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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Tom Ragland ()
Date: April 29, 2008 02:59PM

We tried Alto Plaza last night:

Lounge area: Very friendly, excellent service; solid wine menu and appetizers.

Restaurant: Absolutely delightful - excellent steak and seafood selections; we found the portions reasonable and the food service 4 star.

Will recommend it to friends.

Tom

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: What shifts do you work? ()
Date: April 29, 2008 03:11PM

You sound like you're in the business.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: rob ()
Date: May 05, 2008 01:39PM

I predict it will be close in the next 18 months. It's not easy to get to, large, well-built balconies and porches overlooking great vies of the parking lot and the other strip centers down Rte 29.....

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Spics ()
Date: May 05, 2008 03:52PM

And the beaner valets go through your shit!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Jeff S.-no shirt,no shoes,no dice ()
Date: May 07, 2008 01:34PM

You mean Centreville has strip centers - no way mon! That's awesome - I wonder what type of girls work there?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Spics ()
Date: May 07, 2008 02:17PM

The valets' sisters.:)

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: formerhick76 ()
Date: May 07, 2008 11:20PM

What sort of place in Centreville can't even offer you lots of parking? I mean, around Tysons and points inward, sure.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: YIAHOO ()
Date: May 08, 2008 05:48PM

Alto Plaza is not a very good place to eat.

If you want to be where the has beens of centreville once ruled, it may be your place.

I have eaten there three times.

Each time i would rate 5/10

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: i like it ()
Date: May 08, 2008 11:51PM

I went to alto plaza about 2 nights ago. It was my 3rd time going and let me just say every time i go there the menu is different. It has improved alot. There's alot to choose from. Great selection of food. I had some shrimp and my friend had some steak...both excellent....drinks were too. They have a new cocktail menu as well as some new wine. I do plan on going back. Sometimes i wonder that the ppl who write on here either have some kind personal issues with ppl in the workplace or just hate spanish ppl ...b/c the place is great and food is excellent.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Okay buddy ()
Date: May 09, 2008 11:18AM

Wow. You are so not a customer. Douchebag.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: TECHNOVIKING ()
Date: May 09, 2008 11:48AM

Alto plaza lacks two things that makes a true techno Viking happy, Proper spirits such as Meade or Ale and Mutton and TECHNO MUSIC TO DANCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: WashingToneLocian ()
Date: May 19, 2008 01:46PM

For all those who hate the Alto Plaza because it is in Centreville, I just want to remind you that Centreville has clueless, pretentious people too who are willing to put a dinner for four on their home equity line of credit just for appearances.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: zohan ()
Date: May 19, 2008 02:30PM

This is not why we hate the Alto.


WashingToneLocian Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> For all those who hate the Alto Plaza because it
> is in Centreville, I just want to remind you that
> Centreville has clueless, pretentious people too
> who are willing to put a dinner for four on their
> home equity line of credit just for appearances.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Erin T. ()
Date: May 24, 2008 07:22PM

My husband and I have been there three times. The first time I got the filet and it was great. For both the second and third times I got the skirt steak with mashed potatoes. It is soooooo good! The Alto Plaza salad is fantastic-the dressing is unmatched. I enjoy the fact that we do not have to travel any longer if we are interested in having a nice meal in a beautiful place.

I understand some of the comments about working the kinks out with a new restaurant etc. but I am shocked that in such an educated area filled with a very diverse population that some of the comments have been posted and that they have been tolerated. It is unwise to listen to anyone's opinion about a restaurant who discusses the race/ethnicity of the valet guys (who by the way are not the ethnicity that was mentioned above).

The restaurant deserves a chance-go ahead and try it and decide for yourself! If you do not like that style of food; latin influenced dishes, then that should be the reason not to go.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Die ()
Date: May 27, 2008 01:13PM

Are you gonna give your staff a heads up before firing them so they can find new jobs? Or are you going to keep this fantasy bullshit alive about it being the goto place in the Ville. Lone Star, Shark Club, O'Meara's, Border Cafe, Don Pablos. Alto Plaza.......sooner or later they all go under..especially when they suck donkey balls....oh, nice valet service. Assholes, like I need a beaner illegally parking my shit at your moms palm reading gas station. Down with the Alto. Douchebags who go there can kiss my ass. That place is the biggest eyesore in town. Fucking jackholes.


