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Restaurants & Bars 1

Depot in Torrance

Panoz | Apr 29, 200508:48 PM

I'm posting this on the top, instead of replying to some of the older posts regarding Depot, since they are getting a bit aged.

I just went to Depot for lunch today. It was a coworker's birthday, and we wanted to take her somewhere nice. I've gone maybe 5-6 times in the last five years, and it's always been The Depot, who is owner operated by Chef Schafer. Beyond that, I don't know.

Usually the food has been generous, good and very creative with lots of Asian influences. They always give out baskets of flatbreads and zucchini(?) bread with slabs of butter and scoops of pesto butter. This time we didn't have as good of an experience. There's usually a selection of 3-5 daily specials handwritten on the bottom each day.

Today I had the tri-tip with mushrooms and potatoes which was one of the specials. Both the meat and the potatoes were on the cool side. The meat was tough and stringy. The butter knife did not do much to it but make it look like a meaty pulp. It did have a bit of chew on it. I've had tri tip before, and I've had it at Depot before. It's never been this chewey.

The server, while charming, did pull some dirty tricks. When asked for drinks, some people asked for water. She would reply, "sparkling or still"? Of course, all you seasoned visitors of restaurants, know you have the option of asking for "tap". But not the group I went with (some of them never seen two fork in one setting). Everyone ended up getting bottled water and of course had to pay for it. Okay, not that serious of a trick...

When we ordered our dishes, she asked, "soup or salad?", in the fashion that it was included. Not, "would you like to include a soup or salad?", as if it was additional. I've been there before, and knew entrees did not come with salads or soups. But many of the group had not. Also, it was a coworker's birthday, so I didn't want to question the server. When someone would ask for the salad, the server would reply "field greens or caesar" which further made it sound like it was included with the entree, since there are actually five appetizer salads on the menu. When the bill came, of course the salads were on the bill.

Before you chowhounds ask why didn't we complain, or you should have known, again, it was someone's birthday, no one in my party was mad, I'm just telling you what happened.

To be fair, we were a party of 13 people, but we had reservations, and accepted their only time slot of being the last of the day for lunch at 1:30. The rest of the guests were otherwise finishing up, so they were obviously not 'slammed'.

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