Saturday, July 10, 2010

not available in Savannah...yet

CANDWICH gives new meaning to "pop a top." And, the marketing department should be congratulated on the cheerful candy-colored cans.  This product definitely qualifies as a culinary wonder, but I'd have to rate it way evil even though I have not tried it.

Read about the Candwich and its sketchy origins.

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It's not THAT bad.

At 11 this morning, I decided to take Jen to a rather obscure breakfast spot. Although I've lived in Savannah just over eight years, this is only my second visit to this cafe.

PHOTO: Listening to the waitress at the table behind me describing Belgian waffles with maple syrup and pecan topping : "...that's with pee-kans and pray-leans on top." That's how they say it in Georgia.

Having parked in my favorite spot (it's free and it's a secret), we took the Bohemian Hotel elevator down to River Street and headed west. As we walked into the restaurant, we noticed several empty, yet unbussed tables and were told that the wait would be fifteen minutes. Thus, we waited outside in the alley where we were not allowed to smoke or to loiter.  Entering the restaurant (or waiting to enter) in an alley behind a seafood restaurant is neither appealing nor appetizing. 

We watched  two groups of two, then a group of six exit the cafe. We still waited; but we were ushered in to our booth in about six minutes. The interior is cozy and quaint; but I don't understand the Mediterranean atmosphere and the overabundance of flyers advertising Isaac's on Drayton. When you do slide into the booth, the first thing you notice is that the table is sticky. The book in which you write comments is sticky. All this stickiness is a good sign, though. It's all about syrup here.

The sign outside advertises breakfast all day and that's what is featured on the menu: frittata, omelets, waffles, French toast, The Hungry Man (3 eggs, bacon, sausage, potatoes, grits and toast), and the standard eggs, toast, and sausage or bacon. I didn't even take time to look at the rest of the three-page menu.

Having ordered the Belgian waffle and the steak omelet, we opened the syrupy book of customer comments. The first comment is dated September 8, 2009 and the customers were not satisfied. They deemed their dining experience "overpriced, service slow, dingy, a little weird." They did not realize that this could describe most dining experiences in Savannah. Jen noted that many of the customers used the same descriptions as the first comment in their entries and that many of them were also on their 20th anniversary trips.  We also realized that if a customer read the book of comments before ordering, he/she would probably not order at all.

Our waitress was from Russia and did not understand half and half iced tea, yes refill, or how to process a credit card. However, she was friendly and the order arrived fairly quickly by Savannah standards. Jen deemed the omelet "made like an omelet should be made...proper ratio of egg to filling." My Belgian waffle lived up the waitress's description. It was covered with what appeared to be finely chopped "puh-cahn praw-leans" and generous dollops of real whipped cream--mmmmmm delicious.  I would have added butter, but it didn't arrive at the table until I was almost finished with the waffle.

Most Trip Advisor reviewers rate the whole experience at THE COBBLESTONE CAFE as terrible:

Reviewers on Urban Spoon are not quite as severe in their ratings of the cafe:

I can understand reviews by tourists being overly harsh; but I would rate it average, for Savannah (a balance of good and evil).

Side note:  As we walked out of the alley, I heard a teenage girl in a group wearing family reunion tee shirts point at the sign for Fiddler's (upstairs from the cafe) and exclaim:  "Look!  It's a crab house!!!"  Now what's up with that?

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