Erin T. Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> My husband and I have been there three times. The
> first time I got the filet and it was great. For
> both the second and third times I got the skirt
> steak with mashed potatoes. It is soooooo good!
> The Alto Plaza salad is fantastic-the dressing is
> unmatched. I enjoy the fact that we do not have
> to travel any longer if we are interested in
> having a nice meal in a beautiful place.
>
> I understand some of the comments about working
> the kinks out with a new restaurant etc. but I am
> shocked that in such an educated area filled with
> a very diverse population that some of the
> comments have been posted and that they have been
> tolerated. It is unwise to listen to anyone's
> opinion about a restaurant who discusses the
> race/ethnicity of the valet guys (who by the way
> are not the ethnicity that was mentioned above).
>
>
> The restaurant deserves a chance-go ahead and try
> it and decide for yourself! If you do not like
> that style of food; latin influenced dishes, then
> that should be the reason not to go.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: In response to "DIE" ()
Date: May 28, 2008 10:39AM

Dude you seriously have issues. Your reasons for hating Alto Plaza definitely have to be personal. I dont understand why you hate it so much.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: You can die too. ()
Date: May 28, 2008 11:49AM

You are so right about that.


In response to "DIE" Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Dude you seriously have issues. Your reasons for
> hating Alto Plaza definitely have to be personal.
> I dont understand why you hate it so much.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: coffin ()
Date: May 28, 2008 07:21PM

Why all the emotion over a stinkin' restaurant?

If enough people like it, it will stay....if not, it will fold. Who gives a fuck (other than it's owners)?


PS: I haven't eaten in ANY type of restaurant in over 30 years...too nasty in the kitchen.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: SE ()
Date: May 28, 2008 10:01PM

I went tonight for crappy hour and I have to say my strawberry bellini SUCKED. SO NOT WORTH $9.50. So I decided to switch it up and try something else, and ordered some pineapple drink off of the "specialty drink" menu...so what does the waiter bring me? Another strawberry bellini. We ordered some chips & guac, and the guac was nasty- way too lemony. They have better guac at Chipotle. I'll give it another shot but I was not impressed for my first time there. It is nice inside though.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: RESton Peace ()
Date: May 29, 2008 09:19AM

My review was a parody of a review in the fairfax journal or some other local rag. The guy went into obsessive detail and I wanted to match that. Sorry if anyone's own inadequacies made them unable to find the humor in an obviously exaggerated review. I admit I failed at being funny.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: TomSietsema ()
Date: May 31, 2008 08:19AM


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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: ITRADE ()
Date: May 31, 2008 08:53AM

OUCH. That hurts. I usually trust Tom's reviews.

Sorry Alto, after reading that, I won't be making the drive.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: DG ()
Date: May 31, 2008 11:52AM

That review was nothing less than brutal. Christ.

Uhh - we need to get the propositions going on the replacement business. I still take something freakin' Korean.

Dry clean on 1st. Nail salon on 2nd. Grocery on 3rd.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Mike Sorce ()
Date: May 31, 2008 04:25PM

TomSietsema Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Ouch...
>
> http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/artic
> le/2008/05/29/AR2008052903297.html


This has to be the worst review that I have every seen from Tom. Not even 1 star, just [Poor]. Seriously...it must really be awful since he went there several times with different people and it always sucked. We had been planning to meet some friends there for dinner, but not after this. Alto Plaza sounds like an Applebee's or TGI Friday's that is trying to go upscale and failed miserably.

Even though they attract outrageous crowds, I will stick with GAR...Coastal Flat's, Artie's, etc. The food is well-prepared, the waitstaff is well-trained and the menu is diverse without overreaching.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Al ()
Date: June 04, 2008 10:58PM

fuck the review...make the drive... try the food and u be the judge....fuck the fairfax underground....

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: LOL ()
Date: June 05, 2008 09:57PM

I live 5 minutes from there and I won't go again.


Al Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> fuck the review...make the drive... try the food
> and u be the judge....fuck the fairfax
> underground....

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: ferfux ()
Date: June 05, 2008 10:06PM

ive been there. I told the server to Kiss the Chubby and the server got a bigger tip

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ALTO FART
Posted by: luke ()
Date: June 27, 2008 10:40AM

Alto Plaza stinks like a bad fart.........this place is a huge disaster.......8 million dollar pile of dogshit.......they need to cut their losses and head for the border....ITS OOOOOOOOOOVER

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Holie Olie
Posted by: OlieThe ExGoalie ()
Date: July 03, 2008 01:38PM

"Alto Plaza, introduced in January by four investors as part of the locally owned Sangria Inc., isn't a complete "Waterworld." This customer appreciated the free valet parking and the red wine served at the proper cool temperature. Dinner on the third floor includes a decent pianist (Thursday through Saturday) and a jazz trio (following the piano on Saturday). Also, I finished every bite of the tres leches cake, and not just because I barely touched the appetizer and entree that preceded the fluffy and comforting dessert.

