Sunday, 24 February 2013

You Made The List

Dear Anchor Bar,

You made my list. How disappointing for you.

I heard nothing but hype and excitement about this new restaurant in Hamilton. Originally a staple in Buffalo, New York the franchise has now expanded into Canada, knocking local independently owned restaurants like Walt's Grill and Bar by the wayside.

My sister and I were frequent diners at Walt's and were very upset when we heard we would have to find a new place to go on our sister dates. The location was just so convenient. We could easily go for a lovely dinner and then head to the movies in Jackson Square.

When Anchor Bar opened we decided to go try it out in the hopes that we would have a new favourite restaurant in the same location as our old one. Unfortunately all of those dreams were dashed after our very first visit.

At first glance we were very impressed. The decor is fun and there was a big crowd of people in there at 3 pm. We were seated and given menus. They have a really big menu with lots of different choices. Unfortunately Anchor Bar is known for their wings but upon inspection they don't really have anything special about their wings. They were really expensive and only came in normal flavours, except for the suicide and drop anchor flavours which are so hot you have to sign something to order them. We decided we could get cheaper wings another time from somewhere else.

The second thing I noticed was their pops are $2.25 and they don't do refills for anyone over 16. Seriously? That's just ridiculous. Walt's had refills AND free nachos while you waited for your food. We both ordered water. We had decided on  the 6 cheese anchor dip for an appetizer and we both ordered the chicken wing crunch melt for our entrees.

Our waitress and the man who brought our food to the table gushed about how delicious our choices were and how they're the best thing on the menu. It was around that time that we noticed they had brought out our entrees but not our appetizer. Five minutes later our appetizer came out. The waitress seemed confused at our unhappiness. We had to explain to her that an appetizer should come before all the other food and that by the time we would get to it now it would be cold. The lightbulb seemed to go on then and she said that she would take it off our bill and away from the table apparently removing a plate from the table take ten minutes.

By that point neither of us were super impressed with the place but we tried to have an open mind. I turned to my entree which did look interesting. The less interesting thing was that there was hair on my sandwich. UGH. I decided that since it took her 10 minutes to clear our unwanted appetizer it would likely take an hour to get a new sandwich so I decided to eat the side that didn't have hair on it. Luckily for me after 5 bites I decided that it was too disgusting to finish.

My sister (who is 8 months pregnant and eats EVERYTHING) ate less than half of hers. It was not at all what was in the menu. It said it was  boneless wings basted in their FAMOUS mild wing sauce, topped with buffalo mozzarella on a roasted garlic hoagie bun topped with hickory smoked chips.

What we got was rotisserie chicken with lettuce and tomato topped with hickory sticks covered in Frank's red hot sauce all piled onto a foot long hotdog bun. Since when is Frank's mild by any stretch of the imagination? Is it their FAMOUS sauce? Also it made the chips soggy and the chicken tasted disgusting. Their only saving grace was their french fries which were actually decent.

I put that sh*t on does Anchor Bar apparently.

Our fabulous (note sarcasm) meal was all rounded off by a waitress who didn't bring us a bill but handed me a debit"Can I see my bill? Also I'm paying cash..."

When we left the waitress apologized for her bad service and for the possibly poor food quality too. REALLY? What else do you offer? If your service and food is not good what am I paying for? The decor?

To say the least I would not recommend Anchor Bar to anybody. I doubt I will ever return there. If for some reason you are still interested in trying them out you can check out their website here.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Driver's Beware!

I have a confession to make. This won't be surprising if you know me but if you don't...ohhh boy. Okay here it goes!

I can't drive! ...shock, gasp! I know, I know. I'm waaaay too old to not drive but by golly I just never got it. I had my G1 around 5 years ago and had a few "mom" lessons, but I was a disaster. Just terrible. I ran stop signs multiple times and was so nervous that I would end up crying while driving.

I've decided to give it another go.  I have had a few "dad" lessons which have gone great and my aunt even took me out one time, but I start driver's ed tomorrow. I'm taking it at Universal Driving School. I'm terrified that I'm going to be the oldest person in my class. Oh well.

I'm still nervous.. My sister and brother-in-law were in a pretty bad wreck this past summer out near Trinity Church Road, that makes me more anxious than I ever was before. I've realized that I need to do this. I am letting career doors close just because I don't have my license.  That's just pure craziness.

My bro-in-law and sis's car. Thank goodness they were both okay!

Anyways this had a point. My point is that Hamilton roads...SUCK!

Brucedale Rd in Hamilton. AKA. Deathtrap Road!
My street maybe isn't as bad as Brucedale but holy heck it's bad. It never gets plowed and people park on both sides of the street. I was driving with my dad yesterday and it was super. We were all over the place and I felt pretty good and then BAM we came down my street and almost hit another car. Confidence shattered.

That being said I'm glad that I'm learning in the winter because I need to know how to drive defensively. Especially in this city! Ugh.

Apparently Ontario has some problems with roads. So much so that there is an annual vote on Ontario's worst roads. Read all about it here.

So wish me luck as I embark on this terrifying road to a driver's license. I can't wait to have it. People should be worried. Look both ways before you cross the streets!!