I had breakfast here with my husband on a Friday morning. Parking is not plentiful and the spaces are small. This is a petite restaurant located in short strip of stores. It is clean and comfortable and the one waitress was friendly and did a good job servicing the whole restaurant. I don’t particularly care for the décor. There are many artificial greens and after watching episodes of Restaurant Impossible, I know they are nothing but grease and dirt traps. The currently look ok, but this is another reason I will not come back. Prices were fair, $16.85 for our meals, one coffee, and one apple juice.
My husband ordered pancakes (stack of 3) and sausage; I had the short stack (2) with bacon. Our food arrived quickly as expected. I was disappointed to see only 2 small packages of syrup arrive with my pancakes and no butter. I was about to ask for butter until my husband saw evidence of melted butter on top of the pancakes. Not the way I would have done it, but I figured ok, no big deal.
First bite-- the pancakes have a crunchy/grainy element to them. After my second bite, I identified it as cornmeal. Not my favorite, but not bad. The bacon was 10 out of 10 for my husband. It is very smoky and salty and limp. I like my bacon crispy, but it did have a good flavor. We found out later, they use Hatfield brand bacon. The sausage was ok; strong sage and pepper flavor, but they were just some sort of frozen patties --No need to ask about those.
I ate about three quarters of my pancakes as I had run out of syrup, but I had also had enough. What is that grainy stuff? When the waitress brought our check, I just had to know what was in the pancakes. She did not know, but was happy to find out for us. I was very surprised at what she reported back. The cook uses Gold Medal Complete Pancake mix. I looked up this product online. It does not contain cornmeal. It did get many positive reviews from people who had found out about it from their local restaurant and purchased it for use at home with great results.
Gold Medal has a great reputation for quality so I am left to assume that Marie and/or her staff does not know how to mix in water and cook a proper pancake. Pancakes from a mix should not be grainy. Why are they using a mix? I small restaurant like Marie’s could easily create a super-awesome scratch recipe and greatly up their “Wow” factor. Prepackaged syrup cups? How lazy and cheap it looks when presented at the table. And let the customers butter their own pancakes, please! Spreading butter over hot pancakes and watching it melt is like a little appetizer before you get to dig in the main dish.
Breakfast is a quick, easy moneymaker, but Marie has really, REALLY cheaped out. You’re better off staying at home and mixing up your own pancakes with Bisquick.
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