If Alto Plaza were a mom and pop operation, you'd never read about it here. Why expend time and space on a bad little place in an exurb? But this restaurant is a million-dollar mess, in desperate need of deep cleaning. "


TS.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Mike Jones ()
Date: July 03, 2008 10:46PM

I was invited with a co-worker to alto plaza for a business lunch. I had my reservations about the place, but our clients insisted on this place. Lets just say the waiter lacked experience. The food was below average, what would have been a 1 hour lunch took 2.5 hours with all the delays in getting the order correctly. The service was so bad the manager offered us a free dessert, and after waiting another 20 minutes the desserts where all wrong. Lets just say that alto plaza is not worth the $$$, new management, Chef, and staff are desperately needed. Possibly changing the name to La Plaza Baja!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: horrifying ()
Date: July 26, 2008 08:58AM

the place sucks

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 26, 2008 10:04AM

I drove by it again the other day. There seems to have been a huge capital layout for a restaurant. Margins in the food industry are incredibly small in the first place. I can't imagine how, with the cost to air condition, heat and maintain this facility, this place will stay in business, even if it were good.

Some people simply shouldn't be given business loans.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 26, 2008 12:20PM

There is no way they got a business loan for that thing. The owners have to have pretty deep pockets--even in the era of easy money a couple of years ago nobody would have given that kind of cash to first time restaurant owners. They might have gotten so loans secured by other assets--home equity and such--but certainly not a business loan. I'm wondering how long it will take before they get tired of burning through cash and decide to get out. I'm guess they are probably losing 100k/month or more.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 26, 2008 04:27PM

I stopped by there this afternoon for a beer. When I got there, there was one other person there. He left shortly after and I was the only person there--in the entire place. As far as I could tell. Ten minutes later or so another party of four came in but they didn't order anything and seemed to be somehow involved. The end is probably near.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 26, 2008 05:20PM

Dude Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I stopped by there this afternoon for a beer.
> When I got there, there was one other person
> there. He left shortly after and I was the only
> person there--in the entire place. As far as I
> could tell. Ten minutes later or so another party
> of four came in but they didn't order anything and
> seemed to be somehow involved. The end is
> probably near.



It will be interesting to see what happens to the building when the restaurant closes. Office suites?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 26, 2008 05:25PM

I really can't imagine how they'll get out. They reportedly spent 16M on the place. Of course, no one else will give them anywhere close to that. Nothing else will work any better there without substantial changes. I really do feel sorry for them--this will be a hard, expensive lesson.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 26, 2008 05:29PM

Dude Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I really can't imagine how they'll get out. They
> reportedly spent 16M on the place. Of course, no
> one else will give them anywhere close to that.
> Nothing else will work any better there without
> substantial changes. I really do feel sorry for
> them--this will be a hard, expensive lesson.



They won't get out. They will be foreclosed on. The building will probably sit vacant or with only one or two tenants for several years until the thing is torn down or "re-purposed" for a few million more.

Dumb, dumb, dumb....

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Re: Good, but not Great
Posted by: priapus ()
Date: July 27, 2008 07:59PM

Where's the porn shop?

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Re: Good, but not Great
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 27, 2008 09:12PM

The porn shop closed a few weeks ago...

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Destro ()
Date: July 28, 2008 10:59AM

I don't know why this place has such bad reviews, every time I have been there the food has been very good and the service was good as well. I plan to go back and have recommended it to friends who have liked it as well.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 28, 2008 11:43AM

Destro Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I don't know why this place has such bad reviews,
> every time I have been there the food has been
> very good and the service was good as well. I plan
> to go back and have recommended it to friends who
> have liked it as well.


Even if the food is good, I don't know how you generate enough money to keep this three-story, $16 million behemoth operating. To top it off, they have a flash animation website that takes forever to load, even on a broadband line. This thing is a fiasco.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 28, 2008 12:52PM

It isn't unheard of to spend that kind of money on a restaurant. The Great American restaurant group spends close to that--I think they spent 12M on Coastal Flats and in the same range for the Sweetwater location down the street. I believe they spent about 2M on the new outdoor bar at the Centrevill location. The difference, of course, is that Great American knows what they are doing.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 28, 2008 02:43PM

Dude Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It isn't unheard of to spend that kind of money on
> a restaurant. The Great American restaurant group
> spends close to that--I think they spent 12M on
> Coastal Flats and in the same range for the
> Sweetwater location down the street. I believe
> they spent about 2M on the new outdoor bar at the
> Centrevill location. The difference, of course,
> is that Great American knows what they are doing.


