Consentino’s vs. Fernando’s of Martha’s Vineyard-Savannah, GA

I have a little war within myself as to doing a review for Fernando’s of Martha’s Vineyard and Consentino’s – both Italian, both on the same street basically.  

Here are some of my likes and dislikes for both.  Keep in mind that I am not a ‘frequent’ diner at either one, but I have been to both a couple of times.  Fernando’s – The dish that I had while I was there was the Chicken Valdostana – a breast of chicken stuffed with fontina cheese and prosciutto in a sherry wine mushroom sauce – and it was sinfully good.  Seriously, not just good, and much better than great, it was to die for.  I had the tiramisu for dessert and wine as my beverage of choice.  All was wonderful.  The service was nice and friendly.  The atmosphere…well, I would change some things if it were mine, but it is not….ok, ok, if you really want to know what I would change I will tell you.  I would definatly change the table cloths, or at least the ones in the window, I really don’t like the red & white checker look, unless you are at a Pizza Hut or a picnic, this should never be used.  I do not like the fake trees in the dining room that are visible from the external also, not a good look.  They have a wonderful upstairs – they should use it (FYI – it is available for private parties).  Overall, I liked it, I would return in a heartbeat. 

Consentino’s – I have tried to go to dinner at Consentino’s a couple of times but they were so busy I could not get in the door (this should have been a sign, right), so I have only been able to visit for lunch, now that they are open for lunch.  For my lunch I had the Milano – a toasted ciabatta with proscuitto, fresh mozzarella, pesto, tomato & balsamic vinaigrette! Yummy, it was fabulous! Everything about this wonderful ‘jewel’ of a sandwich was spectacular! My dining partner had the Philly Cheese Steak – he did not think it was a winner, but I thought it was pretty tasty.  The atmosphere is wonderful – it reminds me of an Italian restaurant in
New York City, which I heard that is where the owner is from (if I am wrong, I apologize).  But really, the atmosphere is decorated and lit in a way that makes you feel like you have traveled far away – it is always nice when a restaurant can ‘transport’ you like that.  The music was nice, kind of loud for those just wishing to dine and have conversation, ok for those at the bar, this could be adjusted I would think.  The service was fine, I liked the black shirts, even though they were t-shirts, they were ‘classy’ t-shirts and it worked with the restaurant.  Overall – defiantly a winner in my book.
So, to recap my review:  I would say that both are good, in their own ways.  I think Fernando’s is a great restaurant for the older generation to dine, maybe with their families, and Consentino’s is more for the young, hip crowd.  I think that if Fernando’s wants to try to compete with Consentino’s, it needs to ‘vamp’ up their look a bit and try to appeal to the younger diners, not bar crowd – don’t get me wrong – younger diners 

In Savannah, face it, there is a younger generation that is willing to spend their hard earned cash on some really good food, but they crave atmosphere as well.  There must be a balance with the two, and that is one thing that Consentino’s has done very, very well.   

Fernando’s of Martha’s Vineyard-423 West Congress Street-Savannah, GA-912-236-1903 Consentino’s Trattoria-44 Martin Luther King Blvd-Savannah, GA.-912-232-2720


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