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“Great drink selection, food is just okay...”
Review of Cities Gastro Pub - CLOSED

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Cities Gastro Pub
Price range: US$20 - US$28
Cuisines: Pub
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, After-hours, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, After-hours, Reservations
Reviewed 20 February 2012

Cities is a good place for drinks (HUGE selection!). However, I have not had a meal there yet that I really enjoyed and I have tried about 6 different dishes... I guess the food is a bit disappointing also because this used to be Restaurant 27 (same owners) and the food there was fantastic. Do not expect the same quality of food as this is a 'gastro pub'. Atmosphere is good though!

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Thank AmyMarie7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviews (79)
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50 - 54 of 79 reviews

Reviewed 8 February 2012

We decided to meet some friends for supper at Cities Gastro Pub on Friday, February 3/2012.

We had been to this location previously when it was under the same management but called Restaurant 27. It was one of our favorite spots in Red Deer and was one of the few restaurants that offered a true gastronomic experience. But that was when this was Restaurant 27 and now it has been re-branded Cities Gastro Pub. While ‘Cities’ is at the same location and has the same management from what we are told, it has very different atmosphere and a new menu.

When we arrived we were immediately met but a group of rowdy guests lined up at the row style seating at near the bar. We made our way to the back of the restaurant to where the rest of our party was already seated at a booth. The drink menu was impressive, especially the beers from various locations around the world. The food menu had some promising items and interesting twists on some old favorites (Ex: A bacon stuffed doughnut anyone?). After having a look at the menu we were a bit saddened that the exquisite menu that Restaurant 27 was known for had been modified into one that offers items like ‘a bucket of bacon’ and a wide variety of Poutine. Now we have nothing against buckets of meat and cheesy French fries, but this was a far cry from the remarkable menu that once graced this location.

(Ordering) - Our drink order was taken by a friendly staff member and then our meal order was taken (by memory) by the same staff. We were a bit skeptical that our order could be remembered accurately and our suspicion was later confirmed when there were some errors in the meal order and a drink order was forgotten three times in a row.

(The food) – The food was acceptable but some items were overly buttered and other items seemed to be similar to what you would expect to come pre-made from a bag.

(The Atmosphere) – At almost 8:15pm exactly the noise level in the restaurant seemed to increase substantially and the music was competing with the guests who had to literally yell at each other in order to maintain a conversation. One of the members of our party had a decibel meter (also known as an acoustic pressure / sound pressure meter). They took two readings from our booth location. The results of the sound tests showed it had registered an average peak decibel level of 96 db during the measurements (I’ll save you an internet search and tell you this is quite loud). I would like to note that no one in our group was over the age of 31, so it was very obvious to us that this restaurant had turned into a type of ‘waiting room’ for the two bars located across the street that were about to open. Needless to say the environment had become a bit rowdy and extremely loud. I guess we should have seen the warnings earlier when we had originally arrived and saw a sign that states no minors after a specific time.

So our evening ended when we could no longer hold a conversation through lip reading. After making our way through a crowd smoking directly in front of the main doors (isn’t there a by-law against this?), we decided this would be our last visit to Cities Gastro Pub.

I understand that there is probably more profit in selling alcohol than high-end / gourmet meals so I really can’t blame the owners for moving towards this format. But from a patron’s stance, we really miss the quality dining experience that Restaurant 27 use to provide.

(Summary)
THE GOOD: Good selection of beer from around the world.

THE BAD: Atmosphere, excessive noise, waiting staff were forgetful (forgot a drink three times), got order wrong (probably because they neglected to write it down), booths are uncomfortable for those who have to use the chairs on the end because of the table legs, and food was nowhere near the quality it was when this location was Restaurant 27.

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3  Thank TripstersCA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 February 2012

Huge Beer selection and tasty appetizers make this a treat for clients. Poutine is a must...with beer!

Thank Devo S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2012

I used to dine quite often when Cities was Restaurant 27. The menu was unique, inventive, and everything was always perfectly cooked/seasoned. I have dined there half a dozen times since the change, and haven't been overly impressed.

I have had the Flatbread Pizza, Bruschetta, and Crab Cakes to start, each being ok but nothing special. For entrees I have tried the Fish and Chips, Steak Sandwich, Striploin, Lamb Shanks, as well as the Fish Tacos. The only that stood out for me and that I would order again would be the tacos. Everything was decent, just overly seasoned.

The Bacon Doughnut is very good, unique and I would order again for sure. The last time I was there, I had the Junkyard Pie and it was freezer burned. I told the waitress and wasn't given an apology and it wasn't removed from my bill. She just said she would "check it out".

This place is great for drinks, poutines, and has a warm lively atmosphere, which is why I keep returning!!

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2  Thank abnewf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 January 2012

Everything here is good. Pub fare & more. The Fish taco's are spicy and I love having choices for my sides. Often have live music on the weekends.

Thank In_the_Know017
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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