UPDATE: THIS PLACE FINALLY CALLED IT QUITS.
It's a Saturday, I'm in the Castro, let's have a late brunch. I know, I'll try Jake's On Market, formerly 2223, the same owners have reopened this new concept place. And by new concept I mean serving pricey versions of salads, sandwiches and burgers--trying to be a casual homey neighborhood spot like say Toast or The Cove, though the previous place felt homier.
Since I was by myself I just bellied up to the bar to eat and after taking a bit to peruse the menu I settled on the pulled pork sandwich with salad and decided to throw in a side of sweet potato tater tots.
Now service at 2223 was always spotty and sometimes food took some time to come and sadly that much hasn't changed at this place. However, the food was pretty good, but that can't be said so much for Jake's. When my sandwich arrived finally (took about 20 minutes or so) the presentation looked good but the follow through wasn't. As for the good part--the tater tots were hot and tasty--though they served them with a side of ranch dressing which doesn't work, it's like sweet on sweet. Sweet potato tots need a sauce that has some kick to it to offset the their sweetness, this was a bit like adding sugar to honey. The salad, while a nice mix of greens, carrots, cherry tomatoes and what I think was shredded rhubarb was covered in a dressing that was too tangy and a bit bitter. The slaw on the sandwich was okay but for some odd reason they decided to put melted cheddar on pulled port--that was already covered in sauce. But the real sin here was the pork--over cooked and dry--even with the sauce--and then the sauce, ugh, it had a metallic aftertaste that was very unpleasant and not even the cheese and the slaw could overcome it. I took a small bite or two of just the meat first and then thought maybe I just need to try it all together so took two bites out of the whole sandwich but it did not help and I couldn't finish it.
Here's where the whole experience crashed and burned for me. After sitting there for about 10 minutes not finishing my food the bartender finally comes over and says can I box that up for you and I go ugh, no thank you. He says okay, takes my plate, then leaves the check and says I can pay when I'm ready. He didn't ask if I liked my food, didn't wonder why I only took a couple bites and left a whole sandwich, didn't offer alternatives, didn't call a manager, nothing. Didn't seem to care. This galled me to no end, I worked in restaurants for over 10 years and feel I know how things are done, can be done and should be done and THIS WAS NOT IT. While I'm not above stiffing someone I did at least leave a $2 tip, paid the bill and left.
A few blocks away I ran into some friends of mine and with the experience still fresh in my mind I relayed it to them and they said--wow--the same things happened to them--slow service, middling food and the waiter didn't really ask about their food either. So at least I can say it wasn't just me and while two instances doesn't necessarily make it common it was enough for me to not want a return visit to Jake's.