You know, because of its location in Burnaby I have tried it on a few different occasions even though I have never really been impressed. I'm going to talk about my most recent experience.
I came on a slower night of the week. The bar was about 20% full. Servers definitely had some downtime. I went to sit at the bar, but my seat selection wasn't the usual "good tv spot" but was really based on finding a clean spot at the bar. The bar had 20 seats (counted them). Two were occupied by what I guess was staff coming in for a snack on their day off based on their interactions with the one bartender, and two other gentlemen sitting at the bar. Almost every seat at the bar was dirty with crumbs, left over food, used coasters, etc. The one bartender certainly had time to interact with the two girls at the bar, but didn't seem to find time to clean the bar. Did I mention I arrived during the 2nd period of the canucks game and after the game was finished, the bar was still dirty with the same mess, used coasters, etc from when I got there? Fruit flies were flying all over the bar which I get happens, and I noticed it when I was there a couple of weeks earlier... but a fruit fly here and there can happen. Although if I was trying to get rid of them, I'd start with cleaning the bar instead of swatting them away while pouring the beer. I have pictures on my phone that I was going to post... but not necessary.
I once had a bartender there, tall Asian gentleman who i believe was missing an ear, was incredibly friendly and interactive at the bar with the guests. But I have not seen a single staff member crack even a smile to any other guest or customer in any of my other visits. Not rude, but definitely not friendly either. My meal of a burger and salad took about 25 mins to 30 mins in an empty restaurant with no other food coming out. Not sure if bartender forgot to ring it in or if kitchen really took that long to prepare a burger. Wasn't in a rush at all... but still.
Food: I've had some things here that were quite good, and some that were just not during my visits.
Good: Gyozas are nice. Well flavoured sauce. I had one of the best prepared (although small) steak sandwhiches I've had in a while. Beef Dip is average but worth ordering. The price point in this restaurant is pretty cheap for the food.
Bad: Margarita Pizza. My girlfriend ordered one and they used the shredded nacho cheese for the cheese... on a margarita pizza. OMG!!! The burger. The meat in it when I bit in was sort of... white. Just low quality. Alfredo Pasta. I'm not sure about the freshness of the sauce of the batch I ate. The Wings. Lots of flavours and I think that is cool. Cheap wing nights, that is cool. But if you are going to call yourself wings... they need to be AWESOME. I can't say myself that they are.
This place has so much potential with its location and its competitors in the area also not really stepping up to the plate. Cleanliness, food quality and a few smiles could make this place OUTSTANDING to go with its outstanding location. I would recommend the leadership team of the bar go into Gastown or yaletown, check out a few pubs. Don't copy them, but just watch at the staff and how they handle their pubs and engage their guests. Get some best practices. Eat a margarita pizza without nacho cheese on it... anyways I have been to this pub about 5 times trying to give it another chance. I will not be returning.
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