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porkpa

Matteos in Boca Raton

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I was in South Florida on business last week. My lady friend came down from NYC to join me over the weekend. Her mother and step father spend their winters in Boca. They are respectively 87 and 92 years old. They are in reasonably good shape for their ages, but they are obviously not spring chickens.

They wanted to eat at Matteos, because they always had enjoyed the food at Matteos in Roslyn NY.

I called to make a reservation, but was told that they didn't take reservations. I mentioned that we had two very old people in our party who probably would find it uncomfortable to stand around for any length of time. I was assured that if we arived by 6.30 we would have no problem getting seated quickly.

I dropped them off at the door at 6.15 while I went to park the car. I entered the restaurant five minutes later and was told by Carol(my ladyfriend) that there would be a ten minute wait for a table. Certainly no great problem. At the time, we and another couple were the only parties waiting to be seated. As we waited numerous other people arrived. Most of, if not all of them appeared to be known to the host as evidenced by the numerous handshakes and hugs.

The first party to be seated was the other couple who were there when we arrived. Thereafter at least twenty tables of people who got there after us were seated. Needless to say I was not happy. I told the host that we had already been standing for over a half hour when we were told the wait would be ten minutes. He said that we were next and then proceeded to seat three other tables of people who had just walked in. The old folks had to be pretty tired.

Finally, after 45 minutes of waiting we were seated. From that point on things went well. The food was decent and plentiful. Our waiter was excellent.

If it had been just Carol and I, we would have left after ten minutes of waiting and gone elsewhere. However the old folks wanted this place and it was a schlep getting them in and out of the SUV, so we waited it out.

I wouldn't have been at all upset if it was a question of waiting for available tables which hadn't cleared. What really bothered me was the many parties who were seated well before us even though they had arrived well after.

In the end the old folks were pleased with dinner(although quite tired), having had a good meal, but also at least two more meals in leftovers that they took home with them.

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Lots of it. Mostly good southern Italian Americanized. Heavy and tasty. Standouts were the side dishes and appetizers - baked clams, broccoli rabe, burnt broccoli, burnt green beans, fried zucchini strips. My main was chicken francaise. They gave me three good sized pieces. By the time we got to the mains I was virtually full. Even though it was very good, I stopped at one piece. The old folks took the remaining two home. The pasta was fine, but again far too much.

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This place is on Federal Highway right?

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This treatment is disgraceful, particularly so because of the age of the party. Even following the most basic rules of etiquette, much less hospitality, this should never have happened. I'm just baffled sometimes by the service in South Fla restaurants.

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