I’ve gotten food from BFS in the past. I’ve never been terribly impressed with the food. It tastes okay, but never anything amazing.
Upon navigating their website, I found a coupon for buy one, get one entrees for lunch or dinner – http://www.bfsrestaurant.com/restaurant/menu.html Max value of $6 at lunch and $10 at dinner. I wish they wouldn’t call them buy one get one coupons. It’s more; buy two get X dollars off, because dinner entrees are around $18 per plate. But hey, it’s something, so if you were planning on checking it out, why not print out a coupon?
Albany John and I were in the area at lunch earlier this week and he really wanted to try it out. Their website is right – when you walk in the two side dining areas are really gorgeous. There is a very homey, cozy air when you walk into BFS. Heck, it’s easy to miss from the road because it doesn’t look much different from the houses in the area.
We putzed around looking for menus. One was sticky and dirty, so I put it down and looked at the menu board (wow, I am very unobservant – I didn’t notice it at first). On first glance, I thought their prices were a little out of whack. Sandwiches are around $7, wraps $8.49. But then I thought of my beloved Via Fresca, and heck, their paninis can get near $9. Plus, it is 2008, not 1994.
Albany John asked what the BFS express sandwich was. They have a deal where you get a salad or soup and half sandwich for $8.50. The chef was not yet in, so the chef/cook/chick behind the counter didn’t know. She said she’d make whatever half sandwich he wanted from the menu board. Yay! He got the bluefish sandwich and salad.
I settled on a gyro wrap. I haven’t had a good gyro in so long. The sandwich/wrap said it came with a side salad of the chef’s choosing. I like A Taste Of Greece’s, but sometimes their gyros are a little skimpy on the fillings.
Ok. So. Yea. Gyros!
We waited for about 10-15 minutes, and I’m not sure I saw the chick behind the counter change her gloves. So I sat near the front cause you guys know I’m a germaphobe and I’m convinced everything will kill me. She seemed really stressed out and was kind of… huffy? I don’t know, but she was taking a lot of deep breaths.
So we notice our sandwiches are up and go over. My gyro looks gigantic and delicious. Albany John asked about his side salad. The chick behind the counter seemed a little overworked, but got the salad for him. I asked if the sandwich came with a side salad, mainly because the listing above the counter didn’t mention it, but it was in the menu, so… yea. Clarification was needed for my much confused head. She took a deep breath and then sighed while getting some macaroni shell salad out.
I have no clue what was going on in that restaurant, but it was a little freaky/funny. There were only 2 other people in the restaurant when we walked in. The chick behind the counter seemed really overwhelmed. They weren’t ‘Seriously, I hate you for asking me to make that’ sighs, but more ‘OMG. OVERLOAD’ sighs. At least that’s what I call them, since I can do them a lot myself. Everyone in general seemed really out of it and/or stressed. Maybe it’s because the chef wasn’t yet in?
Salad, salad, salad – so pretty!
So yea. We got our food and left. Since it’s been so nice out, we settled up on a park bench to enjoy the sunlight and walk around a bit.
Gyro – omg, great. It’s huge, the yogurt sauce is amazing. $8.50 is worth it. The meat is wonderfully seasoned. The entire thing is, really. There’s a lot of nutmeg and other warm spices that will happily dance all the way down your tongue to your belly.
The pasta salad – eh, tasted like plastic with mayo on it. I passed.
Evidently there was some kind of miscommunication, because although Albany John said BFS Express got a full sandwich, not half, in addition to his side salad.
Score, you’d think. Full sandwich. Normally, yea. But this was uncooked/cold in the center and it was supposed to be a hot sandwich. It seems like they cooked it part way ahead of time to re-heat/cook through when someone wants it. Great way to do food ahead of time – when it’s cooked all the way through. It looked really tasty, though.
Albany John went later to return the sandwich since he’d be out all day and didn’t want a half-cooked fish sandwich stinking up his car. He just split half of my giant gyro.
The chef/owner was there when he went and super nice: gave him a refund and gave him a new sandwich. He explained that sometimes it happens when the oven’s not hot enough… either way – I think it was very nice of him to take an extra step in apologizing and then offering a new sandwich. We need more customer service like that in the area.
I am so going to go back for another gyro in the area. First of all, the gyro was great. But what really motivates me is supporting someone who cares about their food and business.
Over the weekend Albany John and I visited his parents in Western Massachussets. His mom wanted to try out the Big Mamou‘s newest location in Williamsburg, MA. We had all been to the Springfield location before and loved it. Some great food, BOYB (bring your own beer/booze), and charmingly slow service that took his dad back to living in the Caribbean.
I was excited to go back – the food was SO good. This new location is a lot hipper and brighter than the Springfield, MA location. It looks like they’re going for a completely different, artsy, NoLa vibe here. It was ok, but I kind of wanted a barebones restaurant that I remembered.
Anywho, not all change is bad change. The service was excellent and quick! Albany John’s dad could not wrap his head around it and was complimenting our waitress left and right on her speed.
Dad: “Oh my god! Already? This is great!”
Later: “Holy cow, I was not expecting these out already – have you BEEN to the Springfield location?”
…Et cetera for the rest of dinner.
Albany John and his dad split an order of the Jerk Thunder Thighs. For about $7, I was expecting a pretty generous platter of thighs. This was a nice presentation, but for $7 and about 1 thigh of meat… I don’t know. The strips of thigh meat were tender and insanely pleasantly spiced. Albany John and his dad looked at me like I was crazy when I started gulping water. I can’t help it! Sadly, I am still a spice wuss.
For dinner, I got the Sausage-n-Chicken Ya Ya. Ya Ya! Say it with me – Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya Ya! It was so fun sounding, I had to get it. It’s an andouille sausage wrapped in a chicken breast.
I liked it, but I didn’t really taste the chicken – the sausage was over powering in comparison, but the sausage casing did have great snap. Albany John’s dad thought it tasted like a kielbasa.
Albany John ordered the chicken etoufee, which came with fried crawfish on top. It was okay, but they didn’t list on the menu that it also came with green bell peppers in it.
So Albany John’s dad swapped with him (because he is awesome), and Albany John got his dad’s meal, which was a red snapper fillet in béchamel/remoulade sauce (I can’t remember which one. It was probably the remoulade, though). Holy, holy, holy, cheese wiz. This was the best plate of seafood I have ever eaten anywhere, ever. No joke – the snapper was perfectly cooked and moist. The remoulade had a wonderful white wine bite to it. I normally don’t like wine in sauces/soups because they can add acidity I don’t like to stand out over everything else, but this went so well. There were also some crawfish in there. God, it was an orgy of seafood, cream and butter.
Albany John’s mom got the blackened catfish. Yum, yum, yum. Very peppery.
One thing we all really loved were those little squares of cornbread on our plates. They were soft and airy, almost crumbly like a cake. The cornbread was just sweet enough – it was perfect.
Oh yea, and then we went to Trader Joe’s in Hadley, MA. I love that store. They have so many great products. I will have to post on what I bought there.