eat meat. The food is great, but I wont give my money to people who treat customers poorly.
Horrible experience at The Lodge.
On August 28, 2009 my husband and I went to The Lodge to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary. We ordered the chef's signature tasting menu along with the wine pairing which costs $110 per person.
It was clear from the beginning that the waiter was extremely stingy with the amount of wine he gave us as the wine pairings. We were given approximately an ounce of wine per pairing, which is absolutely ridiculous. I believe that in a 2 1/2 hour period, my husband and I each had the equivalent of 1 to 1 1/2 glass of wine.
Overall, the food was mediocre at best. The only dishes that were above average were the foie gras and the duck confit. My husband liked the quail but I found it completely inedible.
The worst problem, however, was the horrible service. My husband and I felt entirely ignored. There were two other couples sitting at tables in the same room as we were and they did not order the more expensive chef's tasting menu, yet they were given much better service than my husband and me. We felt entirely ignored. There were at least 3 15-20 minute time stretches during which waitstaff did not acknowledge our presence, much less give us any food (including bread) or drink.
We had heard a lot of good things about the Lodge and I had read the reviews on this page, but it did not come close to living up to its reputation. I will NEVER return to this restaurant nor will I recommend it to anyone.
My husband and I are foodies and we typically go to Le Reve for special occasions. Le Reve is perfection so perhaps it is not fair to compare The Lodge and Le Reve, but The Lodge is not even 1/10th of the restaurant Le Reve is and we could have gone to Le Reve and ordered Andrew Weisman's tasting menu along with a wine pairing for only $100 more than the Lodge and had a night to remember. Instead, I am only left with a bad taste in my mouth and anger over very bad service on what should have been a very special occasion. Thank you The Lodge for ruining our anniversary.
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I took my wife and son to The Lodge for Valentine's Day dinner, and we were all simply amazed. The drive in really sets the tone, and the valet was very friendly. Duane was our server, and he was incredible. Nothing escaped his attention from clearing the table to helping my son cut his steak, and he made it all look effortless. The menu for dinner was varied enough to satisfy and eight year-old as well as two adults. I especially recommend the pork belly and the duck, but as my wife noticed, the biggest problem we had was that we always wanted more!
If you are travelling through, or if you are from the area looking for a special evening, this place has to be at the top of your list.
First, let me just say that our experience at the Lodge was an incredible introduction to the "foodie" culture.
I called for a last minute, same day reservation, which I was accommodated without a problem; our reservation was for three (wife, son and me). The incredible experience started with the beautiful drive up the drive way. We had actually arrived one hour early and planned to sit bar side until our reservation time, but we were taken directly in. We sat in a very low key, cozy two table room upstairs. The table was decorated tastefully with white crisp linen with a practical table setting. I enjoyed that it was not pretentious with five forks and spoons. The only down fall was the room echoed slightly, but that just encouraged us to speak "romantically" to each other. The menu is very straightforward with very little flexibility, but we had no problem with it. My wife and I had Chef Jason Dady's Signature Tasting with wine pairings and my son had the same without the wine. Someone else criticized the menu, but Chef Dady is like an artist and we indulged in his eight course masterpiece. The first course was the scallops and they just melted in our mouth. The third course crab meat pasta was the overall favorite, but my wife raved the chocolate a souffle in the last course. The service was impeccable and our server was knowledgeable. Also, the wine parings were exquisitely done and brought out the complexity of each dish. I will definitely recommend this restaurant to all of my friends. Though our final tab was well over $350, the experience was worthwhile. My wife and I plan to return, since we noticed the menu changed with the addition of duck.
Good food and excellent service. The food was good and the wine pairings were excellent! Our server was Duane and he was most attentive and knowledgeable. We were seated in an upper room with two other tables which made it not as cozy as it could have been. This arrangement made it hard to have a private conversation without being overheard. The seats were not very comfortable either. I cannot say enough about the wine pairings; they were well-thought out with each course.
Perfect evening at a spectacular restraunt.
Being somewhat new to the San Antonio area and not having been to many of the five star establishments in the area, The Lodge was suggested to me by a friend at work. I was looking for a spot to take my wife on our 12th anniversary, this was the perfect spot.
I had purchased a diamond ring and wanted to present it to her in a place that would be forever etched in her memory, and needless to say she will never forget the night that we enjoyed together. The romantic ambiance was perfect for the occasion, the food was spectacular and the service was impeccable.
After our dining experience, the server (having been told of my plans to present the ring) escorted us to a table downstairs in the lounge area where I presented the ring to her while enjoying a night cap. Perfect evening!!!
Editorial Review. Cozy yet upscale restaurant serves tasty New American dishes prepared by acclaimed Chef Jason Dady.
Best in SA. This place is just wonderful. My husband and i did the 5 course menu and the portion sizes were perfect and the food was absolutely delicious. A total treat to your taste buds!!!! The whole ambiance was great, very romantic and relaxed. It has the feel of a nice british pub..with the old house and the decor and soft lighting. If you are looking for a new experience, great food and romance- check this place out!!
Perfect Experience for a Special Occassion.
The Lodge is a great evening, a spectacular one. The setting is a classic vintage house reminiscent in a way of the great Majestic Theatre in ambience. It's the perfect candlelight setting. The menu is original and very appealing. The wait staff can tell you about each selection perfectly AND they proceed through the evening at your pace. The food is wonderful and fun. This is a grand place for special occassions and festive group dinners. The Creme Brulee here is choice. Go early and have a drink in their small and very cool bar and saty late as well. This is a place to have an evening and linger into the night.
It is pricey, but very well worth it. Also check out their sister restaurant, Bin 555, it is not quite as expensive and serves many of the same dishes.
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