Turtle Jacks – Mapleview Mall, Burlington, Ontario http://www.turtlejacks.com/
Eating with Matthew (chef)
Our goal at midnight on a Thursday was to go to Earl’s in the mall for some food and wine like we usually do after work. Turns out there was a dance party taking place and we didn’t have the energy to act young and hip, so we wandered next door to Turtle Jacks. We wandered onto the patio where there is an outside bar but the guy closing up outside told us that we should go in and he told us that the kitchen was open until 1am. We wandered inside to eat guilt free knowing that we had over an hour to order.
We weren’t greeted at the door, but didn’t expect much from the staff so late in the day. We both like to sit at the bar so we pulled up two seats and noticed three staff wandering around behind the bar. We were passed approximately seven times by these three ‘servers’ before Matt actually stopped one of them and asked for menus. She very stoically fetched us menus, whispered into the bartender’s ear and walked away. The bartender then came over and asked us what we wanted to drink; we replied that we wanted to see a wine list and we could use a couple waters. It was very clear that our insane request to see a wine list really put her out as she pouted and moped away.
When she returned, Matt ordered a beer, we ordered our food and then, ten minutes later when she finished flirting desperately with two guys sitting down the bar from us, she took my wine order for a bottle of Ironstone, Cabernet Sauvignon, California. If memory serves me, the bartender opened the bottle of wine, I approved it, she set it down on the bar, and Matt and I poured the wine for the remainder of our stay. Again, I asked for water.
Avacado Chicken Taco (to share)
Steak Fajitas (Matt)
Small Caesar, add Salmon (Me)
The tacos came out quite quickly (not surprising when the cooks are aching to clean up) and were exactly what we expected; they were tasty and served with hot sauce and filled the void in our stomachs. I asked for water for the third time and finally she succumbed to the instinct one usually has as a server to actually serve people. As per usual, Matt finished his taco before I made it to my second bite. As I finished up and we awaited our second course I vented about work; more specifically, one heinous bitch who spent her night acting as though the world owed her something. Our busy night working at a restaurant was pretty much the topic of conversation for the rest of the evening. We had spent our evening smiling at assholes and all we really wanted was someone to smile at us; it turns out that we were asking for too much.
When the main course came out, everything was as expected. Overcooked dry salmon on a decent Caesar salad for me; Matt got the same fajitas that you get at any chain restaurant. I poured the remaining hot sauce over my salmon to give it some life and I ate what I could. He devoured his meal diligently while we both watched the bartender almost fall out of her ‘uniform’ multiple times as she was throwing herself at the only other two patrons in the place. No quality check. No refill on the water.
We literally shoved our plates towards her when we wanted to get the bill; she was truly oblivious (or expressing her anger towards us for coming in so late to eat). I suppose the requirements for hiring there are more based on waist and breast size than actual experience.
It was around 1:30 am when we left. To be positive, we were fed and had a buzz; our main goal when we walked into the restaurant.
Final Bill: $103
Tip: 3.5 % (do you know how bad you have to be to get tipped like that)
Overall Grade: 32%
Likeliness of Return: 1%