Sunday, January 5, 2014

Corner Bakery Cafe Food Review

Club Panini on Sourdough

My last visit to Corner Bakery Cafe was, in a word... a disaster. Granted, it was at their Bethesda location; and not their downtown eatery at the corner of 19th & L Streets. What difference does that make, you ask? Aside from almost 13 miles in distance, it means demonstrably better customer service (they actually say "hi," and stuff like that) not to mention lightning-fast food preparation (comparatively speaking.) Good company helps a lot too; and how do you do better than your Mom, on her birthday no less... Happy B-day Mama! In other words, the difference is night and day.

Lest we get too carried away, let's talk turkey as in the Club Panini on Sourdough (smoked turkey, bacon, plum tomatoes, white cheddar cheese and mayo.) That's what I ordered (minus the cheese & mayo) for the friendly price of $7.89. Mom got an Uptown Turkey for a dime more... no mayo either: Like Mom, like son. After an enthusiastic & friendly greeting (maybe they should train the employees at Bethesda?) I took a chance, and asked if I could have roasted red peppers (available on another s'wich) in place of the cheese & mayo I took off the table. Great news... She said, "yes." A fountain drink with a free cup of water brought my total to $17.47. Each sandwich came with a bag of kettle chips and a pickle.

As I mentioned, service was swift; and it wasn't long before we were chowing down. Mom loved hers (she has a habit of loving everything... positive thinking, God bless her) and mine was pretty good too, although I missed out on the promised red peppers. I wasn't crushed, mind you; but I must admit... I was looking forward to them. Paninis are a breeze to make at home; but that doesn't take away from good quality ingredients (both turkey and bacon) although I'd much prefer three pieces of bacon to two (especially small pieces.) A leaf of lettuce wouldn't hurt either.

My fountain drink (caffeine-free Diet Coke) tasted soapy; and the pickle spear looked sorta shabby, to be frank. Chips were OK (not much salt.) The dining area was spacious and clean; and outside of the missing red peppers, was fairly impeccable. I've been here during weekday lunch (trust me, it's hoppin') and the staff seems more than capable of handling a large crowd (better than any other Corner Bakery, in fact.)

All in all, it's hard to find fault with a nice sandwich and lunch with Mom. Perhaps I should take her with me more often?