What happens when an Italian restaurant in Washington, DC gets 80 bad Yelp reviews and boasts a one-star rating? The Washington Post sends out a writer to see if it’s a case of “Yelp bullying” or if the poor reviews are earned. Based on the resulting story I’d say there was some wisdom from this Yelp crowd:
You could argue that Pasta Italiana, like that tackling dummy, has been designed for abuse. The place sets itself up for a fight before you take a bite: It trumpets the word “organic” on the front door. Its wait staff may or may not, depending on whom you ask, claim the pasta is made in-house.
The place all but has a “Kick Me” sign taped to its back.
And kick it you will once the food arrives. The garlic-cream sauce draped over flabby, overcooked cheese ravioli was chunky and lukewarm; if there was garlic in the sauce, only a beagle could detect it. The gnocchi was a mountain of gluey pasta covered in a meat sauce many degrees shy of hot; the gnocchi sat on the plate, solid and immovable, as if molded from clay. The lobster ravioli came stuffed with a stringy mixture speckled with tiny dices of the advertised crustacean but tasting more like crab sticks.
Sounds like you can safely keep this one off your dinner list the next time you’re in DC.