Taste Test: More Cafe

25 Sep 2014
POSTED BY Y Magazine

While the food was ok, Adam Hurrell finds that it’s the customer service that lets down the new More Café



My companion and I visited More Café on a Saturday afternoon. It was about two thirds full, giving the place a jovial ambience and welcoming atmosphere. Families and groups of friends gathered at the well-spaced tables, generating plenty of energy.

As you enter, a large oval table holding menus, cutlery and various miscellaneous paraphernalia is the first thing to greet you. This table was quite clever in that it was held in place by large steel cables suspended from the ceiling. Although a nifty idea, it does distract the eye and you are somewhat taken aback when you come face-to-face with the metal cable in the air, especially when you nearly walk into it as I did. The rest of the décor was modern and quite snazzy, with a purple ceiling and a smart, dark wood used for the floor and other fixtures. I liked the feature wall with lots of framed black-and-white photographs. They reminded me of an Italian restaurant I once visited in London’s West End, where the walls were full of autographed photographs of all the famous people who had dined there. It’s a fun feature to have and often gives a place a sense of longevity, even when it’s comparatively new.

My companion and I were invited in and allowed to sit wherever we liked, choosing a table towards the middle of the room. The menus were brought over on a clipboard, which is fine if you have two pages of content, but the More menu was closer to 10 and constantly folding the pages over and then flicking back through quickly became tedious.

The choice was vast and I opted for the More burger, while my companion chose the spinach and roasted pumpkin with feta cheese salad. We both ordered a side of fries after it was explained that neither dish came with them. I had a coke and she drank a lemon and mint juice. This was to be the only proper verbal communication we had from our waitress for the duration of our visit.

Our food duly arrived roughly 20 minutes later. The salad looked good and was apparently tasty, despite the feta being chopped in large chunks. My burger looked impressive as it arrived on something that resembled a multi-tiered cake stand, with each part of the burger served on an individual tier. “What a fun way to present a meal,” I thought. However, there was no additional plate upon which one could assemble this meal.

Luckily, the bowls of fries came on a plate so I used that. The tiers were rather precarious looking, instilling a prevailing fear that removing any food would send the lot crashing to the floor. At the base were various condiments, some of which were easily identifiable, while others remained a mystery even after tasting. An explanation from the waitress would’ve been useful. The burger was a touch dry, but with plenty of mayo and salad this was something that could be forgiven.

But it was the service that was the letdown. The waitress walked up to the table, as soon as my companion had put down her knife and fork, walking off with her plate without saying a word, clearing the cutlery despite the fact the side of fries were not yet finished. I hadn’t finished yet either and we were both surprised.

Post-main courses, I had an Earl Grey tea, my companion had coffee and we shared a strawberry cheesecake. The drinks arrived, although with no sugar for the coffee. Eventually, I got up and fetched it from another table myself. At no point did anyone say, “How was your meal? Can we get you anything else? Are you finished?” The pudding did not arrive until many questions as to its location had been asked of our waitress. When the cheesecake did turn up, it lacked flavour. By this point, we had run out of patience and just wanted to leave. The bill was requested and subesquently paid, although the waitress had vanished again so I used the card-reader myself, printed my receipt and left without leaving a tip.

More Café has the potential to be very good, although it was fundamentally let down by its front-of-house staff on the occasion of our visit. Hopefully, it is simply a case of the usual “teething problems” that come with a new opening.

Verdict

4 / 10 Service
6.5 / 10 Food
7 / 10 Ambience

Nice enough food, shame about the service

Info Box

More Café The Walk, The Wave, Muscat   

Tel. +968 2454 7446
Opening Times: Sunday – Saturday 8am-11pm
Lunch for two including drinks: RO27

Y Magazine reviews anonymously and pays for its meals


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