Not our favorites
We make a point of trying pretty much any restaurant at least one time, hence all of our restaurant blogs. In the last couple of weeks we have had two experiences that would definitely not make our B list, nor do we plan to try them again any time soon. With so many eateries in downtown, never mind the rest of the city, we go on the theory that the first impression is usually correct. (We welcome comments to the contrary about any of our posts).
Since there is a line up every time we walk past the Café Crepe location on Robson Street near Burrard we figured that there must be a reason. The day we went for breakfast was a rainy one (and a weekday) so we only had to wait a few minutes for a table; good start. However, we sat for more than 5 minutes before a server acknowledged us and then again for another 5 minutes to get our drinks (which included a luke warm latte for Tara). Our server was overwhelmed with tables and kept getting distracted by other customers looking for her on the way to take our order. By the time we did place the order we had been in the restaurant 15 minutes. We also had to ask three different staff (our server, a manager and a buss boy) in order to get a glass of water. The food did arrive quite quickly after we ordered. The crepes were good but the eggs were not and the bacon that was requested as crispy was ‘rare’. The cooking staff working at the window were very friendly and on our way out they thanked us for coming. So if you are planning to order from the window and enjoy a crepe it is likely that you will have friendly service and a good crepe, otherwise we are not so sure.
I guess the first sign for us that we might be in the wrong place was the menu containing a mix of North American items for breakfast and Vietnamese items for lunch. We had entered the restaurant based on the breakfast sign outside but after seeing the menu Tara opted for Vietnamese lunch items instead. The table contained both ketchup and Hoisin sauce, the décor was a café-diner-restaurant mix with a take out bar/cash register counter in the back. Jeff ordered the ‘Eggs any Style’ breakfast which was average at best. The scrambled eggs were over cooked and the toast was served dry, and almost cold. Tara tried the vegetarian spring rolls and a mango basil salad roll. The spring rolls were very greasy and the salad roll flavor was overpowered by basil. While the whole experience might be different at lunch or dinner and for a Vietnamese meal, the whole mix of experiences was a bit odd for us.
My experience with Café Crepe is that every experience is a one-off. I’ve had solid service and awful service, but there’s no real consistency. When I visit, because when it’s on it’s quite good, I give it a short leash before moving on. Their cheap pints are a good reason to stop in on a warm afternoon.
Thanks Dave! We have actually had an OK experience at the outdoor window just not that time on the ‘dine in’ visit. Cheap pints may just send us back for another try though. Cheers!