We only made the reservation by telephone the day before, and were asked if we were celebrating anything? I replied that we were celebrating a birthday, but when we arrived and the hostess asked, we explained that there were two in our party, each celebrating birthdays within the week. We were seated promptly in a comfortable booth, with a special birthday placard to alert our server.
He was competent, and attentive, but didn't show the warmth or friendliness of the others (the woman who answered the phone, and the hostess) throughout our meal service. We had the pear and Gorgonzola salad, a mixed salad, and shared a Caesar salad that was of moderate serving size, all very good, and then each had a pasta dish. Gaetano's Pink Sauce was featured on three of them, and was absolutely delicious. LOVED the Chicken Cannelloni which doesn't seem to be common on many Italian menus outside of Italy anymore.
Despite enjoying a LOT of the fabulous pasta, we were served two dishes (for the two birthdays) of spumoni, gratis, with candles, and the sound system was switched to an Italian-sounding rendition of "Happy Birthday." It was extremely nice without being horridly embarrassing or over-the-top.
We were impressed that in lieu of offering one serving of spumoni, they brought one for each. And while I thought I didn't like spumoni, what we were served was absolutely fantastic. This spumoni, instead of having bits of candied fruit (which is perhaps authentic spumoni?) had bits of chocolate and small pieces of Maraschino cherries. I would go out of my way to go back to Gaetano's for this spumoni, and normally, I don't care that much about dessert, period.
In all, this was a four and a half star, close to five star experience, lowered only by the care-less attitude of our server. The menu offers something for every diner - save room for the spumoni!
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