26 February 2007

bintliff's american cafe

dining date: 02.26.07
eatery: bintliff's american cafe on park ave
web: bintliff's american cafe
pricing category: pricey.
guest critic: sporty spice
overall grade: C

the lowdown:
-nice 'ship-like' atmosphere.
-cozy, borderline claustrophobic. plethora of wall-hangings.
-friendly service, the hostess was prompt and courteous.
-after hand-writing: "i will follow the strict guidelines imposed by the breakfast club and appreciate the honor bestowed upon me by brunching with such lovely people," 1000 times, sporty spice was allowed to guest review again.
-our waitress informed us that they were training a new cook, so it's possible some of our issues stemmed from inexperience.

the food
the benny girl
- omelette with spinach, basil, tomato, chevre and smoked salmon, tea, honeywheat toast and homies
- grade: C-
"i knew it was a bad idea to get an omelette. i never order omelettes. when my plate arrived there was only one piece of toast, a small smattering of homies and an omelette. it took one bite to realize that both the chevre and the spinach were missing. i told the server and she apologized and took it away. when it returned shortly thereafter, the two missing ingredients were there. however, a bone was in there too. seeing as i ordered "smoked salmon," i was definitely surprised to find both cooked salmon and a large fishbone in my omelette. needless to say, i stopped eating it after that. the homies were alright- nothing special. my one piece of toast was burned and under-buttered. not cool. the tea was fine, but she brought earl grey when i asked for english breakfast. i let that one slide. so all in all, not a good experience. the only redeeming thing was that the server was really great about all of the mistakes- they weren't her fault- and she took my meal off the bill, very cool of her. i tipped her well in return. all i can say is that luckily this wasn't my first bintliff's experience so i know how much better they can be."

the usual

- 2 eggs, homefries, toast, and coffee- "classic 2-egg breakfast"
- grade: C
"so i went to bintliff's with high expectations. everyone says it's the best brunch in town and their menu looked pretty great- even though- as usual, i would get 'the usual.' the atmosphere was classy, jazzy and old-fashioned. after perusing the menu trying to fool myself about possibly getting something else, i got 'the usual.' the coffee, -coffee by design- (not my fave), tasted a little hazelnutty and was slow on the refills- not a good sign. my food arrived with exactly 11 chunks of homefries, one piece of butter-deprived, 'grilled' toast, and two fried eggs with runny yolks. i had asked for 'over hard' eggs, as i can't stand yolk. after much stressing, i asked for new eggs- a first for me- i felt terrible, but hey, i'm paying and i hate runny yolk. my new eggs came back better, though still not cooked through, though i didn't have the heart to do anything about it. my second plate came with two times the homefries as the first, which was nice. unfortunately- they lacked any seasoning at all and the potatoes tasted like they'd sat outside all winter: bone dry. our waitress was very nice, especially considering all of the problems we had with our meal. too bad she wasn't in charge of the cooking. overall the food was unimpressive considering the price. i would say it's hard to be 'the best brunch in town' when you can't get 'the usual' right. even i can fry eggs."

wild toast
-louisiana bayou benedict and coffee
-grade: B
"to begin, our service was friendly, coffee and waters arrived a little slow but that was ok. the 'design' coffee was a disappointment and once i reached the bottom of my mug we needed to ask for more. no top off... my benny was quite good. the advertised corn cakes that it was served on were a little weak to stand up to the poached eggs, causing a mushy mash all over my plate. the homefries were like a baseline '91 toyota tercel, nothing special."

sporty spice
-omelette with roasted garlic, red pepper, mushroom, ched. cheese, red onion, tuscan white toast, homefries and coffee
-grade: C
"upon our seating, the first thing i notice was that the menus given to us were far too large for the small booth, creating an awkward situation from the start. once we received our coffee, i noticed that they did not use coffeepots, but instead had airpots containing the coffee. this meant that they would have to take our cups to the airpots to give refills, making refills an infrequent occurence, which they were. when my meal arrived i was disappointed by the fact that i only recieved one large slice of 'toast' instead of the standard two and that it was not toasted but grilled. a grilled piece of bread is not toast. also it barely had any butter on it, making it bland and dry. the homefries were unimpressive, bland, a bit soggy and overcooked. my omelette however was very good. the vegetables were delicious and the cheese was plentiful and melted. it was also good sized. overall though, i was very unimpressed by this dining experience: infrequent coffee refills, odd tasting coffee, crap homefries and not-toast all at a rather hefty price."


Cathryn Falwell said...

Wow--I'm so surprised! Bintliff's is one of my all-time favorite places! Their Eggs Florentine are divine, I've had fabulous omelets there, the staff is great, and I adore the cozy atmosphere! I've brought hard-core foodies there, and they've raved about it! So--please give Bintliff's another try.

Anonymous said...

One of my all-time favorite breakfast spots in Portland. Food is fantastic, staff is great, and the atmosphe is stupendous...

Try the meadmosa!!

Anonymous said...

I agree with the C rating, place is way too busy to enjoy yourself, homefries are huge hunks of potato not what I like and yes overpriced...