Skip (the) Tart and go Straight for (the) Short Cake

by Maia Harari
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tartI love breakfast.  Pancakes that taste like cookie dough at Hedley's, Huevos O'Groats, I'll even drive to Ventura for the chorizo skillet at Golden Egg or go to Barney Greengrass in New York for nova, onions and eggs.  So I was excited to try Tart, the cute cafe next to the Farmer's Daughter hotel on Fairfax.

It's adorable inside.  Quaint, cozy, the owner, who looks like Yosemite Sam, bouncing around in an apron, like someone's dream of what a breakfast place should be.  So I didn't mind that we got seated right next to the door on a particularly chilly Angeleno day.  And I didn't even mind that it took almost a half an hour to get our coffee.  It was Saturday, and they were busy.  But the coffee was burnt and watery.  Like it was scraped from the bottom of the dispenser. 

I returned it and ordered a cappuccino to compensate. It took twenty minutes to arrive AND it came with lipstick smeared all over the mug.  Not mine, by the way.  I sent it back, and suggested that since it had been forty five minutes and there was no sign of our food, maybe we should abandon ship...

My friends weren't having it.  They'd waited this long and we were starving.  So we waited.  And waited.  And waited.  A concerned bus boy finally came to check on us.  When our food finally did come, it was a disaster.  I honestly don't know where to start. 

 

tartfoodMy egg white scramble was charred, my friend's corn beef hash was dangerously undercooked, the biscuit -- at least they should make a good biscuit, it is Tart after all in The Farmers Daughter Motel -- was starchy and bland, and the Swiss cheese in my mom's omelette was unmelted and came with potatoes so square they could only have come from a frozen bag. 

To make matters even worse, the waffle we'd ordered for the table was raw inside. 

We flagged Yosemite Sam, the owner over.  While he waived our bill after some negotiating, he was arrogant and completely unapologetic, explaining that, no matter what we thought, they were busy for a reason.

I'd lost my appetite, but my mom insisted that we all still needed food.  So we walked across to the always reliable Farmer's Market and found ourselves at the counter at Short Cake...where Nancy Silverton saved the day...

 

Maia Harari is a writer and choreographer, born and raised in Los Angeles. You can follow her on twitter at www.twitter.com/maiacalypso.

Comments   

0 #2 Merrick Fisher 2013-03-06 12:20
What a disastrous dinning experience we suffered from that day!

Nothing went well that day @ Tart.

From the rude wait staff to the unappologetic owner.

An experience not ever to be repeated.

You've been warned One for the Table subscribers! Please heed. Tart is No Good!!
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0 #1 Alan Rader 2013-03-04 15:20
Yikes. Toots, for the next few months don't walk alone on Fairfax.
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