The HOP- Never Again (sigh)
So for those who have been on the boards for a long time know that I am a fan of the HOP. However, I haven't been able to deny that it has gone hill since Joan Olsen left. But I kept returning because... its close by, and its better than a lot of the pubs in the area. I also really still do like their sweet potato fries.
The general consensus on CH regarding the HOP is that if you aren't a "Regular", you get treated like crap. Being a regular, I haven't ever really encountered any rudeness. Yes, I have been a bit put off going a few times when food was forgotten or took a LONG time to come, but I have eventually given in and went back.
But never ever again. I see what everyones talking about now. On saturday, we went for dinner around 7:30 pm. Yes, a busy time, so we expected to wait for a table. We waited for about 20 minutes and then were seated. We then waited for 30 MINUTES before we finally had to get the server's attention asking him if he could at least take drink orders. He replied "Uh.. I'm in the middle... Fine! what do you want?"
We should have walked out then. The rest of the evening went like this. We ordered an appetizer, worried we wouldn't get mains for a while. It was another 25 minutes for the app, and another 25 minutes for the mains. In between courses, when we asked (nicely) if they were on the way, he RUDELY replied " Well, you ordered an appetiser so it takes a long time for the main!!" Even though we ordered them at the same time.
Again, we should have walked out. The main came, and we needed cutlery and condiments. These didnt come for another 10 minutes. Finally, we were fed up and after another rude comment from this particular server, we told him that we were really put off by his attitude, that we were regular customers and that now we wouldn't want to come anymore. Long story short... it ended up in a bit of a yelling match. We paid the bill, spoke to the bartender, who obviously knows us as regulars. He apologized but the damage had been done.
Now, I wouldn't even return to a restaurant if the service was that slow and unattentive. NEVERMIND the attitude we received. Forget it.
So CH, if you're thinking of visiting the HOP, dont bother unless you like to wait all night for a plate of fries, and you really like drama.
So, aside from NOT going to the HOP and telling the CH not to either, should I do something about this?
House on Parliament. Not being a regular, I never became one wholly due to the sort of treatment HungryAbbey received. They're complete drunk-with-power jerks serving up attitude and mediocre food.
I'm so sorry, Hungry, that you had to find out the hard way. You've always seemed very nice to me.
Ha, my sister is a waitress there and has been for years. I wonder if she has been responsible for any of the negative serving issues mentioned on this board. When my folks are in town they generally go there since my sister is usually working. The food used to be quite good all things considered but the last few times it's been underwhelming. As for service I find it overly familiar, like being snappy and abrupt is part of the charm. I think the servers feel like it's part of the ambience or something. I know some of the regulars do appreciate engaging in the back and forth but I can see how it would be off-putting to some, myself included.
I've been a regular for years, and amongst the regulars the service has become a bit of a bitter joke. Yes, it does get busy, but it's difficult to empathise when you see three of the wait staff chatting while the pub is three-quarters full. While membership might have its privileges, I've also crossed swords with a couple of the staff. I can't help but wonder whether the HoP's move next door might occasion a purge.
Just to register a slight disagreement with hungryabbey, while I thought that Joan Olsen was quite good, I thought that her successor Andrew Loft, while different, was her equal. He hasn't been there for a couple of years, though.
I haven't noticed a problem with the taste of the beer, frankly.
I'd agree with the observation that female staff are generally more congenial than the men, not that all the men are snappy.
What used to be the Cabbagetown Community Centre is now being renovated, and will be the new HoP.... in the fulness of time.