The Shack Eatery is a casual, friendly place offering a menu of classic pub fare and imported and domestic beer, wine and cocktails.
I tagged along with my gf and her friend for a nightcap recently.
The place looks deceiving. On the outside, you'd expect something nice once you get in. Instead, it's your typical bar with a nice layer of filth on top. We sat near the back by the counter station, with a tray of Tostitos in plain view while the prepped onions, tomatoes and such sitting about behind it is probably best served as decoration pieces over actual food. There's a surplus of post-secondary/twenty-somethings around so it's almost a precursor of what to expect.
There isn't a drink menu as beer tends to be centre stage here, though you can rely on the overhead boards for drink choices. Stepping ahead timidly, we started with rounds of Caesars and a Tom Collins, chased with a yam fries starter to check things out. The drinks were horribly made, notably the Caesars which combined a taste of blandness and hints of bitterness throughout. My Collins didn't fair too much better. The yam fries were plentiful but mediocre at best. Judging from the other tables, beer is probably the safest choice here by far.
Our server was friendly enough but rather slow on return visits to take our order, drink checkups and even settling up the bill. I'm willing to let this slide given the kind of business this is a slide from a lot of other similiar "watering holes" around.
The drink (beer) specials look good, and probably the only reason to come.
Went on a Tuesday and they have a pulled pork taco for 2 each. It's more like pull pork in a flour tortilla (small burritto) versus corn tortillas. Good flavours in the pork with some shredded carrots and other veggies. Nice big portions. Tried the pizza and it came with thick slices of ham (I thought the menu said back bacon) which seemed like the ham you buy whole (boneless) at safeway in the deli dept. Overall, pretty good with ample sauce. Good service but place is a bit small.
Having recently returned to the city, I wanted to make a return visit to one of my favourite university haunts. The shack had always been one of my favourite beer and nacho kinda places. I was more than pleasantly surprised to find that the shack has grown up a little bit, although is still an informal and casual atmosphere.
A group of friends and I decided to meet for brunch (another sweet surprise, as they didn't have brunch at the shack prior to me leaving), and we came in on Sunday (I think the same Sunday giz buck came in, but more on that later).
When we walked in, we were the second of two large (more than 8 in each group) parties to walk in at relatively the same time. For a smaller place, that can really slow down bill times on food, but our waitress made sure to let us know, and kept our glasses full! She was really nice, made sure to keep us informed of bill times, and came to our table really regularly. For being the only server in, I give her huge recommendations!
As for the food, yes, it took a long time, but there were only 2 cooks on (and the kitchen is small), and we were the second big group to order. That being said, once the food arrived I was blown away by how much I loved my brunch! I had the shack shucka, which was recommended to me by our waitress, and is the shacks new chefs creation. IT WAS AWESOME!! Sort of an egg hash, with an amazing garlic tomato, roast vegetable sauce base, served in a small griddle that they poach the eggs in. It comes with toast, tahini, and a cucumber, tomato, feta chop salad that was the perfect cool accompaniment to the spicy/sweet egg portion. Despite loving it, I couldn't finish it as it was a huge portion. I highly recommend this dish.
Everyone at our table was more than happy with their food, which has changed considerably since my university days. Major credit to the new chef, who has done some really nice new things with the menu. Some of the things that shined on our table were: the shack shuka, the pulled pork tacos, the pulled pork huervous rancheros, and the crispy chicken sandwich. Everyone else was happy, but those items really shone. I'm definitely going to come back to try more!
I have always been really happy with my experience at the shack, but this was really top notch. The server was awesome and friendly, the food was excellent and inexpensive, and i generally liked the back home feeling I got while I was here.
(A note: our table also noticed the puppy, who wouldn't notice an adorable puppy, and being from a food-service industry back ground I thought I had to say something in return to gizbuck. The girl who came in was obviously on her own time, saw the bar was busy and could use hand. I watched her go to the back, wash and sanitize her hands at the sink, and then commence cutting limes and lemons at her own table. Yes maybe that wasn't the best call, but she was cutting fruit on a clean cutting board, and honestly, you'd have to lack complete common sense to not wash your hands before doing any sort of work in the food service industry. So, unlike gizbuck, I want to thank the girl for helping her out, and ensuring I got my extra dark, extra spicy, extra limes Caesar that much faster!).
Being a university hangout is no excuse for this SHACK. Service was very poor with NO personality whatsoever, waiting time for brunch was over 40 minutes and still had not been served. While we were waiting, what we thought was a patron arrived with her puppy and tied him outside on the patio. Cute well behaved pup. Problem was that apparently the owner of the puppy was more than a patron as she proceeded to cut limes and lemons for the bar. This was unacceptable as she did not leave the floor of the restaurant prior to cutting the fruit, meaning that she had obviously not paid attention to cleanliness by washing her hands. She then proceeded to take her jacket off, sit at a booth (without washing the table) and begin cutting the fruit on a cutting board. As she was representing the establishment by performing a task for the bar, I do feel that she should have paid more attention to food safety. Upon seeing this, my boyfriend and I asked for our tab... without waiting any longer for the brunch we had already waited over 45 minutes for, and left.
My boyfriend and I were searching for a place to go on a Friday night near our house. Seeing as the weather was nice and a cold beer sounded inviting, we thought we'd try the seemingly cool Shack.
We were sat on the patio and waited way too long for someone dressed in sweatpants to ask us if we wanted a drink. Our drinks were brought to us, and even though we had told the server we would want to order food, it wasn't until my boyfriend tracked her down that she came to take our orders.
I ordered my steak sandwich medium. It came to me - no exaggeration - raw. It looked as though they dropped it on the grill, flipped it and threw it on the bread. I was disgusted. I would have told our server, but she didn't come to check on us once. After my boyfriend got up and tracked her down, I was told a new sandwich would be brought to me. At least 15 minutes later, a way overcooked sandwich was brought over on a cold, untoasted bun with soggy mushrooms making the bread entirely inedible.
The service was horrible, the food was a total joke, and our overall experience was garbage. The worst part? They charged us full price for everything.
This place sucks. There are enough places around West Broadway; don't waste your time here.