A colleague made the booking, we all agreed the time off with our manager, and at the allotted hour of 9.15, about 14 of us went over there looking forward to good grub and good gossip.
We got the latter, at least. In fact, we gossiped for nearly an hour, because that's how long it took for the food to come out. I know that cooking for large numbers is tricky, but the menu only had three breakfast items on it, and one of those was a basket of pastries. Hardly rocket science.
When food did eventually start arriving, it was stone cold. I'd ordered scrambled eggs and smoked salmon, and the eggs were not even luke-warm. it wasn't even a case of them holding some meals back so they got cold while others were being cooked; every plate of eggs that came out of there was the same- congealed to the plate and heinously overcooked. I'm ashamed to say we all ate them anyway, as by then we were bloody starving.
Those who'd ordered the croissants didn't fare any better- they were all stale and, worse, burned to black on the undersides. When my colleagues complained and asked for replacements, they were told that they didn't have any more, so we would have to eat those or go without.
Coffee came out cold, (cold) toast for the eggs came out twenty minutes after the eggs had been eaten, butter for the toast came out ten minutes after that, rock hard and a pat about the size of a matchbox between 15 of us. We complained about that too, and they brought out more butter.... as we were paying the bill.
Worst bit though was that the girl who was leaving had ordered a croque monsieur (cheese and ham toastie). This appeared a full hour and a half after she'd ordered it. On what planet does it take 90 minutes to make grilled cheese?
All in all, it was one of the worst meals we have ever had the misfortune to put in our mouths. Being stroppy social workers, my colleagues were not afraid to tell the manager so, and he grudgingly comped the burnt croissants and one of the cold coffees. No apology was forthcoming.
Needless to say, we won't be going back, and I'd urge any Birmingham (UK) residents not to touch 'La Bastille' in Corporation Street with a bargepole.
Tealdeer: We book breakfast at a French restaurant. Food is cold, burnt, stale or all of the above, service is non-existent, manager is unhelpful, guests are not returning.