1. Maxim's Cafe
Prior to heading here for a family friend meet-up, I briefly skimmed over the reviews for this cafe/patisserie. The blurbs that had been posted were, unfortunately, largely negative. Many had complained of extremely poor service, but had enjoyed the cakes decently enough to order takeout and devour them elsewhere.
Considering that many Chinese-owned diners weren't renowned for having formidable customer service, I hadn't walked in expecting too much. But I suppose I had needed to lessen my standards even more.
There was also an extensive selection of cakes and pastries in display cases near the cashier. Truthfully, they were quite average in appearance, but the vast selection had made them seem extravagant compared to other cafes.
Despite it being a rather lazy Wednesday afternoon, the three waitresses showed absolutely no signs of efficiency. It almost felt as if the pace of business dictated their rate of processing orders. It took all of ten minutes to flag one of them down to order the items, and another ten to fifteen before any items were brought to our table. And as for those complimentary drinks? Well, you can bet it required the same amount of time.
While slow service is one thing, poor attitude is of a separate matter. Names of dishes were not announced when they were crudely set down, nor were smiles present on the waitress' face. I had also taken the liberty of asking for the Wi-Fi password at some point during our short-lived stay, and was less than pleased to have a reply harshly tossed in my general direction as the girl stomped away. The truth behind the many reviews I'd read was staring me in the face.
Last but not least, it is important to note that they demand a minimum charge of five dollars per person, along with an automatic 10% service charge (before tax) for parties of all sizes and an automatic 15% service charge for parties consisting of over six people.
Talk about being ruthless. Had this not been a gathering scheduled in advance, I do not believe I would have pondered the idea of entering this service-less cafe. This was my first experience at Maxim's, and will certainly be my last as well.
(Side note: Their washrooms are in dire need of an upgrade, paint job, and regular maintenance. While one toilet paper dispenser was empty, the only other stall had issues with water pressure.)
I also spotted a ONE OK ROCK poster casually hanging by the door. (Hmmmmmm)
After my previous failed attempt at trying Pinkberry at their new Square One location, I was finally able to get my hands on their Green Tea and Chocolate Hazelnut frozen yogurt (this time sans-toppings for the purpose of making comparisons). It doesn't seem like they're offering waffle cones yet, but it is my sincere hope that they will eventually. I mean, where else am I supposed to satisfy cravings for slightly tart, brainfreeze-inducing green tea froyo with mochi pieces? The staff were incredibly nice, albeit evidently still adjusting to the groove. The one guy that served me was knowledgeable about the products the location had to offer, as well as extremely patient with my indecisiveness and photo-taking requirements. It's a guarantee that I'll be back again!
9. Homemade Durian and Peach Smoothie
More photos can be found HERE !