Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Bar Louie-Closed

Bar Louie
321 W Katella Ave

Bar Louie is really popular in Chicago but this chain that has made it's way to Anaheim and The Garden Walk. Since the city of Anaslime, got rid of all those fleabag motels on Katella and Harbor, they want more retail space. So Garden Walk is built. They have a McCormick's and Schmidt, a bowling alley, 23 HR fitness, Bubba Gump's and other chain restaurants.

Bar Louie has a great happy hour special from 4-7pm everyday, $5 martinis, $3 pints and buy one appetizer and get the other one free. On Tuesdays it's even better that specials last for the entire night!!!

So I got the tempura shrimp, $9.99, and my free appetizer was the small order of wings, that are normally, $7.99.

The wings are OK. They were either baked or not fried long enough because they weren't crispy at all. They were fairly meaty but the sauce was so mild. I want hot wings. Not mild wings. Oh well.

The shrimp were crispy and tender. I did like the shrimp but the sauces they had sucked. A buffalo sauce that was actually hotter than the wings sauce, a sweet and sour, a spicy-sweet. All were terrible. I should have asked for just plain cocktail sauce. I thought for the price, $9.99 the portions were a big small. Of course if I got two shrimp orders for the price of one it would be a steal. So I will only come when they have these buy one, get one free specials.

Service was poor. Before going to Bar Louie I did read that service is poor. Well I experienced it. I think it has more to do with staffing than the servers not being well trained or not caring about their job. There was one bartender and two servers. That's all. I would say there were about 40 people and these three servers have to cover everybody? They either need to, schedule more servers or hire more servers. I was waiting forever to get drink orders and refills on water. The food also took longer than it should. I assume the kitchen staff was also short handed.

Parking is actually pretty good in their lot. 2 hours free parking. 3 total hours free parking with validation from any business in The Garden Walk. 4 hours free with validation from the movies. 5 hours free, with validation from the bowling alley.

I thought the food overall was good. I saw sliders that were huge and that's the next thing I'm going to get. My advise is to sit and order at the bar. At least the bartender will see you. So I will go back to Bar Louie again.

Update Dec 9th

I went back to Bar Louie and ordered the crab cake and cheeseburger sliders, $9.99 but with happy hour prices, buy one, get one free.

The cheeseburger sliders were OK. They come with pickles and fried onions but no ketchup or mustard. Weird. So these were a bit dry unless you add ketchup. The meat itself was a bit tough and was pretty bland.

I did like the crabcake sliders. The crabcakes were full of crab, not fillers and fried to a crisp brown. The crab was fresh and flavorful. I am tempted to get a entree portion of crab cakes.

I found the key to getting good service at Bar Louie, sit at the bar. The bartender was nice and helpful. He greeted me as I walked towards the bar and was very friendly. I was only lacking for a refill on lemonade but otherwise he was great.

While the sliders were huge, I think I will only go to Bar Louie during happy hour. The cheeseburger sliders would not be worth the $8.99 price.