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#21 nagrom

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 01:14 PM

I went last night too. The view is pretty amazing although I want to burn down that billboard.
My take is that it's not ready. Wait a few weeks people. I think the potential is there, but, yes, the duck was way overcooked. My main concern for them is that they are going to get the crazies from downstairs at Chesterfields. There were already too many bridge and tunnel types when I went, not eastside-like at all which sucks for me. Had a guy ask if he could borrow our candle to light a cigarette. Figured he'd take it outside but actually lit it next to our table then ran outside blowing a puff of smoke into the restaurant. Maybe they need a bouncer.

I think next time I'll try more of the appetizers since they seem to me more adventurous. The tongue hot dog, by the way is awesome, with homemade tangy relish. My husband ate two. I've heard that the POS system is a nightmare for the servers and is contributing to the slowness. I'm not about to give up on the place though, Noble Rot is one of my favorite spots and I have faith that rocket just needs a bit of time to sort out the wrinkles. Would like a bit more adventurous wine list though. It's good, but with some of the wacky food ideas, I think they should take that to the wine list too. Give me some Txakolina and Blaufrankish or something!

#22 mczlaw

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 06:08 PM

I've heard that the POS system is a nightmare for the servers and is contributing to the slowness.


Everyone knows what POS stands for (besides "point of sale"). Sounds like no exception here.

--mcz

#23 ExtraMSG

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 06:45 PM

The view is pretty amazing although I want to burn down that billboard.


It was there first.

I think the potential is there, but, yes, the duck was way overcooked.


Hmm, I would have thought it would be just ours, but if they don't even know better and are screwing them up consistently...

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#24 dretceterini

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 07:41 PM

The view is pretty amazing although I want to burn down that billboard.


It was there first.

I think the potential is there, but, yes, the duck was way overcooked.


Hmm, I would have thought it would be just ours, but if they don't even know better and are screwing them up consistently...



You can find various styles of rubber duckies in almost any novelty store in town for about a buck. I guess the fig sauce is worth $21

#25 Amoureuse

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 09:19 PM

I think we should all relax and give Rocket 1 month to "work out the kinks". It seems that everyone is so quick to jump on/off the wagon. I can say, this place wont bomb out like Ten01. Any/most industry people will tell you, " wait a month until the dust settles, before you try out a new joint." Remember, it took Noble Rot a couple of months to get her "sea legs".

Ideally two weeks of "soft opening " would be nice. But time ( especially here ) was too long/ too short. Leather is good at what he does, he will make it.

#26 shuwval

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 11:04 PM

Is Rocket trying too hard to be clever? Sometimes what looks good on paper does not carry over to the plate.

#27 kitchenmilitia

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 11:51 PM

yeh.wow.havn't been there yet. it sounds like the space might be amazing but at this point the food might not be living up to the years long expectations.it is possible that it will be delicious after they cater to the needs of the public and WOW them with their"platinum leeds" building and talk of molecular gastronomy.the menu looks like a spin on americana favorites and probably should have brown betty's and tv dinners.

#28 ExtraMSG

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Posted 13 May 2007 - 11:51 PM

I think we should all relax and give Rocket 1 month to "work out the kinks".


I agree, Amoureuse. I'll be back.

I think it's appropriate to question the menu direction, dish conceptions, decor, etc. Anyone who doesn't expect execution problems and service problems early on is naive. But I think it's fair to expect the staff to be trying, especially the chef-owner.

Is Rocket trying too hard to be clever? Sometimes what looks good on paper does not carry over to the plate.


I really didn't think so. The mains and sides aren't "clever" at all, from what I saw. I just ate at Moto and Alinea, where cleverness is the norm and had some great food. The two dishes I had that would feel at home in those places, the lamb corndog and the rhubarb chips and lemon dip either worked well (the corndog) or weren't hurt by the cleverness (the rhubarb chips).

You can find various styles of rubber duckies in almost any novelty store in town for about a buck. I guess the fig sauce is worth $21


Yeah, but do you like any place with dishes over $12? You've been kind of one-note since you got here: everything is too expensive.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#29 ExtraMSG

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Posted 14 May 2007 - 02:28 PM

I split off the pricing discussion since it was more about K&Z's than Rocket and put it in Other. Actually, I'll put it in Industry.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#30 chefken

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Posted 14 May 2007 - 02:34 PM

thanks for telling me.
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#31 ExtraMSG

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Posted 14 May 2007 - 03:56 PM

I split out the discussion on Portland food value/pricing, leaving it in Portland Restaurants.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#32 mczlaw

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Posted 17 May 2007 - 07:55 AM

I know Rocket has scrapple on the menu, so in tribute to the dish, I thought I'd post the lyrics to one of my very favorite food songs, "Happy Scrapple Daddy" by Robin Remailly and the Holy Modal Rounders:**

I'm your happy scrapple daddy
from the Pennsylvania farm.
I'm your happy scrapple daddy
with all them piggish charms.
Raised up on the hill,
My taste is most refined,
I'm your happy scrapple daddy
bringing greasy good times.

