Hi all FoodMeister2000 here posting to CHOWDAWG TORONTO GROUP as part of my public service for all my fellow chow dawgs and foodies out there.
Those of you who know me are saying to yourselves, “FoodMeister2000, why are you reviewing a dumpy little breakfast place in Little Portugal?”
Well, first off, the place is actually in Little Italy, naysayers to the contrary. Second of all…well, just read the rest of the review, FoodMeister Fans.
Ms. Meister and I were craving some brunch last Sunday, and we just happened to be in the area and saw the colorful sign for Hop the Pop. We looked at each other and said “Why not?”
Inside, the place was simply set with tables with checked plastic tablecloths and dark wooden captain chairs with armrests. However, the smell going out to the street was appealing, and the older woman who greeted us was very friendly.
Coffee appeared almost immediately, and the older woman made sure our mugs never went dry. Unfortunately, that was the best of our experience that afternoon.
After the older woman vanished, we were served by a shorter woman who squeaked. Like Betty Boop. Was she attentive? Yes, actually, but why do restaurants in a highly competitive environment like this city continue to hire staff like this? Ms. Meister also commented as I was watching Squeaky walk away, “She’s got quite the voice, eh?”
Breakfast included something called, and I am not kidding here, “The Treehugger” which was listed as being fruit and nuts served over gravel in an edible spruce bowl. Well, Ms. Meister and I had to see this, so we ordered it along with our more normal breakfast choices.
The Treehugger came out, as advertised, carried by a man in chef’s whites and one of those tall chef hats. “Hi, I’m Albert,” he said to my wife, putting it down on the table, “are you a professional chef?”
Well, Albert was looking at her, and I mean LOOKING, so I cleared my throat. He then turned and smiled at me. “Oh, of course, you’re the professional chef.”
FoodMeister Fans, you know I can make a mean sous-vide pork belly at home, but I’m really just a dedicated hobbyist. So I said back to Albert, “No, neither of us is a professional chef.”
“Really?” he said. “That’s surprising, every time this gets ordered, it’s always by a professional chef. Susur, Guy, Ken…you know. They love the playfulness and creativity it demonstrates. Anyhow,” and he looks back at my wife again, “that ‘edible’ spruce bowl? Only if you’re a termite! Remember, playful!” And he winks at her, then remembers I’m sitting there, and waves at both of us, then walks off.
Well! I was so mad, I could only finish half my plate. Which was good for what it was. Ms. Meister sensed I was getting PO’ed and suggested we leave. To show no hard feelings to Squeaky, I tipped the full 15%, although I felt like leaving a penny.
On the way out, the host looked at me, said “Come back soon,” and WINKED at me, I swear.
I don’t know what they are putting in the food there, but maybe if you are tired of Viagra, you should eat at Hop the Pop. Otherwise, avoid the place like the plague.
And we kept the spruce bowl as compensation for being treated the way we were.