Terrible food, mediocre service, would avoid – review of epicure cafe, pokolbin, australia – tripadvisor gas 93 octane

I visited Epicure Cafe on Sunday 20th May after getting turned down by Nanna Kerr’s as there was a minimum 1 hour wait to get a table. We were a party of 4 + a baby and arrived at the cafe at 10.55am. We were seated fairly promptly upon arrival and presented menus. Tap water was also served quite quickly. We placed our orders and it all went downhill from there. After an hour, food still hadn’t arrived. The cafe was not particularly busy. I asked how long more it would be and was told there were 2 more tables before us. One was a table of 6 people. I asked if this was correct as we had already been waiting for an hour and the waitress apologised saying they were short staffed in the kitchen and they ran out of eggs at one point, hence the delay. The waitress offered to deduct our coffees from the bill – we ordered 3 coffees. Food finally arrived after 1.5 hours. Our visit for brunch became lunch. I did not think I could be anymore disappointed by this point but I was wrong. My eggs benedict was not bad but it wasn’t served hot. 2 english muffin halves, boiled spinach, smoked salmon out of a packet, 2 poached eggs and hollandaise sauce. No pepper or salt was offered. The big breakfast was basically 2 x no frills sausages, some bacon, some chorizo, 2 halves of a slice of toast, a small bowl of baked beans (looks cooked not from a tin) and eggs. Worst dish was the waffles which were not freshly made but out of a packet with some cut strawberries, bananas and maple syrup on the side. I don’t even think the waffles were toasted or could have been toasted but wasn’t served hot. I had let the waitresses know about our terrible experience and should note that we had our coffees removed off the bill and 25% off the final bill. The total came up to just under $80. The waitresses were apologetic but for the quality of the food served, I would never never never ever go back. Upon reading more reviews, especially on Google reviews, I have found that slow service is consistent at this place. I have also considered not posting this as I love supporting small local cafes and this may have just been a one off incident. However, I felt that it was a terrible experience that ruined the start of our trip at the Hunter and just want the next person considering a visit to this cafe to reconsider based on our experience.

Hello Cazzie, In response to your review. Firstly we do apologise that you did not enjoy your experience at epicure as we work very hard to ensure customers are well looked after and are served quality food/ coffees and drinks. The Sunday you visited we had a fully booked breakfast service which you came in at the end of with no booking. I have spoken to the staff working on Sunday and they remember your group well and have communicated that they did in fact worn you on arrival that there was a extra long wait time, so you in fact could make the choice whether you were happy to wait or go elsewhere. In hindsight at the time you arrived we should of advised that we werent taking any more breakfast walk ins and only attended to the bookings as we had a back log in the kitchen due to the fact that mid breakfast service we had a unforseen issue with our gas which took time out of service to rectify. This was totally beyond our control and unfortunately one of those rare issues that happen. Our staff did their best – both in the kitchen and on the floor and all customers that were to be effected by wait times were advised of the extra long wait times. Weekends are extremely busy in the Hunter and Sunday breakfast one of our most popular services-I do recommend that you consider this and book ahead wherever you intend dining on your future visits and please be mindful that busy times means that you will be in fact waiting longer than normal-this is why the staff tell customers on their arrival- I understand you had already been turned away from another Cafe due to long wait times and this can be frustrating-but to avoid these issue on your next visit- I strongly recommend you book ahead at all venues. . The food: Our eggs benedict is one of the most popular dishes on our menu.The big breakfast actually has 2 pork sausages/bacon/2 x eggs/roasted tomato/mushrooms/housemade baked beans and sourdough toast x 2 pieces. As for the waffles-no we dont make them here-they are traditional premium quality Belgian waffles-definitely toasted and served with strawberries,bananas and maple syrup. Thankyou for at least acknowledging that you were heavily compensated-25% off your bill plus free coffees- which I believe to be more generous than most.

Dear ZoeRenee, Sorry you werent happy with your breakfast and that we had run out of two items. Unfortunately being a busy Cafe sometimes means we do run out certain items towards the end of a busy service and the day your group dined corn fritters were super popular as were the mushrooms. We try our best to prep and be prepared and one of the ways we estimate numbers is based on bookings as well as allocating for walk ins.The day you dined we had a far higher number than usual customers walk in with no bookings and or a last minute booking such as yours. We also unfortunately had a incident in the kitchen (mid service)which we could not have foreseen and this needed to be dealt with, which also threw our time frames out. All staff are trained to advise customers of expected delays. I have spoken to my staff and they have assured me that any table effected by our kitchen issue were in fact advised as well as being compensated for having to wait. We take all reviews very seriously and always look at such situations and work on improvements.I have looked back on your sales docket and can see that your table of five were in fact not charged for coffees/teas and you were not charged at all for your mushrooms. (22.50 +18.00= $40.50 discount) leaving your tables bill total as $68.00 to pay, which I believe to be a very generous discount which you failed to mention in your review.. Our staff did their very best to look after you and to ensure you were happy. We did have a new staff member on the floor that day (who did attend to your table and being her second shift she is obviously still very much in the learning phase in regards to all our policies and procedures) and I can only hope customers can be kind and understanding… but I can assure you the business is well established and my staff are all experienced with the exception of one new staff member. To finish -unfortunately items do sell out on extremely busy days at times and for this we do again apologise. # This is a second response to your review due to the fact that I see you have sent a Q & A in after I responded initially and it seems you felt unsatisfied with my initial response. I am only too happy to discuss this matter with you by phone/ in person if you still feel your review has not been handled in a efficient manner- Please feel free to call me anytime on 02: 49986665. Regards, Norma