[Chorus]
Pork liver, lambies' tongues
Vienna sausage, aw save me some.
Chitlins ah them chitlins,
calf brains and rare steaks,
linguisa and kielbasa
eat your sister by mistake.
Yummy, yummy, yummy,
Gooey, goo.
What that meat eatin'
gonna make you want to do?
I feel like a bomber with a big load of bombs.
I'm your happy scrapple daddy from the Pennsylvania farms.

I hope your like your pig's feet.
I really hope you do.
Cause I love to see your chin
just drippin' with goo.
I start with the feet.
I eat the whole hog and kneezies.
With my grinnin' greasy lips
I'm the wandering wailing weenie.

[Chorus]

I'm your happy scrapple daddy.
How do you know?
I can tell you like your pigs' feet
by the shape of your nose.
It's big and round and crispy
and the end comes to a point.
And every time I ask you something
all you say is "oink."

[Chorus]


**Music and lyrics are published in
Gastronomica, Vol I, No. 1 (Feb. 2001)
Courtesy (my pal) Joshua Raul Brody




#33 Tapatio

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Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:00 PM

Okay, so last night I finally hit Rocket with some friends. We were on our way to see Spoon at Doug Fir, and decided that was the perfect opportunity to have some drinks and a small meal before the show. They were not busy, and it seemed like the perfect opportunity to get some snacks, have a pre-show drink, and scope out Rocket for a future full dinner return.

I am here to tell you that there was very little right about our entire experience. Okay, maybe the view. I'm not certain I will make it back for the full dinner any time soon.

I have literally received better service at McMenamins many times over. Hell, I've had better experiences at Jack in the Box!

So, we arrived at 9:30, about an hour before we wanted to be over at Doug Fir. We all ordered very simply to save some time. We ordered Three salads, one burger, one chicken strips, some fries, and one cottage cheese tart w/tomato jam. We all ordered beer or a glass of wine as well.

The service, from the beginning was very tepid and zombie-like. Our server made no greeting beyond "What can I get you?". We had questions about the menu, but all he really gave us were one word answers, so we all just went for the quick and easy to understand items.

Our drinks took 5-10 minutes, not too bad. Our food, however, was a total disaster. First, we waited about 40 minutes before our first item arrived - the burger. There was a vague mention that other items were coming, so my friend politely waited to start his meal.

Well, 15 minutes later, nothing else had arrived, and we all started to wonder what the hell had happened to our server. Soon another server arrived with my fried chicken bits, followed eventually by the rest, except one salad (to go with the burger). No apologies, no acknowledgement of the situation, just a zombie-like food drop.

At this point a friend joined us for a drink. They helped us get another chair, and said someone would be right over to take her order. 15 minutes later someone finally walked by to help another table, and we grabbed that server to order the drink.

The food was fine, but barely.

My chicken bits had clearly been sitting in the kitchen, waiting for table delivery for a while. Their version of ranch dressing, that comes with the chicken, was a tahini-like paste with very little flavor that I could discern. For $10 I felt like I would have done better to have ordered the same item over at Doug Fir. The portion was medium to small, especially for the price, it was room temperature, and relatively flavor-free.

I didn't have a chance to talk to anyone else about their food, but clearly no one was wowed. We were all too focused on the fact that we still had not received one of the salads.

Eventually we gave up on the last salad, and grabbed a server to get our check. Of course, the missing salad was on the check, but at this point we knew better than to wait for a server to come to us. My friend took the check to bar to remedy the situation. The server returned to our table with the exact same check, salad still on the bill! Once again my friend had to march up to the bar to get it sorted out. They politely took care of it, but I tend to think that a new restaurant in that situation should be gushing with apology to make sure we come back.

I don't know what the hell is going on at Rocket, but it's not right at all. I love Noble Rot, and will continue to go there, but I'm not sure about this venture. It's been 3-4 weeks at this point they can't handle the simplest of service.

