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“Ridiculous wait time”
Review of Sweet Basil's Cafe

Sweet Basil's Cafe
Ranked #13 of 52 Restaurants in Cannon Beach
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$7 - US$22
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, After-hours, Lunch
Description: Offering a healthy choice at the coast. Many vegetarian and Gluten free options. House smoked pork and meat options also available. At dinner Cajun/Creole dishes are featured plus local Northwest ingredients. Live music nightly in the Wine Bar.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

On an early Saturday evening less than a month ago, my husband and decided to go there for a light dinner. We were seated right away, although outside. We ordered a bowl of "chowda" and a chicken salad. An hour and forty five minutes later we got our meal. We noticed several other tables of 2 or 3 people waiting a similar amount of time. The food was tasty, but not worth the nearly 2 hours wait time. The server avoided eye contact with us until more than an hour after ordering, I asked her when we would get out meal. I don't know what goes on in that place, but unless you are ok with waiting nearly two hours, go elsewhere. We will, after that experience. One benefit that I would like to share is that if you pay cash, you get a discount. That was nice.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank whitcomb83
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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6 - 10 of 524 reviews

Reviewed 13 May 2018

After hearing some good reviews, decided to give it a try. Long and short is simply this is just another north coast restaurant trying to be trendy.

As several have noted, service is slow and as I experienced, practically non-existent. After being served we did not see a server (at our table) until I started looking around for the bill. Getting a second drink became an exercise in frustration.

I am always leary of establishments that put up caveats for slow service, great food and etc., as that is usually just an excuse for "we don't have a clue what we're doing" and we're doing preemptive damage control. You will see these caveats on the website, several time on the menu and from your server (possibly). We were given several reasons why our food was going to be late. However no reasons why we didn't see a server after delivering the food or no reasons why it was so difficult to get another drink.

The food was good, a bit on the high side (pricey) for what was presented, and nothing special.

Live music? The best that can be said is Meh!

So the quest goes on for great food on the north coast, preferably accompanied by some adequate or better service.

I will give this place another try after the tourists and hipsters return to wherever and I'll give it another review at that time.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Ronzo4600
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mrsilverfox, Owner at Sweet Basil's Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 15 May 2018

I read every review mostly positive and then mot so positive. I'm kinda confused by your recent review or maybe I'm just misunderstanding some comments.I'll try to respond to your comments as best I can.

1. "another North Coast restaurant trying to be trendy" Well this is the same decor, entertainment and basic menu that I created 12 years ago. Actually I consider us behind the times compared to Portland restaurants. I've tried specials that would be more appropriate to the big city market but most guests still went for my traditional choices. As for decor we've been called everything from quaint, funky, down right terrible and so on. Hell. all I did was what I thought looked and felt good.

2.As for service. The caveats about the time it takes to prepare every dish from scratch are on the menu because even though guests are at the beach and should be chilling out many are still on rush hour time. Knowing that I thought it is an honest statement to allow guests to make a decision to have some patience or maybe visit us at another time when their not in a rush.I have that on the menu and instruct our servers to give a heads up to guests when we are crushed with orders. We have 4 burners to work on, two of us cooking and yes we get overwhelmed at times. I've only owned and cooked in my restaurants for 30 years so there is still a chance that "we don't have a clue what we're doing", but I'm working on it.

3. Im glad the food was "good", ninety three percent of guests think it's great or better but it's all ones taste and i understand that. However after winning numerous regional awards for my Cajun selections , winner of the 2016 and 2017 Iron Chef Goes Coastal, top restaurant awards from my previous place Lil Bayou is Seaside and coming from 4 star ratings from the NY Times in my New York endeavors, "Good" is kinda disappointing.

4. "Pricey" Sorry but my prices are by and large equal to or below prices from similar restaurants. Now if you want to compare it to a few of the places that do :"freezer to fryer" yup we are pricey,

5. And finally Live Music? Here again I know it's taste, but we hire the best musicians in the area and many times from Portland or Seattle. No their not Vegas quality but they are hard working musicians that devote their lives to music on a regular basis, many live in the area and are enjoyed on a weekly basis by us backward, uninformed, limited north coast residents.

So I've really tried to keep within TripAdvisors advice and kept my reply on a positive, mostly humble reply and not my old New York wise guy ways. In either case thank you for your review.

John Sowa
xchef/owner

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 April 2018

My husband I came here last November 2017 for our 20th wedding anniversary and loved it! Had dinner there tonight (April 2018) and it was fabulous! Enjoyed their Osso Bucco tremendously! The prices for this area were very reasonable. 10% discount for cash. Highly recommended!!

1  Thank Sherri N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mrsilverfox, Owner at Sweet Basil's Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 1 May 2018

Thamks for your review. I' m glad we added to your special day last year and again recently. Hope to see you on a return visit to CB

John Sowa
chef/owner

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2018

Excellent from start to finish. Thursday two-for-one is a great deal, but come early. Service is a little slow, so prepare to savor.

1  Thank Timoan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 April 2018 via mobile

My main reason for choosing a restaurant is food. In this aspect, Sweet Basil’s passed with flying colors. The food was fantastic. The portions are big and choice ingredients are plentiful. The chef/ owners let you know ahead of time that it is a bit slow since all dishes are prepared right after the orders. This is not a gimmick since I saw them chopping and preparing through the open kitchen. The wait staffs are a bit surly but they did warm up slightly but they never get to being cheerful and solicitous. But as I have said, I come here to eat and all others are secondary. I ordered a glass of wine and I think they are very generous with the pouring. Life music entertainment was good.

1  Thank Rick H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mrsilverfox, Owner at Sweet Basil's Cafe, responded to this reviewResponded 23 April 2018

Thanks for taking the time to give us a review. Really happy you enjoyed our food and efforts to offer fresh ingredients that just take time to prepare. Sorry to hear about the "surly" part, I'm trying to figure what happened as I usually hear good things about the staff. Ill certainly keep an eye on that, but thanks for your honesty.

John sowa
Chef/owner

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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