Thursday, July 2, 2009

Fill Up Somewhere Else

I finally had the chance to check out Ford's Filling Station last week, the gastro pub run by Ben Ford (Harrison Ford's son). I had heard great things about this place and given the location in the young & hip Culver City, I figured it wouldn't disappoint. What I found was gourmet pub food for the price of a meal at any of the top LA restaurants. It is not that I had a terrible meal, but rather that I got terribly ripped off. I kid you not, I've had a meal at Patina for less than this.

I started off the meal with an order of the rabbit pate. It's served with some grilled shallots, whole grain mustard and cornichons - all of which can be put together on top of some toasted bread. It's a nice starter, but it comes at a price (believe it was around $14-$16). I followed this up with some fried clams, nice & crispy served with lemon and a tartar sauce. It is a perfect example of what one would expect at a gastro pub and was actually quite good. Again though, had an issue with the price which I figured should have been half the cost (generally a small fried clam or calamari dish at a gastro pub will run $6-$10).

As I looked at the entree menu, I was actually shocked. Most of the dishes were priced in the $25-$30 range including dishes such as black cod with artichoke, fish & chips, and kobe beef cheeks served with cracked wheat risotto. I opted for the pub burger, the cheapest by far on the menu ($16) in an effort to save a few bucks. When I ordered, I was asked if I wanted "the works," assuming that it would come with all the condiments. It ended up being a little dry and needed all add-on's to work. While I shouldn't compare the burger to Father's Office (my favorite gourmet burger), it was hard not to. It's not in the same ballpark, rather average, and much more expensive. I did get the chance to try the kobe cheeks which were actually quite tasty but a touch rich. Additionally, the dish didn't seem to fit the scene of a trendy pub environment.

When the bill came, I found that I was charged $22 for the burger ($16 + $6 for "the works"), yet there was no mention of the added cost on the menu, nor did the waitress highlight the supplement. It's not that I have an issue paying that much for a burger (have spent more before), but I want to have a descent sense of the bill before it comes. It is this reason that prices are put on the menu in the first place. After complaining a bit to the waitress with no luck (figures given the service was poor from the start), I emailed the management directly to express my response.

Overall, I would sum up the restaurant as a great disappointment. If I want gourmet pub food, I would head over to Father's Office right down the street. If I want a fine dining meal, I will head over to a place such as Hatfield's (previous write-up) or any of the other great options in LA.

So, count me out on Ford's...I'll fill up somewhere else.

Rating: 85

Ford's Filling Station
9531 Culver Blvd.
Culver City 90232

No comments:

Post a Comment