***I thought I posted this a long time ago... ooops!!****
Any opportunity to save money while dining out is ok in my books. I especially love when restaurants offer a reduced priced menu after certain hours or like some restaurant groups here in Montreal, offer a special where their menu prices have been significantly reduced. Le Chop menu is one such example. A few restaurants owned by the Tom Nacos group reduce their menu prices for a period of about a month. This year I visited Decca77.
Yes I know I have been there before, but this time they did not know I was coming and I wanted to re-visit this spot I had been invited to months back. I arrived on time for my reservation and was taken to coat check. When I made my reservation, I had requested to be seated on the brasserie side, but the hostess brought us towards the restaurant side. I quickly explained that I had requested the brasserie and the hostess quickly apologized and went to the computer to find us another table. As she was quickly adjusting her seating chart, another hostess approached and questioned why I was not being seated. I explained the mix up but instead of being friendly, this hostess decided the appropriate reaction was to roll her eyes, snort at me and verbally exclaim her annoyance. Right away I was annoyed but decided to ignore this outburst as she was not the hostess seating us.
We were finally approaching our table when two men rudely walked in front of us. The hostess asked them to wait to be seated but the men quickly explained that they were friends of the bartender and were just going to grab an empty table. They grabbed one alright, our table! We were given no choice but to sit at a table literally next to the front door – disappointing. The hostess explained that since the men had sat down first, she was not able to ask them to move, are you kidding me? I was the one with a reservation they just walked in without even waiting to be seated. We sat down pissed off and waited for the third person in our party to arrive, he was parking the car.
Glancing annoyingly over the menu, I decided to pair the Chop menu with wine, an option they offer for a fee. Our waitress greeted us and offered us some cocktails, I ordered a ginger and gin flavoured one, while my friend had a lychee martini. The drinks were strong which we did not mind, but the lychee one was bitter and really not tasty.
I opted for the calamari; I know I am totally a sucker for these crispy and tender circles of goodness. They were neither chewy nor crispy, they tasted fine; not the best I've had but also far from the worst. I liked that they served it with their own aioli and not just marinara sauce, the aioli was good and even better with more fresh lemon. As I nibbled my calamari, my annoyance grew and grew. Where was my first course of wine? My waitress was not the one who served us our appetizers, but you would think she would have made sure to bring my wine course on time. I sat patiently waiting and waiting until finally I was down to my last few rings of calamari. Keep in mind, I ate one piece at a time and very slowly on purpose to see how long it would take for her to come by and not only check on our apps, but to bring me my wine. Twenty minutes later, she arrived and asked me if it was alright if she brought me my wine – ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I answered quite sternly that I would more than appreciate that considering my dish was finished and she hurried off to bring me my wine. It took another 8 minutes for my wine to arrive.
As our first course was cleared away, our main course quickly arrived. We immediately joked as to how long it would take for my second glass of wine to arrive, but by the time I got it, I wasn't laughing anymore. Having finished all of my baked trout and most of the vegetables on my plate, the waitress arrived once again to ask me if it was alright for her to bring my wine. It wasn't for a lack of trying, I had waived down a waitress in between to ask for my wine, but I was told my waitress would be over shortly. I explained my annoyance to my waitress but she offered no apologies.
We both had the baked trout with a lemon wine sauce and steamed veggies. The dish was simple, nothing outstanding about it. The vegetables were steamed well and not overcooked. Overall an average dish with nicely flavoured sauce and properly cooked fish.
Our mains were cleared and I was left with a full glass of wine. I sat sipping my wine when our waitress arrived offering us desserts. I ordered the chocolate dessert and my friend decided on the squash cake based on our waitresses recommendation. The chocolate dessert was very decorative but bitter and not very appealing to my palate; my friend kind of enjoyed it. The squash cake was just not good at all. Flavourless, tough and stale are the only words that come to mind to describe this dessert – really disappointing.
As we were sitting in the restaurant, I tweeted at Decca77 how horrible the service was and how completely disappointed we had been with our evening. The restaurant invited me back for another dinner and I accepted. A few weeks later I was back and of course I received the best service, but the tables around me were blatantly ignored. Two gentlemen sitting next to us sat for over twenty minutes with empty drink glasses before anyone offered them another drink or something to eat. I overheard their annoyance and so did my dining partner. It was a nice gesture to make up our disaster of a dinner, but at least treat all your patrons with the same quality of service, did they think I wouldn't notice? Another table sitting across from us was also ignored and had the worst service ever. They ordered drinks, sat for twenty minutes waiting for them, then gulped them down and left. I heard them say they would have ordered food but the waitress was rude and never returned to check on them. I have tried to like this place but really there isn't much to like.