Written by on April 13, 2010 in I Eat Seattle, I Eat...Out with 0 Comments

( – Downtown
How I heard of this place: Through the Entertainment Book.
Type of cuisine: American, typical hotel fare with options for the entire family or business meeting.
Ambiance: 1990s corporate setting. Windows facing the I-5 freeway over 6th Avenue and going around the corner to the south and west side of the block. Booth and table with chairs seating available for pairs, small groups or even lunch-/dinner-meetings.
What I ordered: While waiting to be seated, I noticed a lunch menu on the counter and began to peruse it for some ideas of what I might enjoy in this lunch with a good friend (who chose the restaurant out of six options with coupons). I was seated by the waitress just before my friend arrived and was warm from a ten-minute power walk to the restaurant so I began to fan myself with the one-paged menu. When my dining companion arrived, she cheerily beamed, “Breakfast!” I looked down at the menu and noticed, sure enough, we were being offered brunch! We made our decisions quickly as our waiter (who was wearing more make-up than either of us) sauntered over to our table to take our drink orders. My friend said she was ready to order and he took out his pen and pad of paper. “I’ll take the eggs Benny,” she exclaimed! He made a hesitant face and then said, “We are not doing breakfast any more.” We noted that we were, in fact given only breakfast menus and were prepared based on what we were offered. He frantically ran to the back of the restaurant, then reconsidered and ran into the kitchen. Returning moments later, he said he could take our breakfast orders but only if they didn’t include anything from the top half of the menu – no waffles, no pancakes, nothing from the griddle. That was fine by us. “Eggs Benny” and “Huevos Rancheros” – which was supposed to come with corn tortillas, eggs, black beans, cheddar cheese, sour cream and guacamole.
Our waiter returned after about three or four minutes and said that he wasn’t able to catch the kitchen staff before they tossed the sauce for the Benedict. So we needed to place another order. My friend opted for an omelette. “What can I get on that omelette?” The waiters response, “um…Bell peppers? mmm….mushrooms?” “Sure. Anything else?” Blank stare. Pen at mouth in contemplation. My dining companion offered, “Onions? Cheese? Spinach? Anything else?” He replied, “No. That’s it.” And she emphatically said she did not want meat. “No bacon or sausage. No meat!” Okay.

Thirty minutes later, after great conversation, but knowing that my friend had to be back at work, she noted the length of time it took for the orders to come out. When they finally did, our plates were hot but the food just warm. My huevos rancheros came with two eggs sunny side up (good thing I don’t mind the eggs runny, but wasn’t offered any alternatives), and no cheddar, but a ramekin dish about a third of the way full with feta cheese and sides of black beans, sour cream and guacamole. It didn’t look appetizing, but I was willing to give it a try. I nearly laughed out loud when I saw the look of surprise and disgust on my dining companion’s face when the waiter placed her plate down in front of her; “And we didn’t have any more breakfast potatoes so we gave you fries. Here’s the ketchup.”

After a few bites, she picked up small, red bits onto her fork and asked me, “Does this look like meat?” She tried to eat it, but being averse to bacon had to say something to the waiter. He came over and she asked, him the same question. His face dropped, he said, “Oh my gosh. What can I bring you? Do you want to order something else?” She explained that we were on a lunch break and had to leave shortly and he offered clam chowder. It came quickly, with a coffee refill. And he said “Of course, we’ll take care of your meal.”

At the end when he asked if we were ready for the bill, my friend said, “We came with a coupon for buy one get one free so there should be no bill.” He said, “Well, she has to pay for her meal,” gesturing to me. I asked if we could get half off of the one meal since we came specifically to use the coupon and were dissatisfied with the experience. He immediately said that the entire meal would be comped and thanked us for coming in as he quickly cleared the table.
What I loved: Given few things to be appreciative of in this dining experience, and having to find one thing for which to be grateful, the view from the window where we sat overlooking 6th Avenue facing east was the part I loved the most. Next, the free lunch.
Why I loved it: No comment.
Cost: Average ($10-$14 for breakfast eggs)

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