Thursday, May 17, 2012

LePeep lays an egg

Mothers Day brunch can be one of the busiest days of the year.  If you are good, you can look really good.  If you are bad, you can look OH SO BAD.

LePeep is in the back of the Arboretum Shopping Center, yet pulls a HUGE crowd.  They certainly have a following.  The corporate website says they are franchises and allows local operators to make some market adjustments to the menu to fit their area.  Does that include using imitation crab in their crabcakes?  4 days since I emailed that question to corporate and no response tells me they don't know what to say. 

Adding insult to the crab injury, they burned the crab cakes.  I think someone forgot to flip them.  One side went untouched, the other side was black as pavement.  Hey, at least someone tried to cover it with sauce.  That's the answer for all that ails you - SAUCE IT! 
The dark blue arrows to the left indicate the easily spotted char from the ill-fated cooking of the crab cakes.

The light blue arrows show that delightful red coloring that is a dead giveaway to the fake stringy crab-ish stuff they used in the cakes.  I wish I took more photos as I cut into them so you could see all of the red coloring.  It was awful.  Not the light redish that real shellfish will get on the edges.  This was like chunks of vinyl (and tasted like it too).

Want to know the rest of the story?  Here you go...

The poached eggs were overcooked and the yolks were solid.  The english muffins were never toasted.  There were two of us with the crab cake benedict and both were cooked with the same lack of care.

The Tex Mex benedict showed up 8 minutes later.  The 18 Wheeler was a hit with two ladies that love French Toast.  Want to know why we didn't send them back?  See the time on the Tex Mex.  We would have been there forever - killing a day full of Mothers Day fun.

Now I will say the owner/manager was trying to facilitate a good service all around.  She was really keeping the servers on their toes to manage the crowd.  I wish she slowed them a little so the cooks would not let something like this go.  There is no doubt they just wanted to shovel it all out as fast as they could.  Again, the sauce covers their mistakes, right?

By the way - call ahead seating is overrated.  I called at 8, had a nice conversation with a young lady that was sure to tell me if I was not there at 11am (as I asked for) that I would go to the bottom of the list.  When we got there, right on time, she still passed us over for everyone that just walked up.  WHAT'S THE POINT THEN PEOPLE?

When and if I ever hear back, I will update the review.  For the time being - it seems like they are satisfied with unsatisfied.
Update:  I emailed corporate on the Monday after Mother's Day and it went a week unanswered.  I then called, got a general voice mail box.  My message was not delightful.  How dare they leave an unhappy customer without a reply after all this time.  They called me another day later, stated that they DO ALLOW IMITATION CRAB in their menus, more specifically, the crab cakes.  They also said they sent my concerns to the local owner.  They should have contacted me already.  Ya think?

So the local owner calls me, remembers our table (large group and late tex mex was a giveaway).  Promised to make it right next time and send a certificate for us to return.  The reason she did not reply sooner was her email was not working on her computer.  While we were talking, I heard her iPhone ring and get silenced.  I am glad that the iPhone doesn't do email or I might have not believed her email excuse.  BTW, no certificate to return yet.  Been a week.  Here we go....

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