Some things are inevitable before they even begin, but it appears that Suite 100 has finally given up. On Cinco De Mayo, and with the Sun Trust Jazz Festival in full bloom, The Suite was closed tight. Although there are chairs stacked inside, it seems unlikely that they'd be closed if they were still open. Their phone number has some strange message. So I think they're done.
Sometimes you know things in advance, and I had a feeling about Suite 100. There's been something disorganized about the place since before they opened. I've thought about going there many times, but could never quite pull the trigger on it. There's nothing exciting about their regular menu, and for some reason they seem to have no interest in posting their brunch menu on their website or facebook page. I'd been there once for a drink; it's really nice inside, with a glass bar and leather booths.
Since today was Jazz Brunch day (the first Sunday of every month), I knew there would be a lot of people on the riverwalk; and there would be live music. So I decide to check out their brunch.
There was a table available near the music and the weather was perfect, so I asked the hostess to seat me there. I was given a regular menu and a brunch menu; brunch is why I came here, so I went over it carefully. They have all of the expected breakfast items: 2 eggs with your choice of meat, omelets, eggs benedict and a number of creative omelets. Sunday is my cheat day so no beans or spinach for me today; I went for the steak and eggs, which the menu stated was sirloin. I found it a bit strange; since they don't have sirloin anywhere else on their menu. Where they buying sirloin steaks just for brunch?
After a few minutes my server came by, and I ordered coffee. I hadn't yet decided what I wanted. She asked if I wanted it black or with cream; I guess they don't bring milk unless you ask for it. I asked for cream. I pondered the menu a bit longer and she came back with coffee and cream and I ordered my food. I had to call her back as she leaped away to ask about toast; only white or wheat is available.
The problem was that I didn't have a spoon. I didn't have any silverware at all, so I couldn't stir with my knife or fork either. I asked another server who was walking by if I could get a spoon; he said "sure" but he had no interest in actually doing it. I saw him walking around and he never made any effort to get me a spoon.
Luckily, my server forgot how I wanted my steak so she came back to ask at which point I asked her for a spoon. She was gone a while so I wasn't quite sure what was up. She came back a little while later and put a soup spoon on the table. I had to keep from snickering quite frankly.
At least I could properly sugar my coffee, so no harm done. I was taking in the sun, the music and reading news on my iPhone, so it wasn't so bad. It was about at this time that I started to notice how uncomfortable the chairs where. They had this round bowl with a rim that cut into my legs; clearly a purchase made for appearance only with no concern for comfort.
Finally my food arrived. While I despise eggs that take the shape of a small frying pan, it all looked pretty good.
I was starving and ready to dig in, but I didn't have any silverware. So I sat there and waited. My server came by and asked how I liked it; looking right down at the table while she said it. I mentioned that I didn't have a fork or a knife, which apparently gave her the idea to get me a rollup. She dropped the rollup on the table and slid away.
Of course the rollup included a fork and a butter knife, which wasn't going to help me to cut the steak. I then noticed that the small, single slice of toast was unbuttered. She came by again and I asked for butter and a steak knife; she said that she "thought" that they had steak knives and would find out. Was this her first day or something? Was I the first person to ever order Steak and Eggs here? Of course they had steak knives and once I got it I dug into the food.
Eggs are eggs and they were more over-medium than over-easy but they were fine. The Suite Potato Hash (get it?) was excellent, with dice sweet potatoes, regular potatos, onions peppers and some other veggies, and the steak was properly prepared and was very good. I'm not sure how the grapes fit in; I had no interest in fruit.
My server came by again and asked how everything was; apparently not noticing that my coffee cup was empty. I had put the spoon on top in the hope that someone would notice; they have pretty small coffee cups here so it's not long before they're empty.
As expected, paying the check was a lengthy process, as the amount of time my card was on the table was just way too long.
While I give my server credit for stopping by the table quite often, she seemed to have no sense of what was required at any given time. A good server is pouring you more coffee just as you're finishing your last one; an incompetent server doesn't even notice when the cup is empty; or when you have food but no silverware.
The real story here is that they just didn't seem to have any idea of how to create a positive experience. The comedy of errors wasn't just a series of coincidences; when you couple the inability to provide acceptable service with the disorganization of their web site and having no understanding how to market the restaurant; you just can't come up with any explanation other than this place is just run by amateurs from head to toe.