I guess you could look at it from this standpoint. Would Great American Restaurants build a building like Alto Plaza for a Sweetwater Grill?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 28, 2008 03:05PM

Not a chance, no.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: TRIED IT ()
Date: July 29, 2008 08:32AM

I went there last week. Alot of loud talkers who earn 30k a year.

the food is atrocious.

for the same money i could have gone to cap Pell's

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: just ()
Date: July 30, 2008 08:04AM

Dude Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It isn't unheard of to spend that kind of money on
> a restaurant. The Great American restaurant group
> spends close to that--I think they spent 12M on
> Coastal Flats and in the same range for the
> Sweetwater location down the street. I believe
> they spent about 2M on the new outdoor bar at the
> Centrevill location. The difference, of course,
> is that Great American knows what they are doing.


The outdoor bar is nice in Centreville. But paying $2 mil for that is ridiculous, don't see the justification for the expense just to move the customers that already there outside.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 30, 2008 09:11AM

just Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Dude Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > It isn't unheard of to spend that kind of money
> on
> > a restaurant. The Great American restaurant
> group
> > spends close to that--I think they spent 12M on
> > Coastal Flats and in the same range for the
> > Sweetwater location down the street. I believe
> > they spent about 2M on the new outdoor bar at
> the
> > Centrevill location. The difference, of
> course,
> > is that Great American knows what they are
> doing.
>
>
> The outdoor bar is nice in Centreville. But paying
> $2 mil for that is ridiculous, don't see the
> justification for the expense just to move the
> customers that already there outside.

That patio thing didn't cost $2 million, did it? I would think something like that would run a couple hundred grand at most.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 30, 2008 09:14AM

My sources tell me it was 2 million. It's not too hard for me to believe--go have another look at it. Commercial construction is very expensive--the county imposes very strict standards about how things have to be done. New foundation, lots of plumbing and electrical work, and very high quality materials and workmanship. In addition, look at all the custom art work they have. They have deep pockets.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: just ()
Date: July 30, 2008 09:20AM

I am not disbuting that it cost $2 mil. But why spend that much on an outside bar. It will not generate enough extra income to justify the expense. Thats all.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Destro ()
Date: July 30, 2008 09:32AM

just Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I am not disbuting that it cost $2 mil. But why
> spend that much on an outside bar. It will not
> generate enough extra income to justify the
> expense. Thats all.

Have you ever seen how busy the outdoor patio gets at Coastal Flats. Outdoor patios at restaurants=$!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 30, 2008 09:44AM

Dude Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> My sources tell me it was 2 million. It's not too
> hard for me to believe--go have another look at
> it. Commercial construction is very
> expensive--the county imposes very strict
> standards about how things have to be done. New
> foundation, lots of plumbing and electrical work,
> and very high quality materials and workmanship.
> In addition, look at all the custom art work they
> have. They have deep pockets.


Last year I was in involved in a pretty extensive commercial construction project that involved much more electrical work and covered a much larger space and it didn't come anywhere near $2 million. If it did run that much, the company got ripped off.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: TheMeeper ()
Date: July 30, 2008 09:48AM

Investing 2 million dollars for an outdoor patio on Connecticut Avenue in NW DC would sound like a good idea. Investing 2 mil for an outdoor patio along Route 29 in Centreville does not.

I'm not knocking the place, I had a good meal there... it just seems a little too ambitious for its location.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: DAG ()
Date: July 31, 2008 12:55PM

The WaPo review was the final nail. Considering the review, you have to be an idiot to walk into that place willing to pay alot of money expecting an outstanding meal.

Some will go anyway, but I assure you it will not be enough to keep it afloat.

It's gone by 01/01/09.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: July 31, 2008 12:58PM

I know what will fix it...

kitchen.jpg

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: July 31, 2008 01:06PM

Now THAT would be good t.v.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: is it that serious? ()
Date: August 04, 2008 10:48PM

TO the person who said it will be gone by 1/1/09 ...guess wat...everyone who first wrote in this blog said it will be gone by summer 2008...guess wat? SUmmer is almost over and alto plaza is still here.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: i like it ()
Date: August 04, 2008 10:53PM

So i went to austin grill the other night to try the fajitas...yea i paid 17 bucks for the worlds nastiest fajitas........

my point is go to alto....they are cheaper...bigger portions...better taste....better food...pricing= not bad for what your getting. Prices are on the site

altoplaza.net


its not expensive people.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Tex ()
Date: August 05, 2008 07:03AM

