So after a round of dogwalking in the cemetary, I offered to take the Sig Fig out to lunch. We settled on the Dogwood Cafe because it’s quite close to the residence of said dog, and because it’s one of those places we really want to like. It’s a step down in pretentiousness and style from the Alchemist, but I think we want to like it for some of the same reasons: good beer selection, a cozy atmosphere, and general convenience. Unlike the Alchemist, however, the Dogwood doesn’t have stellar service to keep us coming back despite mediocre fare.
We walked in at perhaps quarter after twelve to find the place totally empty. By the time we left there were two other tables of lunchers, but the place was by no means hoppin. You’d think such a dearth of customers would lead to snappy service, but you’d be totally mistaken. It took forever to get two simple sandwiches, one of which didn’t even require any cooking. (Mine, for the record, involved bacon. And grilling. And a side of fries.) Our waitress was pleasant enough, but didn’t acknowledge that we’d aged several years before our food arrived.
As for the food, it was sort of ho-hum. The Sig Fig’s veggie wrap was quite tasty–good selection of veggies, well-dressed without being overdressed. But then there was the issue of the bacon bit on her pickle (note: actual bacon bit, not vegan bacon imitation often sprinkled on salads) and the piece of what appeared to be sausage in the second half of the sandwich. I guess we should feel lucky that she ate that half second, or she would’ve enjoyed significantly less of the wrap. Despite being an omnivore myself, I can really viscerally empathize with a veghead biting into a piece of meat. It’s just gross, and there’s not really an excuse.
My food was decent, if totally uninspired–a turkey blt panini, with some very decent fries. (Sea salt makes all the difference.) I couldn’t help but compare to the last blt I’d ordered, which was some time ago at James’ Gate. That version wasn’t grilled but came on a delightful ciabatta roll, had some herbed mayo for zing, and was all around much tastier and fresher.
Oh, also? They probably make their own pickles, and they’re not very good.
Thus, the Dogwood Cafe receives a rating of “we’ll probably end up here again, but maybe next time we’ll be in the mood for beer and pizza and be sort of fine instead of mildly disappointed.”