Submitted Tuesday, February 19, 2008 - 5:50pm [Dine in]
So where to start?. Charlie Don't Surf is charming and warm; lots of old junk and bold colours, great patio and for the middle of winter it was somewhat busy so we figured it was a good choice.
It wasn't. Just getting a table for 4 took way too long; and the inside of the restaurant was empty. We stood there in the entrance ignored for at least 5 minutes and when they finally sat us down we didn't hear any lunch specials or drink specials. Drinks arrived and then the waiting game continued with closed menus and bored diners. I ordered the quiche made with free-range eggs and spinach salad and the calamari starter; the other people at my table had fish & chips and bruschetta.20 minutes later our calamari arrived without utensils or napkins .As we tried to flag someone down so we could eat our starter, the bruschetta (which was intended as a main and that's how we ordered it) arrived and was disappointingly small. You'd figure charging $9 would mean you give your customer more than two slices of bread with a sprinkling of toppings. Our calamari was unappealing and we were told it took so long due to being ‘made from scratch’.
Once the other mains arrived it was nothing but disappointments. The fish & chips were over-battered, greasy, tasteless and definitely not fresh. The quiche was undercooked with a soggy crust and definitely did not look or taste like it was made with free-range organic eggs (same with the pale boring hard boiled egg that topped my overdressed soggy spinach salad).
The service is definitely the reason not to go to Charlie Don't Surf; the staff look like they checked out months ago. Even the owner John brushed off our complaints by telling us 'not to make a big deal out of it' and telling us that because all his staff are students it wasn't his fault. To his credit, he did come back to talk with us and try to remedy our unhappy experience and offered to take the calamari and quiche off the bill for us which was a decent gesture.
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Submitted Sunday, January 13, 2008 - 8:56am [Dine in]
I went to GM Restaurant recently with my girlfriend who was craving butter chicken; since this place was just up the road from me we decided to give it a try.
We walked in, were greeted and sat down beside the window. First thing I noticed: It was COLD! Cold, dark, dreary and boring! I actually had to put my jacket on.
After waiting 5 minutes or so to be given menus; it was another 5 before we were offered drinks and then another 5 to be given the drinks. It was obvious the waiting staff were all very young and not passionate about what they do nor wanted to be there.
Our server took our orders and scurried off never to be seen again until he brought out our starter; which was tasteless except the overpowering amount of cilantro added.
Once the food came; neither of us were very impressed. It all just tasted like your standard food-court Indian food. Very generic and uninteresting. Nothing really bad, just nothing really outstanding. Judging by the other customers in the restaurant decked out in their
'Sunday best' (Maple Ridge style of course, sweat pants and flannel shirts); this isn't a fine-dining hot-spot in Maple Ridge.
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Submitted Saturday, January 12, 2008 - 6:59pm [Dine in]
Service: Stood around in the foyer waiting for to be seated or at least greeted for a good 10 minutes. No eye contact from waiting staff much less a 'hello'. After we were seated, the server was friendly and personable throughout the evening; definitely the only highlight of my visit.
Food: Ordered the penne carbonara and found it very bland, oily and tasteless overall. Basically just got penne covered in a white sauce, very little vegetable or protein and virtually no garnish so I had to stare at this white pile in a white plate.
Would not visit again.
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