Speaking of Austin Grill... They took over the location that used to be Catbo/Border Cafe. The Austin Grill in Springfield used to be my default Tex-Mex place and then a year or two ago they made some changes that I think weren't for the better. I think they switched to more pre-made food--nearly everything comes wrapped in foil now. I was glad to see them take over that location, as it is a real nice spot with pleasant outdoor seating next to a pond. I've tried it out a couple of times now and have not been that impressed with the food. Not bad, but not great. I'm hoping they'll improve.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: ITRADE ()
Date: August 05, 2008 09:18AM

If I want fajitas, I'll got to Anitas....

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Ugh ()
Date: August 05, 2008 09:31AM

Sorry, but Anitas is crap.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Erin ()
Date: August 18, 2008 03:58PM

SO who DOES have good food? The bext enchilladas I have ever has were from Pick-Up Taco in Aluts, Oklahoma...I wish I could give them $8M to move in!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: August 18, 2008 04:04PM

Ugh Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Sorry, but Anitas is crap.


Thank you. I went two times and had the same reaction both times. I have no idea why that place is held in such high regard.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: August 18, 2008 04:06PM

Erin Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> SO who DOES have good food? The bext enchilladas I
> have ever has were from Pick-Up Taco in Aluts,
> Oklahoma...I wish I could give them $8M to move
> in!


not_this_shit_again.jpg

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Dude ()
Date: September 10, 2008 07:15AM

The Alto thread has been disappointingly inactive lately. Here's my latest observation: they have a new banner advertising that kids eat free Monday-Wednesday with purchase of an adult meal. For a limited time only. Anybody been there recently and have anything to report?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: SRE ()
Date: September 10, 2008 12:14PM

Eat Kids Free?

Cool!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: ITRADE ()
Date: September 10, 2008 12:24PM

Will Dawit Abebe be the host during Eat Kids Free hour?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: DAG ()
Date: September 10, 2008 03:54PM

Kids eat free?

Christ, just what we need - another noisy baby bar.

When I go out for a nice dinner, the last thing I want to see/hear are a lot of bratty kids snotting up the restaurant.

Count me out.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: September 10, 2008 04:34PM

Dude Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The Alto thread has been disappointingly inactive
> lately. Here's my latest observation: they have a
> new banner advertising that kids eat free
> Monday-Wednesday with purchase of an adult meal.
> For a limited time only. Anybody been there
> recently and have anything to report?


You build a $16 million restaurant only to offer free meals for kids? Oh, this place is NOT going to make it.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: September 15, 2008 07:43AM

What's up with that?


From opentable.com:


Please accept our apologies on behalf of Alto Plaza. Online reservations are not available on this date at this restaurant. The third floor of the restaurant is closed for renovations until mid-October.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: unimpressed ()
Date: October 19, 2008 04:46PM

Me and a few friends visiting from California which one owns several high end clubs out there in the Newport Beach area. We were there between 6pm to about 9pm and the place had hardly anyone dining and not near enough people at the bars for happy hour. The third floor bar is open to anyone unlike what I heard here and was almost empty inside and out. They said the third floor dining was closed and did not know why. This was my first visit and all we did was drink a few drinks at the almost empty third level bar for several hours. Watched the sun set over the mountains was nice as long as you did not look down at the power poles and the ugly interchange and the junk buildings on 29.

My buddy that owns the clubs out in California said he does not know how this place has stayed open all the months they said they were open, if this is the kind of business it does. Perhaps it gets much busier later in the evening. They sure had a lot of employees working there for as empty as it was. Don't anybody take this wrong but we figured 75% of the people drinking and the few dining were Hispanic. Nothing wrong with that, but you would of thought it would be a little more diverse crowd in there.

Personally I don't know how this place is going to stay in business, especially on a friday evening nobody was dining and the drinks were happy hour prices and not near the prices on drinks that I heard on the different forums. We decided not to eat there because if the place is not busy then you would guess the food would not be fresh as it could be, but that is just a guess. All I can say good luck to these people they are going to need it.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: October 19, 2008 07:17PM

I have been in Centreville on Friday and Saturday nights. The good places are usually packed. That is saying a lot about how bad Alto Plaza must be.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: October 20, 2008 07:26AM

Seems to have been a delay in the renovations at Alto. What on earth could they be doing there? From Open Table:


Please accept our apologies on behalf of Alto Plaza. Online reservations are not available on this date at this restaurant. The third floor of the restaurant is closed for renovations until the end of November.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: unimpressed ()
Date: October 20, 2008 10:18AM

