Sauceman's Restaurant in Charlotte, NC
For the last year I have excitedly watched as a restaurant was being built in Southend (at the corner of Tryon and West). It finally opened last week and sadly is a big let down.
1) the pricing was very high especially for a restaurant where you order at a counter (our bill for 2 ppl was $22). A personal thin crust pizza was $8-$9 and definitely was not big enough to really bring home leftovers. If the pizza was great I could understand this- unfortunately it was soggy and the dough and sauce was flavorless (and definitely was not what I consider a thin crust). I had to take 2 napkins to soak up the grease and liquid from the toppings before eating it. After trying it my boyfriend and I both commented that we should make our own pizza and bring it to the owner to see what good thin crust pizza tastes like (pizza 1 star out of 5).
2) my boyfriend ordered a french dip- the cheese had no flavor- he liked the au jus dipping sauce I found it to be salty and lacking in something. We originally were going to split the pizza and the sandwich but after taking a bite I gladly let him have the whole sandwich and half of my pizza. The fries also look unappetizing- they were white and looked like they had freezer burn. They tasted ok (like typical fastfood fries). They should be making their own fries if they are going to charge around $7.75 for a sandwich and fry there or at least have them look appetizing. Also I have no idea what their small sandwich size would look like as the regular is not that big (although definitely large enough to fill you up). Again if the food was great I would be fine with a $7.75 price tag. Unfortunately this food should have been less than $5. They have a 1/2 bbq chicken for $11. For $11 I can get 2 full rotessiere chickens.
I emailed my friend saying I tried it and it appears my experience was similar to hers. She wrote me: Funny you said that about saucemans….I have already decided I am never going back. XXX had a sandwich the other day and said it was ok. Actually it was the Italian sausage sandwich- he said he was expecting a sausage link or slices, and it was ground sausage like sloppy joes. Then I ordered take out and they screwed up my order. The pasta tasted like I made it myself w/Ragu – and their specialty is mixed noodles –spirals and rigatoni. Who does that? And you couldn’t tell there was meat in my sausage pasta dish. Too bad because they spent so much time fixing it up.
I hope for the owner's sake that things get fixed and they work on perfecting recipes and getting prices to line up better. Sadly I am not sure if I am going to go back. I think I will just stick to the sandwiches at Common Market when I am in that area.
You are right that it is not out of line with other places. If the food was great than I would have no problem with the pricing but I think my issue is that if I am paying prices that are on the higher end for that type of restaurant than I expect my food to be high quality and delicious.
For example- Brixx individual pizzas are between $9-10. I find them to be a great deal because they are on the larger side, taste great and have high quality ingredients. Also- Brixx is a sit down place. When I compare that to the pizza I had at Sauceman's I then feel like the pizza there is very overpriced in comparison.