Monday, 6 May 2013


2247 Rymal Rd East, Hamilton
visited Saturday May 4, 2013

I was here at Symposium cafe this past Saturday for a lovely baby shower for an old friend.  Having been here several times for a variety of meals I knew the selection, price and food would all be good, especially for a large group.  Unfortunately I may have been a little to optimistic this time around. 

Although there was only 9 of us ladies plus 3 little ones, i felt the space they set up was a little cramped, but they obviously did the best they could with what they had.  That said it didn't dampen the mood or ruin any part of the celebration.  Our waitress was pleasant and efficient and sometimes a bit forceful in cutting into our conversations to take drink or meal orders..but she was simply doing her job i guess.  I ordered a cappuccino, and she politely reminded me it was a $1.75 extra with a full breakfast as the wording on the menu is a little confusing and had I this problem the first time I came.  The cappuccino came quickly and was smooth with lots of milky foam.  Definitely a good cup of caffeine for the price.
After we all arrived she took our order and made sure to keep us all on separate bills which was nice.  The place was fairly busy but they weren't to capacity and most other times I've come the food has been fairly quick to arrive.  I'm not sure if the group was just too large or the kitchen was short staffed but it felt like an eternity before the food came and a few of the girls were digging into their shower take home treats just to hold them over.  There was actually a couple across from us who came in 20 min after we did and then had ordered, eaten and paid before we even got our food. 

It gave us time to chit chat at least and had it not been for our catching up with one another, this wait might have felt even longer.  I ordered the Mississippi Benedict for $11.95; two poached eggs served on two crab cakes and asparagus with dill hollandaise sauce and homefries on the side.  In theory this sounds delicious but in reality it sorta failed.  The hollandaise sauce was a glumpy congealed yellow mess that i mostly scraped to the side.  The asparagus was way overcooked and more grey than green.  The crab cakes were deep fried to a crunchy oblivion and had a fishy, imitation crab taste.  Luckily the poached eggs were perfect with runny yolks.  The homefries were decent, not too greasy with crunch on the outside and soft on the inside, although I probably should've asked for a side of fruit since I'm not a huge homefries fan.  That being said I did eat most of my plate, only because I was starving by this point and it had turned into lunch not breakfast. 

I'm sad to have to give this experience a poor rating since most other times I've had fairly good meals.   The daily promotions throughout the week are always good.  The $3.75 Burger Mondays are big and juicy and great bang for your buck.  The 2 for 1 Sunday cake slices are a delicious treat, and most other breakfast meals I've had there are standard but good. 

It's a good place for a variety of meals (breakfast through dinner with desserts and an extensive drink menu) and for a variety of tastes.  Its casual and inviting but because it serves such a range in food and drink its decor is a morph between breakfast cafe to family restaurant to dessert lounge.  I'm still gonna give this place the benefit of the doubt and because I live so close I'll probably return again for one of their promo meal days.  Next time no Mississippi Benedict for me though!

Food 2.5*, Value 3.5*, Service 4.0*, Decor/Ambiance 3.0*
Overall 3.25* I've had better food and service here before so I won't hold it against them this time 'round, but next time better not be a disappointment. 

 Symposium Cafe Restaurant Dining on Urbanspoon

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