I can tell you first hand from my visit two Friday's ago there was absolutely no renovations going on in the third flood. It looked like it was set up and usable, there were table cloths and napkins on the tables. You have to walk thru the dining to get to the still usable and functioning third level bar. Either they ran out of money for the renovations or waiting on some decorators plans.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: October 20, 2008 10:41AM

Diner Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Seems to have been a delay in the renovations at
> Alto. What on earth could they be doing there?
> From Open Table:
>
>
> Please accept our apologies on behalf of Alto
> Plaza. Online reservations are not available on
> this date at this restaurant. The third floor of
> the restaurant is closed for renovations until the
> end of November.


Didn't they just build the place? What the hell are they renovating?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: October 20, 2008 10:43AM

unimpressed Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I can tell you first hand from my visit two
> Friday's ago there was absolutely no renovations
> going on in the third flood. It looked like it was
> set up and usable, there were table cloths and
> napkins on the tables. You have to walk thru the
> dining to get to the still usable and functioning
> third level bar. Either they ran out of money for
> the renovations or waiting on some decorators
> plans.


I don't know how their financing is set up. Maybe they are trying to get out of paying for that space (or taxes) since it is being "renovated." I know on lease agreements you can sometimes cut back on the rent if space isn't acceptable at the time of move-in. In any case, it seems like an indication the financial problems are starting to materialize.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: November 09, 2008 07:28AM

I dropped by Alto for a glass of wine last night to see how things where going there. On previous visits, I have found the third floor bar to be an elegant setting--no more. Before it was quiet and relaxed, now it could best be described in a single word: harsh.

There were about a dozen people there and the room was filled with smoke. The last time I was there they had not installed the glass doors separating the bar from the dining room so smoking was not yet allowed. I know it was meant to be a cigar bar, but in my opinion this is not an improvement. The materials they used in construction are hard--lots of tile, glass, and stone, very little in the way of sound dampening carpet or drapes. So even with a relatively small crowd the place is very noisy, and not in a good way. It doesn't sound busy or successful, just harsh and tinny. It doesn't help that the sound on the wide screen television is turned way up. The lighting is bright and glaring--not soft and mellow.

In any case, they needn't have worried about smoke from the AP lounge bothering diners in the adjoining room--there weren't any. This was about 8pm on a Saturday night and there was not a single table occupied in the third floor dining room. Open table has not accepted reservations there for some time so maybe they've just given up on the formal dining concept. It seems strange though--this unoccupied space. There were a handful of people in the downstairs bar. I never ventured onto the second floor so I couldn't say how many people were dining there--I did get a glimpse of a few people from the stairway though.

Alto Plaza reminds me of being on a cruise ship. This hulking multi-level monstrosity decked out in high-end materials to look lavish and luxurious. The investors must have pretty deep pockets, as I'm sure they are burning through some pretty serious cash and haven't pulled the plug yet.

I'll check back in a few more months.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: January 02, 2009 07:01PM

It's time for my Alto Plaza update. I stopped by on my way home for work for a drink. As near as I could tell there were a total of four people in the entire place. It was pretty early though (around 4:30) so I'm guessing things might have picked up a little later. I had the $12 Alto Plaza Manhattan, which I think is a fine drink if a little pricey. There was another guy drinking $2 Budweiser and a couple that were ordering happy hour specials. I can't see how they are staying in business. If they are still around in 6 months I think they are laundering money.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: ITRADE ()
Date: January 02, 2009 08:44PM

This will wind up being one of those catastrophic failures with the economy as such. Places that survive will survive by being either 1) cheap or 2) perceived as an excellent value for the money. From the vast majority of the reviews, Alto is neither of the two.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: hhh99 ()
Date: February 17, 2009 06:17PM

