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“Growing Pains”

Pomodori Bistro & Wine Bar
Ranked #10 of 300 Restaurants in Medford
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$10 - US$23
Cuisines: Italian, Wine Bar
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Romantic, Groups, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Child-friendly
Dining options: Lunch, After-hours, Dinner, Reservations
Description: Great local bistro that has been doing a great lunch and dinner business here in medford since 2008. We specialize in northern style cooking with our own northwest flair. Using local ingredients when we can. We have the largest local wine selection in the area. And also one of the first to have local really quality red and white wines on tap as well.
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
191 reviews
147 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Growing Pains”
Reviewed 3 November 2013

Dang! I really really wanted to like the new Pomodori. I had been to the former location quite a few times and always loved it. So here goes, in the spirit of constructive criticism.

The dinner hours are very strange, even for quiet downtown Medford. Dinner hours from 4PM-8PM on a Friday night was very odd. I had to rush to get there before 8PM and it was packed with diners who obviously made the “early to bed” adjustment. For a fine dining establishment, I suggest at least modifying the hours to 5PM-9PM.

The new décor is excellent, with lots of exposed brick, and it is much lighter and modern than at the old location. I liked the small hanging lights, dropped at differing lengths (except that the lowest one at the bar was blinding and I had to move away from it). The bar area is beautiful, with very attractive displays and a nice sliding ladder to reach the higher items. My only negative comment about the ambiance centers on the two single tables perched in the windows on either side of the entrance. The venue probably used to be a small store of some sort with the usual merchandise display windows. So the owners just put one table up high on each of the raised window display areas. The impression from the outside was reminiscent of the windows in the red light district in Amsterdam! Why not just perform some minor construction and lower those two tables to floor level?

So on to the wine list. The restaurant had an excellent selection of wines by the glass and by bottle, with great emphasis on the wines of Oregon. I tried a sample of their house red (an Oregon blend) and did not like it at all. I then asked to try a merlot and discovered that it was one of their “keg” wines, wines which gushed from some hidden source and created lots of bubbles as it was dispensed. I knew I wasn’t going to like it and I was right. No “keg” wines for me. I finally settled on a delicious Oregon zin and was very happy with that choice.

As for service, I could tell at a glance that the restaurant was overwhelmed by a full house, compounded by their huge menu of more than 30 main courses. Staff seemed a little frazzled. Due to the crowd and no reservation, I sat at the bar. Service was not the best, but ameliorated by the gregarious bartender/server. I still chuckle as I remember him continually referring to me as “boss”. I found it ingratiating, although I was mentally transported to the chain gang in the movie “Cool Hand Luke”, where the officers were always referred to as “boss”.

I was not offered an appetizer menu, although I noticed one later as I was leaving. The menu I was given only offered main courses which included a soup or salad. Prices were very reasonable for everything. The salad plate I selected was large and contained assorted less than crisp greens, but the other condiments and dressing sort of compensated (garbanzos, cucumbers, etc.). So I ordered Pork Chop Saltimbocca stuffed with sun dried tomatoes and gorgonzola. I was a little hesitant about this combination, but decided to try it anyway. It was not a good marriage. The sundried tomatoes and the gorgonzola just did not blend well, and there was so much of the stuffing that the pork chop seemed to be an afterthought. Luckily I scraped off most of the stuffing after about two bites, and found that the pork chop could have stood on its own – it was very tender, succulent and highly flavorful. The chop was centered on a bed of orzo which would ordinarily have been a good pairing, except that the orzo was excessively greasy.

The dessert menu offered a number of excellent choices and I was very pleased with the variety. I ordered Black Forest Cake and it arrived in a large ramekin which would serve two people easily. Although it looked great, it was dry and tepid, giving me the impression that it was not baked recently and that a quick nuke was inadequate to bring it back to life and warmth.

I did not have coffee, but noticed that the coffee maker was one of those perk types which emptied into large tall thermos jugs. I didn’t see more than 2 cups poured the entire time I was there, so I guess coffee is not a big seller (surprising in a town with an unusually large number of funky little drive-by coffee kiosks). Anyway, I do not know how they would do espresso or cappuccino, but at some point if profits allow, I would recommend an investment in real upscale coffee equipment.

I really want this restaurant to succeed and notice that most of the other reviews are much more positive. It was just not on point for me on this first visit to the new venue, and I regret I could not give higher scores. I will return and try Pomodori again, hopefully with better results.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
4 Thank FrequentTraveller034
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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289 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
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    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Medford, Oregon
Level Contributor
24 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“The move downtown did them good!”
Reviewed 30 October 2013

We had dinner last year at the old Pomodori Ristorante out on the west side. The experience - food, service, ambience - was so bad we never went back. I happened to notice the downtown Bistro recently and, with some trepidation, decided to give it a try. Much better on all points! Good food and wine selection, and they readily exchanged a glass of wine that I found unpleasant.

The Tripadvisor map still shows the old westside location, but the downtown bistro is easy to find.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank DrDubious
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cornelius, North Carolina
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
“Great experience”
Reviewed 30 October 2013 credit card Amex Cardmember Review

another trip advisor winner. food was outstanding. service and seating was perfect for the business entertaining occasion.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank Thomas D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
White City, Oregon, United States
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Delicious meal, well-timed service!”
Reviewed 12 October 2013

My husband and I celebrated our anniversary at Pomodori Bistro after finding it on TripAdvisor and it definitely lived up to it's #1 rating! We shared a delicious appetizer portioned perfectly for two, and enjoyed salads and memorable entrees. My husband ordered the special and loved it, I had scallops with pesto linguine and am looking forward to warming my leftovers shortly! The restaurant space is intimate and comfortable with a gorgeous bare brick wall. One if the things that struck us the most was the impeccable timing of service. There was just the right amount of time between finishing a course and the next being served, with the entree arriving piping hot - something you don't always get at bigger "box" restaurants. While I'm sure you could bring small children here, we would not bring our three young ones. The food is much too good to have to rush through should one become discontented, and the ambiance too pleasant to have it potentially disrupted. I do look forward to bringing them when they are older. In the interim I can't wait to return with my husband, friends, parents, etc. The bill was pleasantly received, much less than expected for the quality of food and service.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Jenny N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxnard
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“If ever in Medford again, will definitely go back!”
Reviewed 30 September 2013

My husband and I were on a three week road trip. One of our stops for the night was Medford. We had been driving all day and it was almost 8:00 pm by the time we arrived, so rather than going straight to our hotel, we decided to have dinner first. I had read about Pomodori Bistro on Trip Advisory before we left home and it had gotten good reviews, so we plugged it into our GPS and found it. We arrived about 8:10 and were told they stopped serving at 8:00. The waiter must have seen the disappointed looks on our faces, so he said he would go into the kitchen and see if they could still accommodate us. He came back and said yes, we could still have dinner and he seated us and took our drink and food order right away.
I should have written down what we had, but I was so weary of driving all day. I do remember however, that whatever we had, it was delicious! Both my husband and I commented on how good the food was. Not just the food, but the service! Our waiter was so efficient with a warm, friendly personality. I do not recall his name, but his server # is 0006. The date we had dinner there was 9/12/2013. I highly recommend this restaurant if ever in Medford!!

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank Betty I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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