By David Jones
Last Sunday we decided to try a place that has changed names, but was reliable in the past. Pronto’s used to be Ruffini’s and it sits in a little strip of shops behind Kmart, just off of Route 30 in Thorndale.
We had previously celebrated several birthdays and anniversaries in Ruffini’s, but we hadn’t been back since the name changed. As we walked in around 6:15 p.m., the dining room looked just as it had several years ago.
There are a mix of tables and booths. The area is nicely laid out and spacious. The staff are very nice and inviting. On this Sunday night there were only a few tables occupied, but there was more activity watching the football games in the bar area.
Pronto’s offers a nice selection of specials throughout the week, but we all decided to go off of the regular menu. Mom went with the fish and chips. This was a pretty standard dish using white fish, but there were five generous pieces all together. Mom liked it a lot and commented that everything was nice and hot.
This can be annoying at times, even in “nice” restaurants. There are many times when the food doesn’t come out at the right temperature, but I’m happy to say Pronto got it right for us. Mom likes fish and chips and this was quite of bit of fish for just $9.
Lin got parmigiana eggplant hand breaded and topped with provolone cheese, Pronto’s tomato sauce, Pecorino Romano cheese, served with Cavatelli and garlic bread. This was a very large portion and the eggplant was very good. Lin was a little disappointed in the pasta, she thought it was a little “gummy.”
The dish came with a very nice house salad and dressing. You can add chicken or veal to the dish for an extra cost, but there was plenty of food without the meat and at $15, this was a nice plate.
I got the chicken and spinach ravioli served in Pronto’s house Alfredo sauce. The chicken came out sliced in nice slivers and laid on top of very nice size raviolis that were quite tasty.
I liked this dish a lot and wouldn’t hesitate to order it again. At $15 it was well worth the price. It also came with a house salad and I added creamy mustard dressing to mine.
When it came to draft beers, the menu was totally inadequate and the waitress wasn’t well informed either. I realize that Pronto does a rotation of craft beers on draft, many places do the same thing these days, but they have to have some way of effectively communicating the choices to their dining customers.
It only came in a 22 ounce size, so I needed some help. It was also quite expensive at $16. Since our favorite wine is just $9 per bottle this beer is way over priced.
As you will notice this one bottle of beer cost more than any of our dinners. That can often happen with craft beers, particularly, the larger format bottles, but here’s another rub for me about Pronto, they should have the cost of the beers prominently posted so you can make an informed decision.
Our total tab for dinner and drinks for three was $69 including tax and a 20% tip.
So, the food is good here. There’s nothing spectacular and the presentations are very ordinary. It’s a good place to eat at a reasonable cost level if you’re careful about your bar choices. The staff are very nice, if not always well informed. Mom, Lin and I collaborated on a 2 ½ star rating.
A native of Chester County and a 1968 graduate of Octorara Area High School, David Jones earned a Masters Degree in Medical Ethics from from Villanova University. Mr. Jones served as CEO of both Mayview and Wernersville State Hospitals and later worked directly with then Governor Rendell to modernize and right-size Pennsylvania’s entire state hospital system. Jones and his wife Lynn make their home in Parkesburg and dine out frequently across Chester County and the Delaware Valley.