chihuahuamom Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Just found this information on it:
>
> Alto Plaza writes...
> Alto Plaza, located on 5800 Old Centreville Road
> in Centreville, VA will open January 10th! The
> multi-level restaurant will feature a bar/lounge
> and dining area on the ground floor and a fine
> dining establishment/cigar bar on the 3rd floor.
> The cuisine for floors one and two will be Nuevo
> Latino; the third floor, continental—steaks,
> lobster. Live music is planned on the third level.
> All three levels will have a wrap-around patio for
> al fresco dining. The interior design is a
> dramatic gold, blue and green with lush woods,
> stone mosaic and granite.
>
> Dining Style: Casual Elegant
> Cuisine: Latin American, Continental
> Neighborhood: Centreville
> Price: $31 to $50
> Website: http://www.altoplaza.net
> Email: info@altoplaza.net
> Phone: (703) 266-8811
> Hours of Operation:
> Casual Dining (1st & 2nd Fl): Monday - Saturday:
> 11:00am - 11:30pm, Sunday: 11:00am - 10:30pm
> Fine Dining (3rd Fl): Dinner: Monday - Thursday:
> 5:00pm - 10:30pm, Friday & Saturday: 4:00pm -
> 11:30pm, Sunday: 4:00pm - 10:00pm
> Payment Options:
> AMEX, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
> Dress Code: Business Casual
> Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
> Offers: Banquet/Private Rooms, Bar/Lounge, Cigar
> Room, Fireplace, Full Bar, Patio/Outdoor Dining,
> Smoking Area (bar only), View, Wheelchair Access
> Parking: Valet
> Banquet Contact: Dustin Halcombe (703) 266-8811
> Private Party Facilities: We accommodate up to 70
> guests for a private party.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Anne ()
Date: February 17, 2009 06:22PM

I went to Alto Plaza for valentine's..Terrible experience. While I ruined my night they were making money. I have to say that the manager on the third floor was working like crazy......the waiter was very nice.....the food was bad....paid 55 dollars and I still think, I should have paid 1 penny. My steak was overcooked and salty...the dessert was not good it was undercooked and the ratatouille was horrible. I felt sorry for the waiter...he was very helpful..it was not his fault. They should get a real cheff!!!!!!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Liz ()
Date: February 17, 2009 06:25PM

I was on the second floor...it was crazy...my food took one hour to be served.....very bad I couldn't eat!!!! I waited for a manager...and when I talked to him I fel sorry for him....He was very nice..I think the problem is the kitchen. I will never go again!!!! it is not good at all

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Unlucky visitor ()
Date: February 17, 2009 06:29PM

I dropped by Alto for a glass of wine last night to see how things where going there. On previous visits, I have found the third floor bar to be an elegant setting--no more. Before it was quiet and relaxed, now it could best be described in a single word: harsh.

There were about a dozen people there and the room was filled with smoke. Tryed some appetizers...it was cold!!!!and salty..... I had to run out of there it was horrible.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: TheMeeper ()
Date: February 17, 2009 07:42PM

It's amazing how a thread lies dormant for over a month, and then out of nowhere, 3 unregistered people suddenly appear to tell consecutive horror stories, all within 7 minutes of each other. A total coincidence!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: February 17, 2009 07:51PM

It was strange to me that somebody copied verbatim a post I made back in November and then just tacked a new sentence on the end. WTF?

TheMeeper Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's amazing how a thread lies dormant for over a
> month, and then out of nowhere, 3 unregistered
> people suddenly appear to tell consecutive horror
> stories, all within 7 minutes of each other. A
> total coincidence!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: TheMeeper ()
Date: February 17, 2009 07:58PM

Hahaha. Didn't notice that. Definitely a troll.


Diner Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It was strange to me that somebody copied verbatim
> a post I made back in November and then just
> tacked a new sentence on the end. WTF?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: February 17, 2009 08:10PM

That being said, I do think Alto Plaza is a popular Valentine's Day restaurant--for whatever reason. I have friends that went there last year and it was apparently a disaster. The kitchen was completely overwhelmed. So, it does makes some sense that people would post here after that.

TheMeeper Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hahaha. Didn't notice that. Definitely a troll.
>
>
> Diner Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > It was strange to me that somebody copied
> verbatim
> > a post I made back in November and then just
> > tacked a new sentence on the end. WTF?

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: jimW ()
Date: February 18, 2009 04:20PM

and two of the posters mentioned the food was salty, and offset the food's quality with the staff's politeness.

also, the first two are girls. Anne & Liz. Maybe they are two seperate people, and they went together...on a date...for valentines day.

welcome to FFXU Anne & "LEZ"!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: February 18, 2009 04:30PM

I just don't get how somebody invests $8 million to build a restaurant...of all things....in Centreville....of all places.... and then has a floorplan like this...

http://media3.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/cityguide/images/alto200.jpg


That huge atrium through the restaurant is impressive, but it looks like it has taken up dozens of tables that could be generating much-needed revenue for something that costs that much.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Know something about the design ()
Date: February 18, 2009 08:55PM

