Monday, March 26, 2007

A Bad Night in Lidsville

Sid Krofft, best known as the co-creator of "H.R. PuffnStuff" with his brother Marty, opened a new "see and be scene" restaurant & nightclub in West Hollywood last month called "Eleven."

It's a dramatically beautiful space in a building built in the 30s as a bank and later converted to a recording studio (where Prince recorded "Purple Rain," for instance).

Now if the kitchen could get its act together then the place would really be something special.

GeezBob and I went there early Saturday evening for dinner before going to a show. We ordered the bone-in rib eye for two and then waited and waited and waited.

After about a 25 minute wait I let our waiter know we were under a little time pressure because we were going to a show that began at 8 p.m.

After a 40 minute wait the chef finally came out for the dramatic "tableside carving" of the steak. Unfortunately, I lost my appetite after two bites when the steak kept squirming. The steak we had ordered "medium well" (and waited 40 minutes for) was blood red.

Under normal circumstance I would have simply sent the meat back to be cooked some more but by this point we were 20 minutes from the curtain and the theater was a couple of miles away.

So I got mine wrapped to go and asked for the check. No one from the restaurant checked to see if there was a problem and the chef certainly should have see the steak he cooked wasn't anywhere near as we had ordered it.

(In all fairness it must be noted that GeezBob really liked the steak and even reported that my leftovers -- which I gave him after being traumatized by the mooing -- cooked up real good for breakfast Sunday morning.)

We dashed off to the theater and GeezBob ran in to demand they hold the curtain while I parked the car. I slipped into the 99th seat in the theater with 98 sets of eyeballs looking at me just as the show began.

The evening, however, was redeemed by the Celebration Theater and they're lovely production of "Beautiful Thing," a touching story of two 16 year olds who fall in love in a London housing project.

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