For this year’s Bronx Restaurant Week, I wanted to try something completely new. While looking over the list of participating restaurants, the first one that stood out to me was Oregano. It was listed as Franco-Iberian, which piqued my curiosity. Like, how many Franco-Iberian places do you run into in the Bronx? Last Saturday, Boyfriend and I headed out to Riverdale (which you know was a trek for us) to check it out.
Pros: The decor is amazing and the place is huge! There’s a separate room for private parties with a sort of garden vibe going on. The main dining area has a vintage French theme. Bf ordered the Mexican Firing Squad from the cocktail menu, which contained illegal Mezcal and chile peppers. What I really liked is that the bartender brought the drink over himself and told us a bit about the drink’s background.
Cons: Okay, so being the intrepid reporter that I am, I made sure to call the restaurant on Thursday to verify that they would have the Savor the Bronx prix fixe dinner on the weekend, even though the website and printed brochure did not indicate any limitations. The woman who answered said they would. Great. When we arrived, at around 3:45 pm, we were told that they were still serving brunch. I asked the hostess when lunch would begin, since lunch and dinner were the prix fixe-eligible meals. She said around, 5. I know New Yorkers eat a lot later than in other places, but 5 is really late to start serving lunch. But, we’d come all that way, so fine, brunch it would be.
However, when I went to order the unlimited mimosas special, the waiter informed me that because brunch was about to end at 4 and unlimited mimosas run for two hours, the deal would be invalid. Okay, so we’ll look at the lunch menu. There is no lunch menu, I’ll get you the dinner menu. Sure. At this point, I’m already done with this place and I haven’t even eaten yet. Upon receiving the menu, I didn’t see anything about Savor the Bronx or anything similar, so I asked if there was a different menu for Bronx restaurant week and gesture to the brochure that I picked up in the restaurant and was told that there was not.
I ordered the Poitrine de Poulet a la Moutarde, which is grilled chicken and vegetables in a “sauvignon lime and oregano sauce.” The chicken itself was nothing mind-blowing, though the sauce gave it a nice flavor. The grilled vegetables were pretty good, though. Bf ordered a lamb burger which came with a side of parmesan-seasoned french fries. I don’t like lamb, but he’s the exact opposite and said that it lacked seasoning. The fries were good, but again nothing special.
As we were leaving, a new hostess was attending to an elderly couple who sat in the booth next to us. They asked if there were any specials and wouldn’t you know it, she brought out the Savor the Bronx menu (I could tell by the logo on top) and said that they weren’t offering it on weekends, but they could feel free to order one of the dishes if they wanted. At that point, our check had already been paid and I really just wanted to leave.
It’s evident to me that there is a serious lack of communication at Oregano. There’s no reason there should be so much conflicting information here. Now, whether there was a misprint on the Savor the Bronx website and brochure is one thing, but of course there’s no misprint during a phone call. Even knowing when lunch or dinner starts seems to be a problem. It’s unfortunate, it seems like it would be a nice place to hang out with friends or family, but I don’t see me going out of my way again when there’s all this confusion.