My wife and I enjoy discovering new local restaurants through Groupon (www.Groupon.com) and were excited to try JP Pancake on her day off. When we arrived there were only a few people in the dining room and the lone waitress invited us to seat ourselves at a rather large booth. When the owner/manager saw that we wanted something smaller he invited us to take a seat at a cozier table for two. I eventually told my wife that I wanted to move because I felt like I was sitting in the kitchen (it was actually a prep area for the wait staff but there was a rather unclean looking stainless steel piece of equipment next our table that didn’t help to work up my appetite).
I’m not usually a pancake kind of person but I wanted to make sure I ordered some since the word was a major part of the name of the restaurant. I was disappointed that they didn’t offer a multigrain choice. It would seem to me that any place that specializes in pancakes would offer something more than a traditional pancake batter. To their credit they do offered countless ways to top their pancakes.
I ordered an oven-baked omelet with pancakes. The pancakes were average as was the omelet. I was surprised that the onions were not sautéed. Thankfully I enjoy red onion so I didn’t mind that they were raw. My wife ordered the Belgian waffle with an egg over-medium and sausage. She was disappointed that the waffle was “leathery” which indicated that it wasn’t fresh to order (she commented that she’s had better waffles at a Choice Hotel complimentary breakfast bar.) Her egg was under cooked which caused her to ask for a second plate (since she has boundary issues with cross contaminating her food – specifically egg yolks and syrups). Thankfully, she enjoyed the sausage.
When we paid the bill the owner/manager (I assume it was the manager because I could not imagine that the owner would wear flip flops in and out of the kitchen…that was a bit distracting) approached me to inform me that they charge $1 for credit card charges under $10 (my bill came to $8 after the Groupon was applied). I never carry cash, and unfortunately my wife didn’t have any on here. The manager’s body language seemed to suggest that we could run across the parking lot and pull out cash at the bank’s ATM thereby avoiding the charge (but in my case I would have accrued an even greater foreign ATM fee) so I just paid the extra dollar. I have to admit that it’s been a long time since I came across a minimum charge fee…anywhere.
Overall, the food was no better than average and JP Pancake did nothing to set itself apart from Denny’s. While I wish them luck in the future I think I’ll pass on their Groupon the next time it comes up.
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