Thursday, December 1, 2011

Brunch: Elephant & Castle

Sometimes you give a brunch spot a go and love it.  Then you go back a second time and then finally see it for what it really is.  Total bummer.  I am sad to report that I recently experienced this beauty vs beast type situation during brunch at Elephant & Castle.

Elephant & Castle (pic from nymag)
Beauty experience: The first time I went to brunch at Elephant & Castle, I rolled in around 11am. Crazy I know, but I've recently gotten into the habit of going to brunch early.  Not sure if I've been waking up earlier just to beat the rush, or if I just happen to beat the rush because I've been getting up earlier "naturally".  Either way, that first time brunching at Elephant & Castle was glorious.  We walked right in and got seated right away at a table of our choice.  Score!

The inside was simple and charming.  Yes the service was a bit spotty but I just wrote that off as a one-off occurrence.  My food still came quickly and I enjoyed my brunch.  I promptly put Elephant & Castle on my "favorites" list.

The charming setting inside (pic from nymag)

Beast experience:  For my second go at Elephant & Castle, I arrived around 1:15pm on a Sunday.  We came with an understanding of a wait and put our name down on the list.  While waiting, we witnessed the extreme rudeness of the lady manning the list.  Her scowls and attitude just didn't wet my appetite.  Especially when she started yelling at a customer who was checking her place on the list ("You don't have to eat here if you don't want to wait!").  
Then we got to experience first-hand her rudeness and mismanagement of the list.  After waiting 15 over the estimated time, we took a chance and decided to (cautiously) approach the lady and ask about our position on the waitlist.  I love how she claimed that she called our name already.  First, our name on the list was not the right name (aka first three letters of a long and second, we never left the stoop (and she knows it cause we always made eye contact when she stepped out!) so ....yea...

Ok, so we're finally seated - lets just try to enjoy the late brunch.  Here comes the next round of rudeness from our waitress - menus dumped as she blew by and our questions answered with a one-word answers and a scowl.

Brunch menu
The one positive thing?  Our food came out fast and hot!

Scrambled Eggs with Guacamole, Salsa, and Warm Tortillas
Pureed Spinach with Poached Eggs and Potato Pancakes
Eggs'n Apples Benedict on French Toast
I enjoyed my simple Scrambled Eggs with Guacamole, Salsa, and Warm Tortillas.  My brunch pals ordered the Eggs'n Apples Benedict on French Toast and the Pureed Spinach with Poached Eggs and Potato Pancakes.  Verdict on the Eggs'n Apples?  Brunch pal said the hollandaise was wayyyy too rich and the only enjoyable part was the apple french toast.  Verdict on the Yukon Brunch?  Spinach puree was yick but the eggs and potato pancakes were good.

While we enjoyed our food (ok, I guess I was really the only one who enjoyed my entire dish), both my dining pals said the unpleasant nature of the staff - which I experienced on both of my brunch trips - completely wiped out any goodwill from the meal.  Accordingly, both declared that they would never return.  Sadly, this whole saga forced me to remove Elephant & Castle from my favorites list and give it a ...

Piggy says No!

Thanks for reading - Piggy KK

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