I hope for their sake that it gets better, but I'm not going to gamble on a $20+ dinner entree any time soon. There are far too many good restaurant options in this city to risk suffering through an experience like that more than once.

The Spoon show was great, though!

#34 ExtraMSG

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Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:06 PM

Thanks for the detailed report Tapatio. I'm hearing less harsh, but still not pleasant reports from people I talk to. I plan on getting back next week to try some of the dishes people are recommending and see if they can handle a duck order yet. My service was great, however. Whoever the waitress with the attractive smile and piercing eyes is, she's great. Authentically friendly and helpful.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#35 Tapatio

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Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:31 PM

Good luck! Our servers were not unpleasant, just very disconnected. I couldn't tell if they were working in sections or not, because we had 3-4 different people helping us at different points. I have another friend who had great service there as well, but he is friends with Leather, and was kind of given the royal treatment. I don't really trust his experience, and it makes me wonder who was being neglected while they doted on him.

Thanks for the detailed report Tapatio. I'm hearing less harsh, but still not pleasant reports from people I talk to. I plan on getting back next week to try some of the dishes people are recommending and see if they can handle a duck order yet. My service was great, however. Whoever the waitress with the attractive smile and piercing eyes is, she's great. Authentically friendly and helpful.



#36 ExtraMSG

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Posted 26 May 2007 - 01:38 PM

We had a team waiting on us as well, but there was clearly a waitress who was our primary server. Others occasionally filled water, brought something out, checked on us, or whatever. As I noted, Chef Storrs was definitely schmoozing some tables. I'm totally cool with that and it should have no effect on the service. But they were slammed and we had food come out excruciatingly slow and some dishes were poorly executed, which made the schmoozing frustrating.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#37 Cat Lancaster

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Posted 26 May 2007 - 04:38 PM

We had dinner here last night and over all Id say it was a B. The server seemed a little bored (actually the zombie description above is more on target) and kind of pissed that he got a six top that late. His answers to question were all mono-symbolic and not really informative at all. He also didnt put in one of our salad orders, so by the time it come out all the rest of us had finished eating.

We only had two things to start, the peanuts which were dry and lacked any flavor or salt and red greens with breadcrumbs that came with a goat cheese dressing, which Id order again. Nice sized salad and good flavor.

One person ordered the hamburger and said it was great but all of us agreed that the fries were a pass. The other miss was the grilled spencer that was described as bland by all who tasted it, myself included. Three of us ordered the Rocket steak on toast with rocket & fried onions that was really good. It was a fairly large portion for the price and I only ate the beef, greens and onions, leaving the bread and was full. The beef was also cooked exactly as I asked for it, which made me happy. For sides we ordered the sauted pea shoots, chili carrots and little potatoes with chives and butter all of which were good, although the pea shoots were the best.

No one ordered any desserts, so I have no info there. The wine list was decent, but Id prefer a couple more by the glass. And of course the view is gorgeous abet trying to ignore the billboards was pretty tough. Ill give them a little more time to work out the kinks, but Ill be back.

Cat
"travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness" ~ Mark Twain

"I'm not a picky eater, but I'm picky about what I eat." ~ Me

#38 Angelhair

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Posted 27 May 2007 - 07:58 AM

One person ordered the hamburger and said it was great but all of us agreed that the fries were a pass. Cat


Hey, I ordered the hamburger, but don't quote me on the review! By the time we got to Rocket (after way too many drinks at Clyde Commons), I barely remember the food. I was grateful for food of any kind to sop up all those tasty cocktails.

#39 Cat Lancaster

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Posted 27 May 2007 - 03:32 PM


One person ordered the hamburger and said it was great but all of us agreed that the fries were a pass. Cat


Hey, I ordered the hamburger, but don't quote me on the review! By the time we got to Rocket (after way too many drinks at Clyde Commons), I barely remember the food. I was grateful for food of any kind to sop up all those tasty cocktails.


Sorry Angelhair :wub: I was pretty tired when I wrote the review and didn't list anyone's names b/c I was worried I screw one of them up since I had only met three of the people that night. My bad.

Chalk it down to my being lazy. <_<

Cat
"travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness" ~ Mark Twain

"I'm not a picky eater, but I'm picky about what I eat." ~ Me

#40 Angelhair

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Posted 27 May 2007 - 04:43 PM

No, I mean I did have the burger, and I may have actually said that it was fantastic. But in the light of day, I have no recollection of it, other than it was indeed a burger that I ate!

Too many cocktails, and a lot of fun!