Rating: -1 Waitstaff
I was recently invited to brunch with my boyfriend’s family and the location they decided upon was the dead shell of what was once my favorite classy joint in town (Crow Hill) currently known as 9 Bakery and Lounge. I looked up the menu as I always do and as much as I wanted to hate this place on principal, there were quite a few options that piqued my interest. Among them were the Pulled Pork Benedict, Shrimp and Grits with Texas Pete Cream, and Breakfast Time Burger with sriracha mayo. Any one of these would have been enough to get me in the door, but in the end the sriracha offering won me over. Isn’t that always the case? Fact: if you ever want me to review your place, put sriracha on the menu. I will come.
I was surprised after walking in at how recognizable the space still was. There was definitely some painting and redecorating but it still had a similar classy-Southern laid back feel. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t mentally noting some of the color and design choices for personal use. We were seated on the upper level, an honor I never had when the space was Crow Hill. The table was more than large enough for our party of 10+ and could have fit more. There was a mix of chairs and couch seating around a large table that was lounge-like without being difficult to eat at. It reminded me of being at a house, hanging around the living room. It was a great atmosphere for a Sunday brunch.
While ordering I noticed the waiter forgot to ask me which side I wanted with the burger. No biggie, it’s a big table, I’m sure he just forgot. But after we left I found out I don’t think he asked anyone in our group which side they wanted. We received a free plate of what I surmised were Aztec Muffins (chocolate and cayenne pepper) for the table. After a super fucking weird plate dance our waiter did to put our appetizer plates down, we all dug in. The muffins were delicious. They were soft without being completely crumbly, and the cayenne pepper wasn’t super present but added to the other spices to make a great fall flavored muffin. The velvety treat was a great way to keep us happily waiting for our food. I’m not sure if everyone gets them, or if it was just for our large group since our table would take a bit longer to cook for. Our waiter was the silent type, I guess.
After a very reasonable wait, our food finally arrived. My exact words upon seeing the first plate were “Oh shit.” A man who I presumed to be a manager or owner grinned, and said “You mean Oh SHIT!” One of our other party members had ordered the Pulled Pork Benedict. That bitch was a monster. I was scared for how large my burger would be if their brunch portion of benedict was worthy of a buffet plate. My sincerest apologies for not taking a picture, but sometimes you don’t want to be that person at a family gathering. My burger with potato salad on the side, on the other hand was very reasonable.
I’ll start with the potato salad. Now, any potato salad I’ve ever eaten has had some sort of mayo as a binder. I would have accepted this as herbed potatoes, or chilled home fries, or any number of the silly names we give cubed potatoes. I would not call this potato salad. That being said, it was ok. I didn’t finish it. The burger on the other hand, was brought down from the gods. The bun was toasted with out being overly crusty. It was soft while still being substantial. The burger patty itself was cooked to a perfect small pink center and the bacon, goat cheese, sriracha mayo, and fried motherfucking egg were godly inspiration. The only thing I could have (and should have) asked for would have been more sriracha mayo. Or just sriracha. I finished every drop of golden yolk that dripped off that patty of dead cow and was full without being sick or overly stuffed.
I should mention at this point that I also ordered a biscuit on the side that I never received. Two in our party ordered doughnuts instead of full meals and were left sitting for at least 10 extra minutes waiting for them. After they did receive them, they received the wrong amount. Yes, this place serves homemade doughnuts. And I’m not talking about your basic Boston cream. They had available on our visit bacon maple, blueberry cheesecake, and many other out-of-the-norm flavors.
This place was pretty great. The atmosphere was spot on, the burger was great, and there were a number of menu items that I will be going back to try. The downside was our waiter, who seemed aloof, unaware of basic menu options, and did not seem keen on offering any information that might enrich our experience. I have no issue with waiters and waitresses who aren’t extras from a sunday morning kids show or who are no nonsense, but knowing the menu and conveying information as to what things are, and why delays are occurring are a common courtesy. It almost felt like we were bothering him by being there. So I will return to taste again, but hopefully to better service.