Thursday, October 7, 2010

Mass Production at Kerbey Lane Cafe

Ohhhh, Kerbey Lane Cafe, how you've disappointed Breakfast In Austin! Pumpkin pancakes! 30 years in business! Spectacular presentation! I only wish this was my 1st time visiting with no knowledge or regard for you...but because it wasn't, I returned a patron with high hopes based on your prior consistency. My expectation didn't do you any favors, Kerbey Lane Cafe, though I can probably forgive you and will most likely return.

My expectations? I expect a 30-45 minute wait, I understand your enterprising move farther up 183 to accomodate more people, I get how busy and popular you are in all of your locations and I can even sympathize with the challenge in mass producing food and living up to the Kerbey Lane Cafe name. But it's your name! Your Patrons! Their experience! Really, I'm not complaining. Read all my other reviews...

After listening to the cool blues guitarist outside and watching kids dancing & adults fidgeting, our pager vibrated and we were ushered by the hostess to our extra large and comfy booth. In moments we were greeted by a friendly server and placed our drink orders. I happily accepted and enjoyed my cappuccino with froth. It was hot and substantially caffeinated. Side note! On a Sunday you're prohibited from ordering a bloody mary or any other alcohol for that matter until noon. BUT if you order food FIRST (before noon on Sunday), THEN you're within legal means to order the cheer. Patrons can thank the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission for this little law.

After taking a few minutes to scour the breakfast items, we ordered and then waited an additional 30 minutes for our plated food. Stomachs growling, our plates were finally presented! Unfortunately the items were not hot and had that semi-lackluster, muted appearance, where you just kinda know your food sat in a pick up station for several minutes. Ugh. All joking aside, we've all had that moment where you suspect complaining probably won't do any good. Especially after waiting 60 minutes. In the interest of hunger (we were nearly cannibalistic) we sucked up our disappointment and ate. THANKFULLY, there was still that glorious flavor in my Eggs Francisco, but I just couldn't get that past satisfaction back by eating a lukewarm meal...

The items...

I ordered the Eggs Francisco consisting of an English Muffin piled with scrambled eggs, bacon, tomato, avocado and a generous heap of creamy queso with sides of seasonal fruit and shriveled home fries - all for $7.95. I would highly recommend this offering to anyone because of it's flavor.

The 14 year old boy ordered a Breakfast Platter with 2 scrambled eggs, 2 pancakes (blackberry to be specific) and mandatory bacon for $5.55. Bacon was the only hit for him. He was disgruntled with the cold pancakes and flat eggs, leaving most of the food on his plate.

G-Man ordered the Biscuits, Scrambled Eggs & Gravy plate with 2 sausage patties for $5.95. His comments? Flavorful gravy but lackluster and hardly warm. He cleaned his plate though - obviously hungry.

So, should you go? Yes. Based on my past experiences at Kerbey Lane Cafe, I'd recommend a trip and the Eggs Francisco or any variety of pancake. They've always done a fine job! Unfortunately we caught KLC on a bad day. In the future, I'll personally avoid the weekend and hope for fresher food at a different location Monday through Friday.

It's all about the feast, not the famine!

To learn more about Kerbey Lane Cafe, go to:
To scour Kerbey Lane Cafe's breakfast items:

Pros: Bustling, people watching, great menu selection, service, guitar guy outside, established repuation
Cons: Cold food, waited 30 minutes for a table for 3, waited 30 minutes for our food, understaffed during their busiest time
Suggestions: More staff on the weekends? Back up runners from pick up counter to table?When you have this many Patrons & mass production there is so much room for error and less than stellar experiences

Kerbey Lane Cafe has four (4) locations to serve you:
Northwest ~ 13435 Hwy 183 N., Ste. 415, Austin, TX 78750 ~ 512.258.7757
South ~ 2700 S. Lamar, Austin, TX 78704 ~ 512.445.4451
UT ~ 2606 Guadalupe St., Austin, TX 78705 ~ 512. 477.5717
Central ~ 3704 Kerbey Ln., Austin, TX 78732 ~ 512.451.1436
Southwest ~ 4301 William Cannon, Austin, TX 78749 ~ 512.899.1500

1 comment:

  1. Inventiveness and legacy cannot undue my experience of waiting. And waiting some more to then have to endure dry, cold eggs and tough sausage. I was reminded of the chow line in the Army.

    Given a choice of waiting 5 minutes at Dennys or 30+ minutes at KLC, I'll take Dennys.