Owned by the same people as Clinton’s Ditch, Firestone 151 is one restaurant that left me with mixed feelings.
After eating at Clinton’s Ditch, I was looking forward to an equally delicious meal at Firestone 151, but my expectations were not met as the several dishes I tried was par/sub-par.
Repurposed from a Tire Shop, Firestone 151 stands tall on Lafayette Street.
As one approaches the restaurant, one can hear euphonious laughter and loud music. This inviting gesture is very exciting and helps further ignite one’s appetite. After one enters the restaurant, the dream begins to slowly disintegrate.
Although there was a large crowd and they were packed, I was seated immediately. Once we were seated we were quickly forgotten about for 10 whole minutes, as we were not given silverware or menus. Finally, once we got our menus I was disappointed to see a very limited amount of options. The only options were hamburgers, salads, chicken or sandwich, and pizza. Despite its limited nature, the long and thin menu was playful and inviting, which this did enhance the experience.
To start off, my party and I ordered the boneless wings after hearing positive rumors about them. Ultimately, the bar and grill offers a decent wing, but by no means a great wing. A lackluster pale-orange, the presentation of the wings was more like a funeral than an appetizer. The “hot” boneless wings that we deliberately ordered were mild at best. Also, the texture was all wrong, as the wings were soft like a baby, lacking a bite to them that good wings have. The wings came with thick-cut carrots and celery that were a very pleasing surprise. The extra sturdy carrots and celery almost helped balance the extra-soft wings.
The second we begrudgingly finished the wings, our entrées materialized before us. Impressive in appearance, my burger and fries had my taste buds flaring. However, once I assembled my burger and took my first bite I was disillusioned. Falling apart constantly, the burger was messy and hard to hold. The meat was cooked to my favorite medium temperature, but it was over seasoned and salty. With ketchup and cheese already on my burger, the burger might as well have been marinated in the Dead Sea. As much as I wanted to like the burger, the disharmony of its components and the overbearing salt made it difficult to swallow.
The fries on the hand were quite good. They were tall and skinny very similar to McDonald’s fries. Unlike the burger, the fries were well seasoned. The piping hot shoestring fries had that characteristic crunch that you get when you bite into a great fry.
I also had sampled the fried chicken sandwich. A thick cut-piece of fried chicken, the meat of the sandwich was very tender and delicious.
Going well with the soft bun, the sandwich had a great dynamic blend of flavors with honey mustard contrasting the crunchy, seasoned chicken.
Taking a step back from the food, I really enjoyed the ambience that Firestone 151 had to offer. It’s loud inside but still very possible to have a conversation with someone across the table from you. There were TV’s plastered all over the place with basketball and hockey games roaring. Occasionally you hear the hollering or booing of a sports fan after some vital play. Ultimately, I have grown to appreciate Firestone 151’s trendy and sports-bar-like ambience.
Ultimately, as much as I wanted to like Firestone 151, the several flaws in both my appetizer and my main course are inexcusable. The service is very unsteady, very responsive at times and completely absent at other times. Based on my experience alone, I would not recommend going to Firestone 151 unless you want irregular service and decent (at best) food.