Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Off the Map: How to Make $8 Seem Overpriced, Seattle Edition

$6 Breakfast Happy Hour -- Toulouse Petit Kitchen and Lounge, Seattle, WA
Toulouse Petit Kitchen and Lounge

The first thing you need to know about Toulouse Petit Kitchen and Lounge in Seattle is that their breakfast happy hour does NOT, contrary to popular (read: Food Network) belief, cost $6.

It costs $8.

Highway robbery, Toulouse.  Way to let your Best Thing I Ever Ate "fame" go to your head.

What Is This -- 50 Cents Per Item on the Plate?!
Indeed, it seems as though once Melissa D'Arabian featured the restaurant on the BANG FOR THE BUCK episode of the program, Toulouse Petit decided to get their two-dollars-worth out of their newfound customers.
"Scenic," Except for, Well, ALL the Wires
And as two such customers, Vodka and her Seattle-based friend, Chianti, stumble into the place awash in giggles at their own idiocy.  You see, we have just come from an epic battle with the city's self-parking machines, during which Chianti pulled up to not one, not two, but THREE different parking spots, got out of the car... and discovered that the parking meter "wasn't working."

Needless to say, said meters were working.  We just didn't know how to use them.
And Being That It's 9am, We Can't Even Blame Our Usual Scapegoat
Anyway, it is in this moronic frame of mind that we enter Toulouse and are seated at an enormous corner booth, a happenstance that makes us quite pleased.
We Like an Unobstructed View of Our Minions
Unfortunately, these feelings of contentedness dissipate the moment we are made aware of this price gouging on this happy hour.
PS Toulouse -- We Never Feel Guilty for Day-Drinking
Ordering a French Press coffee (which, unlike last time Vodka came into contact with such a machine, she now knows how to use) to share, we set about choosing our breakfast dishes.
All These New-Fangled Contraptions Nowadays....
Chianti goes for the eggs florentine with arugula and tomatoes, and Vodka picks the cured pork cheeks confit hash (but only because it was the one Melissa D'Arabian recommended on Best Thing I Ever Ate).
They Like Their Eggs Poached in Seattle...
...Needless to Say, Ginger Would Hate It Here
After the waitress asks which of the 97 egg varieties Vodka would like on the hash, our plates arrive and look... okay.  Admittedly, the plates seem a bit large for the portions (or else, the portions are just made smaller for the "cheapskate" diners).
Here's a Hint: Don't Serve Skimpy Portions on a Serving Platter
Vodka's plate features bite-size pieces of pork, potato, and various other vegetables, all topped by the two eggs, which she quickly pierces with her fork.
Close-Up to Counteract the Fun-Size Plates
Trying to spread the (rather skimpy) yolk across the plate, she takes her first bite.

"How is it?" Chianti asks.

"It needs flavor," Vodka responds without affect.  Confirming through a few more forkfuls that the dish is entirely devoid of seasoning, Vodka begins piling on the salt and pepper.
Guess What? Still Dull
When even her favorite "condiments" don't result in anything more than a tasteless plate, she begins dumping on -- get this -- hot sauce.  HOT SAUCE!  We don't use hot sauce!  We have weak spice palates!  Clearly, this is a dire situation.
Hey Toulouse -- Next Time, How About a Bottle of Ketchup?
Chianti is similarly underwhelmed, if a tad less hostile, about her eggs florentine, and by the end of the meal, half of our food remains on the gargantuan plates, despite the relatively meager portions.
How Much Tomato Did you Spare There? An Eighth of One?
Even $8 seems too much to spend for these breakfast platters, and we leave with absolutely no desire to return to Toulouse Petit again.  Of course, if the happy hour had still cost $6, we might have been willing to give them a second chance.  Inflation, Toulouse, is not your friend

And neither, it seems, is hot sauce.

Toulouse Petit Kitchen and Lounge's $6 Breakfast Happy Hour: 2 stars

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