Gastropod / Epic Ale
After getting so much good press we decided to give this place a try.
Maybe they were having a bad night...
First experience when walking in was the smell of the kitchen.
Bad sign. Exhaust fan not working?
Then we noticed they didn't even have an exhaust fan.
I thought there was a kitchen in the back but no, they were cooking behind the bar and there is no hood or exhaust fan.
Order a selection of Epic's beers and they all tasted very similar - spoiled and sour.
The food: an oyster dish with miso. OK but the oysters were set on small pebbles of rock salt that stuck to the bottom of the oysters. When I tipped an oyster into my mouth, the salt came with it spoiling whatever taste there was. No big deal, use a fork right? Well one of the things I like about oysters is the jus and hard to get that with a fork.
On to the steak and "Yorkshire" pudding.
Now Yorkshire pudding is cooked in the drippings from the roast in a hot oven puffing up golden and savory.
We got something but it wasn't a Yorkshire pudding.
The steak? Should have sent it right back but after the long wait we were hungry. Here's why.
We didn't even notice that the waitron didn't ask how we liked the steak cooked until it came out pre sliced by the kitchen. It was cooked far below rare. And the steak had a nasty piece of gristle running right through it.
Could have sent it back but being presliced by the kitchen it might have taken another half hour to make a new one.
The "Yorkshire" pudding? An undercooked mass of dough at the bottom.
Poor experience all around.
Here's the kicker.
Went to the bar to pay. The guy asked about our food. I told him, quietly as I didn't really want to flame him in front of other diners.
He and the cook seemed absolutely dumbfounded. They didn't even have one thing to say in response except a weak, "sorry."
I later googled and found out that those two guys weren't just staff. They were the chef and the brewmaster. The very two who owned their respective places.
Before posting this I tried to give them another shot by emailing through their website. No response.
Will I give them another shot?
No. There are too many places to try in Seattle that I won't risk going back.
Especially after no response from their website message I sent and the weak response from them in person.
Too bad really because the location and setting is cozy and the place has possibilities. But fellas, get a hood, get some unspoiled beer, learn your craft, have a little customer relations, if you don't want comments, don't let your website appear that you do. And best of luck. I really wish you well but there's a lot of work to do. My money and my time were wasted and you act like you don't even care.
This is what I was worried about...
With all the publicity about Gastropod, I feel like a lot of new folks are venturing over there without a full sense of what it is. I've been heading to Epic Ales (and the various weekend food popups Cody has had) for a few years now, so the addition of Gastropod was, in my mind, more of a bonus than anything else.
It's really not a full scale restaurant and someone going in with those expectations (as it seems you did) would be understandably disappointed. I think you have to think of it more like a food truck with a physical location (and not even in a Marination Station kind of way). It's good food, but not always perfectly executed. It's the two of them (actually really 1 of them) putting together some interesting dishes.
At the end of the day, I think l like Gastropod (and Epic Ales) for what it is, a passionate (and often eccentric) brewer pairing up with a cook trying to do some unique things. I think you go there more "curious" than expecting to be impressed.
Well that's a good opinion in support.
I'm not sure why you are defending them on my experience.
Heck, all I wanted was a beer and a solid meal.
Heard good things about the place.
I ordered something traditional.
Unfortunately they failed on the beer and the meal and their lack of caring was the tipping point to this post.
Its really no big dea.
That's what I like about Chow - good honest reviews - and warnings.