For the past several months, I have listened to a commercial advertising “San Diego Home Cooking Restaurant.” A lovely woman, with a decidedly East European accent has touted the home cooking of the four restaurants in the chain. Since all of those restaurants were far from my home in Ocean Beach, I have never tried them, even though the pictures of the meals served have been enticing. (Stephanie told us the owner was from Serbia.)
How pleased I was to see that the same restaurant is now located in Mission Valley – 967 Camino Del Rio South – when the old “Loves” restaurant used to be.
Two friends and I decided to try it out for breakfast this morning. We were seated almost immediately, and given menu’s. And then we waited, and waited, and waited for someone to offer us coffee, water, orange juice, etc. In fact, we were just about ready to walk out – after 25 minutes – when a delightful waitress – Stephanie – came and took our order. She told us what the specials were – although we had read them on entry to the restaurant. We gave her our drink order, and then we waited, and waited, and waited for them to arrive.
When they finally did, we gave her our order. I had a “Machaca scramble”; one friend had the special of the day, a “chili-cheese omelet; and the third person had a “Bacon and Two Eggs” order from the senior menu. (There are only 3 items on the breakfast menu for seniors.) She also ordered a cinnamon roll that was very large.
Once again we waited a long time before the meal was served to us, and although not hot, it was not cold either, and we did not send it back.
The orders are huge! The Machaca scramble had guacamole, sour cream, salsa, and bread or tortilla’s with it. In addition I had my choice of potatoes, fresh fruit, biscuit and gravy, cottage cheese, etc. (The omelets consisted of 4 eggs; two to many for my taste.) Although there was tomatoes, green pepper, etc. mixed with the Machaca, I would have been hard pressed to identify the meal as Machaca. It was tasty, but more like roast beef cooked with eggs. The Chili-cheese omelet came with a choice of items, and my friend ordered Biscuits and Gravy. That plate in itself was a meal. He said that everything was good and he might just order the Biscuit and Gravy as a meal next time. The senior meal was also filling, with eggs scrambled, bacon that was not cooked long enough, and an English Muffin. The Cinnamon Roll was large enough for the three of us, and there was some left to take home.
The total meal was $39.93, which included one coffee, one ice-tea and one tomato juice. Interesting to note that the ice tea was less money than the decaf coffee! At the bottom of the bill was a “tip” suggestion: 15% of the meal was $x.xx; 18% was $X.xx; and if you wanted to tip 20% that was also listed. A nice gesture when there are several people paying for their own meal.
My friends and I are of a mixed mind. I was ready to leave after the long wait; I was disappointed in the Machaca, my “measuring stick” of restaurants. My friends said that their meals were good and would come back again. The cinnamon roll was a bargain at $2.99. The biscuits and gravy can be had as a small order for $2.99 (1 biscuit, but a huge one) or a large order – 2 biscuits, for $4.99.
It seems to me that they have had enough time to iron out the kinks in the restaurant. The male that took us to our table should have brought us our drinks. The prices were reasonable – senior meal was $6.99; the Machaca plate was $9.99 and the Chili scramble was one of the specials of the day at $8.99. There was enough left over for another meal the following day.
I, however, will not return. My time is too valuable to sit around reading the menu; the wine menu, which is quite interesting, and watching the other people waiting to get their food. Too bad, because I shop in Mission Valley and it would be a nice place to have a snack before – or after – fighting the crowds.