The original design had a large staircase in a foyer area by the front doors and in that design you could not see directly into the atrium area as you do today. It was designed a true foyer like in a Italian Villa. And the atrium with the stairs you see today well that was originally to be tables and a grand piano on a platform. The original design was a far better layout with a show kitchen and many other design elements they were taken out. The original exterior was also far nicer then what was built. It was as we say dumb downed and some nice detailing was eliminated including some excellent landscaping especially around the lower terrace porch to hide the parked cars. And the lower terrace porch was actually enclosed with walls of glass looking at that missing landscaping that was never done now you sit among the parked cars. There was many other things that got screwed up in the finished building compared to the original design. And you are all wrong about the cost of the building more in the 5 million to six million dollar range. It is a shame that the food has become so bad for the money. I have to agree with many posters on that. The critic from the WP last year was right on about the food and apparently nothing has not changed. I too wonder how much longer they can stay in business.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: February 18, 2009 09:04PM

Know something about the design Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
And you
> are all wrong about the cost of the building more
> in the 5 million to six million dollar range.

It is more than 23,000 finished square feet!

That works out to $217 a finished square foot. That's not right. Space in this market, finished like that, goes for $330 to $450 a square foot, which puts it in the $8 million range at the least!

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Know something about the design ()
Date: February 19, 2009 12:46AM

Under normal circumstances you would be correct maybe even more.

In this case the primary owner is in the building business and contracted it out himself and called in many favors owed him over the years so to speak.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: February 19, 2009 06:23AM

Know something about the design Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Under normal circumstances you would be correct
> maybe even more.
>
> In this case the primary owner is in the building
> business and contracted it out himself and called
> in many favors owed him over the years so to
> speak.


From what I have read on this forum, maybe he should stick with making buildings instead of making steaks.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: February 19, 2009 07:52AM

'Know something', are you the guy that used to post about Alto on another forum as 'ilovetheuniverse'?


Know something about the design Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Under normal circumstances you would be correct
> maybe even more.
>
> In this case the primary owner is in the building
> business and contracted it out himself and called
> in many favors owed him over the years so to
> speak.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: ilovetheuniverse ()
Date: February 19, 2009 11:26AM

yep diner you are correct I forgot about that name.

that was my first name I used many years ago and use it occasionally when I want to be anonymous but have something to say.

ANd I can speak volumes about the design of this restaurant. Can't say anything about the operation or food because I have only been there once with a friend from California just for drinks and after reading the posts decided not to eat there for overpriced food. Many of my friends have eaten there and they all say it is overpriced, but there opinions vary on the quality but non say it is even close to being gourmet. It goes from awful to acceptable but not for the price.

Yes I know the history of this place of how it came about and the original people that wanted to build the most fabulous restaurant in the area. Only one is still involved and is the majority partner. It was quite a drama of how all this originated and nope I am not friends with any anymore. No hard feelings and I was really hoping this place would of become the standard to achieve to in the culinary experience in that area. Unfortunately it looks like for whatever reasons and I don't know, but they never got off to a good start. It appears in the beginning they had the right chef and ideas just never pulled it off to the customers satisfaction at least the majority of customers anyway.

What a shame this place had so much potential and now it is still trying to find it's self. Oh well still wish them the best of luck. With the building business as bad as it is I don't know how they can keep pouring money into this place until they find their niche. I really hope a miracle happens and it does succeed. THey need to find their market. Personally I believe now it needs to reinvent itself into a hot spot night club and dinner club. BUt we will see.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: February 19, 2009 02:58PM

I thought you sounded like the same guy. Thanks for the info...


ilovetheuniverse Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> yep diner you are correct I forgot about that
> name.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: February 19, 2009 03:03PM

ilovetheuniverse Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
With the
> building business as bad as it is I don't know how
> they can keep pouring money into this place until
> they find their niche.


Once a restaurant has spent a year building a reputation of sucking, it is very hard to find "their niche."

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: tony s ()
Date: February 19, 2009 07:56PM

WashingTone Locian Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Once a restaurant has spent a year building a
> reputation of sucking, it is very hard to find
> "their niche."


For it to have lasted this long, it's probably a front.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: February 19, 2009 08:30PM

I've wondered about that, actually.

tony s Wrote:
> For it to have lasted this long, it's probably a
> front.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Date: February 19, 2009 09:26PM

Diner Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I've wondered about that, actually.
>
> tony s Wrote:
> > For it to have lasted this long, it's probably
> a
> > front.


That's dangerous speculation. If it isn't, you could get sued. If it is, you could get whacked.

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Re: Alto Plaza is open has anyone been there yet????
Posted by: Diner ()
Date: February 19, 2009 09:58PM

I'm not worried.

WashingTone Locian Wrote:
> That's dangerous speculation. If it isn't, you
> could get sued. If it is, you could get whacked.

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