Another weekend, another cafe. My husband and I decided to try a different one this time. We’ve been to a number of new cafes, we have a list of our favourite joints, but we still have many more to go to.
So we chose Epicuro in Damansara Uptown (they happen to have another branch in USJ). The reason why I chose it was because they served waffles, and my husband loves waffles (oh, by the way, he loves pancakes too).
As with most cafes in Klang Valley, Epicuro had the dark and cozy atmosphere going for them as well. Dark brown woody interior and exterior, with metal chairs and square or rectangular wooden tables with small metal buckets as the utensils holder and menus neatly placed on either side in front of customers.
What was missing was the cheery pop of greetings. No “Hi, welcome!” or “Welcome to Epicuro!”. It felt like stepping into a library managed by a strict librarian! What’s worse was the waitress who took our order. She did not smile once, and there wasn’t a trace of enthusiasm in her voice either. That was a bad first impression for me.
The atmosphere was pretty alright, good enough to read my book. There were other patrons in the cafe, but they were not too loud to distract me from my book. So, since they weren’t going to give me a hint of gratitude for giving them some business, I decided to read instead.
The first thing to arrive was my affogato. Presentation was simple. A small white jug of espresso and a tall martini of the dulce de leche (salted caramel) house-made ice cream. Already skeptical with the way the customer service went, I eyed my affogato warily and picked up the jug of espresso.
You can only guess what happened next. I feel the jug should be replaced because I could barely pour any espresso onto my ice cream without some of the liquid dribbling down the spout of the jug. It was ridiculous. That was another red mark on my mental clipboard of the place.
Thankfully, the affogato redeemed itself. Each spoonful resulted in burst of sweet and salty combination, and the strength of the bitter espresso melted along with it. It was good. Even my husband liked it, which is rare because it is hard to find things that he really enjoys. So for him to approve my affogato meant that it was good.
The next dish that arrived was his order of hot wings. I was a little amused at seeing the chicken wings doused in what looked like spicy mayonnaise, chopped chilli, and herbs, with a side of greens in balsamic dressing? Maybe they were trying to please the diet freaks but salad and hot wings don’t really pair well, at least not to me. They should have come on its own. Or with a dip on the side.
The last order was our waffles. We ordered a classic waffles with butter and maple syrup, and drizzled with chocolate sauce. Everything came as per described in the menu. My only bone of contention was the maple syrup. Why on earth would someone drizzle the syrup on to the plate with the waffles sitting on top? Shouldn’t the maple syrup be all over the waffles instead?
The texture of the waffles was good; soft and fluffy, with slightly crispy edges. They were warm and flavourful. Even though the waffles did fairly well, I was still grieving for what seemed like a lack of maple syrup. We could have asked for more, but for the price we paid, it didn’t seem worth it to be asking for more maple syrup. Maybe I should bring my own bottle next time.
It was a pity that our experience was such a bad one. It could have been a good place, really. We weren’t expecting it to be super marvelous but it was a bit of a let-down, especially in terms of the food and the service.
The presentation of each meal was fine. They were Instagrammable but the hype just died there. The only thing that was worth mentioning was the affogato. Even then, the little jug of espresso needed to be fixed. It wouldn’t pour out properly and kept dribbling down the spout onto the table instead of the ice cream. It was really annoying.
The straw that broke the camel’s back, though, was the service. Did I mention that there were no cheery greetings when we came in? No smiles when our orders were taken either, and no “Thanks for coming!” wishes when we left. That was some pretty bad customer service. And the waitress looked like she wanted to chew our heads off! 😠 Terrible. Maybe they all had a bad day, but that doesn’t mean you could take it out on your customers.