Many restaurants have come and gone in Glen Waverley’s Kingsway strip since the arrival of the Village Cinema complex reinvigorated the area in the late 90’s. Mocha Jo’s has been a staple of the area since 2000 with its prime corner location guaranteeing a steady flow of customers from breakfast through until dinner.
J and I decided to pop in one recent Sunday and see what was on offer. What follows is one of the more bizarre dining experiences I have experienced. Waiter 1 seated us right in the doorway so J asked if it was possible to have a table further inside. We were taken to a corner booth but told it was booked at 2.00 p.m. so we’d have to be out by then. That was no problem – it was 12.25 so we were happy to comply.
Once seated, Waiter 2 approached and enquired if we were having breakfast or lunch. I asked if we could look at both menus. “Well we’re only serving breakfast for another 5 minutes as it finishes at 12.30”. “Well in that case we’ll order lunch” I replied. “Well I’ll just let you know that there’s a 20-25 minute break between when we stop serving breakfast and start serving lunch so the kitchen can prepare”. Ok then.
Ten minutes later, Waiter 1 approached and we thought he was going to take our order...wrong! “I’m sorry girls but I’m going to have to move you to another table...this table is booked at 2.00 and you’re not going to be done in time”. Well it would help if someone would take our order I thought, but we nodded politely. We assumed he would move us when another table became available...he never came near us again – what the?
Waiter 2 then arrived with our drinks and quickly exited. Perhaps the break between breakfast and lunch means they don’t take any orders during this time, we thought? He eventually arrived back to take our order at 12.50, 25 minutes after we were seated. Well at least ours should be one of the first orders to arrive...right? Wrong! It appeared that while we had been ignored, the other waiters had all been taking lunch orders from other tables. For the next 20 minutes we watched as a procession of lunch orders went out to tables that had been seated after us. Not happy, Jan! Finally our meals arrived at 1.10, 45 minutes after we had been seated.
Now, even if the kitchen does have a break between breakfast and lunch, if the waiter had taken our order at the start we could have had our meal 20 minutes earlier...and they could have had their table back. Dessert looked very tempting but with the clock ticking closer to 2.00, we decided not to bother.
J thought the calamari was nice and tender and the mustard mayonnaise full of flavour. A very enjoyable meal.
The erratic service was a big turn off. Most establishments manage the transition from breakfast to lunch service smoothly and with Mocha Jo’s serving breakfast seven days a week for over ten years, you’d think they’d have it down pat by now.
WILL WE RETURN?