Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Florida >
Apr 3, 2008 10:08 AM

Downhill, or just a bad night

I ate at Big Pink last night with my kids. Despite an excellent Brazilian waitress, I was shocked by how bad so many things were. From the stench outside, which of course is probably not their fault, to the massive puddle, to the essence -- food unlike anything I have ever eaten there. The famous bucket of fries looked like a sea creature or La Sagrada in Barcelona; everything was stuck together, not crisp, and seemingly deep fried in a combination of oil and paste. The mammoth chicken sandwich had to have been microwaved; there was less brown present than a Mitt Romney campaign rally in Maine. My Thai salad had julienned iceberg lettuce like the displays at Publix and two sauces that mentioned Sri Racha but couldn't locate it with a GPS. At the tables nearby, the sawing I heard made me want to go buy a few shakers of Accent; the noise sounded like the kitchen of a Greek restaurant catering to the British budget tourist with scratching, clanging, and clawing. The water was cold though, and the ketchup came out. Myles Chefetz needs to take a look quick! I have always had a reasonable experience there, but this was horrific.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Not surprised at your comments, sad thing is people settle for that quality. Anytime I went for lunch (which hasn't been for a few months) the place is packed. If you are packing them in, why concern yourself with quality of food?

    1. I agree that some things there are mediocre (like the stuck together, not crisp fries). But it's still a pretty good brunch place...

      1. re: Big Stink


        BRAVO! You are officially the funniest hound.

        Woof woof woof! ::raising the roof::

        La Sagrada! Oh shiiii_


        7 Replies
        1. re: advisor_Girl

          We went there a few weeks ago for breakfast, thought we would have a nice breakfast before going to the beach, we were there with a toddler (remember that for later). It took 10 minutes for a waiter to come by and take our drink order, she then disappeared for 10 more minutes. We then place our order and I asked if I could have some sliced banana for my son, that was brough immediately....then the wait began. My husband ordered an Omlette, I ordered scrambled eggs....we waited for almost an hour for food....meanwhile my son lost it....and was simply miserable.

          We were hungry when the food arrived. The eggs were cold and hard, the potatoes were actually inedible, the toast was limp and the sausage actually looked like the brown and serve you get at a 7-11.

          I WILL NEVER GO BACK...and I plan on telling everyone how awful it was. If I were the owner I would be embarressed. I understand now why Michael Schwartz jumped ship and went on the open Michael's Genuine. I think I might have gotten a better (cheaper) meal at Denny's

          1. re: Miami Foodie Girl

            Service has always been pretty uniformly bad there, food quality can be variable - sometimes good, sometimes lousy.

            Just so nobody gets confused, Michael Schwartz, now of Michael's Genuine Food & Drink, was head chef at Nemo for some time (and it was great while he was there), which has same owners as Big Pink (and Prime 112 and Shoji Sushi).

            1. re: Frodnesor

              michael schwartz was chef & part owner of big pink, shoji sushi & nemo. he sold his interest in those restaurants 6 years ago

              1. re: genuinechef

                ^ ^ ^ "genuine chef"

                Are you the M of MGFD?

                Excellent! The hounds are pretty smitten with you - Welcome!


              2. re: Frodnesor

                All of these places were good if not great at one point. I remember Shoji being the best sushi place on the beach - fresh and creative. Then Shin left and oh well. When Big Pink first opened it was clean and had a kitschy (sp) diner vibe the filled the void after Johnny V's hogies and Jonathan Eisman's diner. It was one of the best places to watch Heat playoff games. It'd be packed inside and the outside tables were moved so people could watch the game through the window.

                Both of these places have gone downhill yet thrive because of their location and a clientele that's probably mainly tourist and some locals hoping that a return visit would bring about good memories from the past.

                1. re: lax2mia


                  Factor in the "automatically added gratuity" and you get a real recipe for disaster. We (locals) still hit Big Pink for the fat mexi-breakfast burrito and the place is not clean, not well managed, very loud (concrete floors, steel fittings and plexi topped tables are acoustically challenging) but the service is South Beach Shite. And yes - it's often VERY crowded. So what would motivate them to tidy the common areas and rest rooms, lower the noise level and TRAIN the wait staff?

                  Uhhhh- nothing.

                  We try to sit outside when weather permits.

                  And to the very funny OP - the area around the alley adjoining the "open kitchen" windows is DEFINITELY best avoided. It blends in with the BO of the Ted's Hideaway "Regulars..."



                  1. re: advisor_Girl

                    As Jay Z says, "Thank you, thank you, you are far too kind! Thanks for the photo of the fries!