Belgravia is not an area I’m entirely familiar with in London, and whilst wandering down on a sunny lunch, came across Baker & Spice an intriguing quick and simple menu serving bright salads with the choice of a comforting main.
Glancing at the take-away menu, I found it unusual for a lunch eaterie to charge per 100g. This was my first issue with Baker & Spice as the portion sizes are determined by the server. I was informed later that you can request how many grams per portion you would like, but to me that just meant that you may get more salad than anything else as I can’t imagine anyone asking if they can have 100g more salmon.
Upon queuing, I was asked by the server if we would like to take away or eat in. Since we didn’t have anywhere else to go, we decided to dine-in.
After being seated, it wasn’t long before we noticed how hectic, messy and generally dysfunctional the whole eaterie was. Servers were running up and down the stairs with plates of food, not knowing whose food they were carrying. Orders were being missed and since there was no ticketing system, the servers were left guessing.
Once plates started arriving in front of us, not once did the correct order arrive. My colleague was hungry and instead of the waitress being apologetic and kindly offering to take the plate of food away, she stood awkwardly until he felt the need to accept what was in front of him.
After another 15 minutes watching the hectic service, another plate of food arrived and this time it was for me. Although the chicken pie was right, the salad was not and instead of accepting what was thrust in front of me, I requested for the salad to be changed to what I originally ordered. After waiting another 10 minutes the dish arrived but again, not to what I had ordered.
After the fiasco, I dismissed the waitress (whom was non-apologetic) and delved-in, frustrated that a simple task was deemed impossible to some. I eventually ended up with a chicken pie with sweet potato salad instead of beetroot and feta salad. Was the meal worth the wait? Not in the slightest. The chicken pie and salad were both bland and lacked seasoning and the chicken was dry and luke warm.
Unbeknown to us, the worst was yet to come; we were charged restaurant prices for our meal for dining in, £27 in total for two (thankfully with no service charge). I had a few words with the manager of the eaterie and complained about the service and mix up of order but most worryingly the prices they were charging for what is essentially, reheated food. I also further questioned the manager on what the difference was between the take away menu and the restaurant menu and found that there was no difference and “restaurants can charge what they like”. I’m not one to complain about the difference in cost between take-away and dining-in, however, no warning was issued to either of us whilst we were stood in the take away queue. A polite notification would have ensured that we would have avoided the entire Baker & Spice catastrophe. To make matters worse, our complaints were greeted by an arrogant, obnoxious, unapologetic, patronising manager.
Avoid Baker & Spice at all costs unless you want overpriced, reheated, bland food all served by rude, patronising staff whom will most definitely not serve you the food you ordered.
– Baker & Spice, Belgravia