Middlesex, NJ 08846
When looking to celebrate my birthday, I had a serious Italian craving and wanted to try a new restaurant. Vincenzo's kept coming up as recommended in my searches, so that's where we decided to go.
Since first impressions mean a lot, let me start there. The atmosphere is very nice. It's classy but casual--I didn't feel out of place in my work clothes, and I didn't think my husband was out of place in jeans and a tshirt. They have a small bar, where some people were having pre dinner drinks. When we walked in, we asked for a high chair, but were told they only have booster seats. Generally, this would be ok for us, but since my 17 month old son was not interested in sitting still and sliding out of the strapless booster seat, my husband ended up eating with Squirmy in his lap. Next, there's not really a kid's menu, but we were told we could choose any pasta in a half portion. Ok, so they're not exactly kid-friendly, but they're kid accommodating.
We were greeted with waters around and bruschetta appetizer, along with a really yummy bread basket. I'd read that the Antipasto appetizer is excellent, and without this knowledge, my husband suggested we order it. It was excellent indeed, with the most delicious prosciutto I've ever had (I'm generally not a fan, but this was yum), super fresh mozzarella, a variety of olives, and other yummies. It was a big platter, and well worth the $9.95.
As far as entrees, my husband chose chicken marsala, I chose shrimp with crabmeat, and the boys split a half order of pasta with marinara sauce. I ordered a glass of house wine, my husband had an iced tea, and we ordered 2 milks for the boys. Both our meals came with a delicious house salad, with mixed greens (hooray for salads without iceberg lettuce!). My husband's also arrived with a side of penne with marinara (a strange sauce choice, given his marsala entree, but I know this is pretty standard). He really liked his meal, and it was enough that he saved half for lunch the next day. I was so full from the bread, bruschetta, antipasto, and salad, I only had a few bites of mine, which came over a bed of spaghetti. Mine was tasty, though something seemed to be missing; I think I'd have preferred lumps of crabmeat rather than tiny shreds of it.
Overall, we were happy with our meals, but then the check arrived. We didn't ask for clarification, since we were in a hurry to get out with our now unhappy boys (certainly not the restaurant or server's fault at all), but we were charged almost as much for a cup of pasta and sauce (the half order) as if we'd order a full plate of penne with vodka sauce (We were charged $12.99, the full size penne with vodka, which likely would have come with salad was $14.99). Our drink order (not broken down, but a glass of house wine, an iced tea, and two milks) came to $14.50. I guess I should have asked for prices before ordering everything, since none of these items had prices on the menu, but I did expect to pay closer to $6-10 for the kid's meals, and it seems like our drinks were on the high side too.
Luckily, we had a restaurant.com certificate, but I felt ripped off as I left. The atmosphere is nice, the food is decent, but the prices and lack of kid friendliness means we won't be back to Vincenzo's.