I'd like to start off by saying that keeping a customer waiting 50 MINUTES for a sandwich and poutine during lunch hour is NEVER acceptable. (at least give your waiting, starving customers a snack while they're waiting)!
My husband is a big fan of Montreal Smoked Meat (as in, his eaten it in Canada), so I was excited to take him to the Augie's Montreal Smoked Meat pop up at Beauty's Bagels today. I worked from home for the day and we drove from El Cerrito over to Temescal to grab a quick lunch.
First thing everyone should know - if you are a vegetarian, your only option is...pickles. So you've been warned. The pop up wasn't very busy (only about 10 customers), so we put in our order for 1 smoked meat sandwich and an order of poutine. And then the waiting began. After 30 minutes (and seeing orders come out about once every 10 minutes), I started to get pretty annoyed - I was starving at this point. When I went to check on the order, I was told by the nice ladies taking orders that they were overwhelmed on their first day by the success of the pop up (again, there were literally 10 customers in this place, so I guess they're pretty easily overwhelmed). I was told out order was up next (ie, half an hour after we placed the order, they hadn't even STARTED on it yet).
And this is the point that really really bugged me - if you know that your orders aren't coming out in a timely manner (like the customer will be waiting a minimum of 30 minutes), then you should warn people ordering, so you can't hold them hostage waiting for food, and they have the option of turning around and eating elsewhere.
As we sat there and continued waiting, I looked around and realized that most of the customers sitting there didn't have food, and not many of them looked pleased about that. After another 10 minutes, I just couldn't take it anymore...I was STARVING...so I walked down half a block and ended up ordering a sandwich from a corner store (which was delicious by the way - they used some type of addictive spicy sauce). I also moved my car, since we didn't expect to be parked for so long...and after that point, our food was finally ready. We ended up getting packed up to go since we both had to get back to work
And after our wait - here's a photo of our food below. When my husband opened the box his response was "We waited 50 minutes for this?" Seriously, I'm not gonna bother reviewing the food, except to say, my $6 turkey sandwich from the corner store that took 3 minutes to make was infinitely better than what we got from Augie's Smoked Meat.
So no, we won't be back, and if you do decide to try it, don't get your hopes up too high... just another overhyped Bay Area pop up.