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The Porter: a disappointment

We were originally going for some cult burgers. But before I can even step out of my car in the parking lot, I got a text and then a call from Broderick: “It’s CLOSED!!!” I could not believe my eyes. And ears. So we ended up at The Porter in Little Five Points. One thing about this area is that it is quite difficult to find parking space. We did manage to snag one a couple of blocks away. I love cold weather but the blustery 18°F weather made it painful to walk to and back.

I remember when this place used to be Bridgetown Grill (they had those awesome pineapple bread straight out of the oven!) It has evolved a few more times but the place looks exactly the same, save for a few knickknacks as decoration. As a beer bar, they have pages and pages of all kinds of beer available. I am not a big drinker — three sips of wine or alcohol literally knocks me out (yeah, I know, I am a cheap date). But Broderick liked his Belgian and my sister loved her German. Do not ask me what they were. I can not tell you. I did find something that looked delicious in print: Hitachino. It has 12.5% alcohol content. I hate to imagine what that will do to me.

Let me just say that all the dishes that Broderick and my sister picked were fantastic. As for me, well, I must have been wearing a “Hate Me” sticker on my forehead…

The Porter (L5P)

The duck prosciutto with poached eggs and greens (sorry, not a salad fan) was really great. The duck was very tender with a saltish flavor that went well with the egg and greens.

The Porter (L5P)

The Belgian fries were outstanding. The garlic in the oil used was quite pronounced but not in an aggressive kind of way. The charred onion mayo dipping sauce was creamy and oniony. Better eat these fries while hot and crispy as they became soggy as soon as they cooled.

The Porter (L5P)

My not-so-good luck started with the mains. Broderick and I both wanted the pork chop but since he called first dibs and they only had one left (it was after 10PM after all), I had to choose something else. A clear winner, the center-cut pork chop was thick and juicy and perfectly grilled. It had a clean, simple salt and pepper flavor all the way through. The pasta and mushroom provided texture and the pan jus made it a really great dish.

The Porter (L5P)

My sister’s Kraut and Beer Brats was also good. The homemade bratwursts had a nice snap to them. They had a slight herby taste that I really liked. The sauerkraut could have used a little more acidity but it was a good accompaniment, nonetheless.

The Porter (L5P)

So just my luck, the half-pound cheeseburger that I got was a total let-down. Although cooked medium in the middle, it had a hard, dry, dark, well-done crust on the outside. It was also flavorless. Even the good, soft and buttery tomato focaccia it came in could not save this failure. (For the record, that side salad of greens and pickled beets went to my sister.)

Now for the best part… Totally disappointed and still hungry, I decided to get their banana crepe. Visions of Paris and the crepes we got there from the street and cafes at every visit played in my mind. I just knew it was going to be good. I mean, how hard is it to mess up crepes?

The Porter (L5P)

I wanted to cry so bad when it was set in front of us. What came was what looked like banana slices swimming in dark brown gooey soup. Banana soup? Did they think I would not notice that this (insert your favorite expletive here) does not even look remotely close to a crepe? I felt so offended. It was so gooey. It was sickeningly sweet. It. Was. Not. A. Crepe!!!

I hardly have disappointing meals. In fact, I can only think of one in the last couple of years. And now this. You know, to me, you only get one chance to make a first impression.  Especially if it costs me $60.  I had to make a 2AM run to Krystals just to erase the memory from my mind. And mouth.

Many thanks to Savory Exposure for the pictures.

The Porter
1156 Euclid Ave NE
Atlanta, GA 30307
(404) 223-0393

The Porter on Urbanspoon

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7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Allison // Jan 8, 2010 at 6:28 pm

    why are you getting crepes at a bar? the burger letdown is a legit travesty though….

  • 2 Twitter Trackbacks for The Porter: a disappointment [chowdownatlanta.com] on Topsy.com // Jan 8, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    [...] The Porter: a disappointment http://www.chowdownatlanta.com/the-porter-a-disappointment – view page – cached We were originally going for some cult burgers. But before I can even step out of my car in the parking lot, I got a text and then a call from Broderick: “It’s CLOSED!!!” I could not believe my eyes. And ears. So we ended up at The Porter in Little Five Points. One thing about this area is that it is quite difficult to find parking space. [...]

  • 3 Matt Freedman // Jan 9, 2010 at 11:14 am

    While I love the layout – making your way to the back is like wending your way through a secret passage – the food at the Porter has always disappointed me.

    You’d think Seegers alums would easily produce top-notch bar food, but you’d be very wrong.

  • 4 Gigi // Jan 10, 2010 at 3:09 am

    I’ve only ever had breakfast at The Porter, yep breakfast at a beer bar.

    And I love it every time.

  • 5 Sean M // Jan 13, 2010 at 6:19 pm

    Porter is aight. hardly any places do a burger right in town though. I mean don’t go here after HF and try to order a burger. wtf. maybe Grindhouse (yeah their hours suck) but not here. Anyway, that Hitachino is whatevs. the bird on the bottle is pretty.

    sawicki’s sells good burger meat if you are so inclined to make your own. just put tons of salt on the patties, some american cheese, and you’re halfway to a HF burger.

  • 6 Shel // Jan 14, 2010 at 6:12 pm

    Yikes, bad burger at a bar is like a funeral dirge! Sorry it was so terrible, but glad that some things are right and you were able to inform what’s good to order and what’s not. My friends all enjoyed the various sandwiches there, and while I thought my salad was great, I agree that after 10pm the service and atmosphere is a little lacking. You’d think a bar would be hopping after 10pm!

  • 7 Brian S // Jan 25, 2010 at 12:55 pm

    I’ve been to a few restaurants that seemed to be lacking management or ownership. If everything goes well, I suppose it isn’t a big deal. If things go wrong and service or food is not up to par, it can only make things worse. I had a terrible experience at the Porter. No one went around checking on tables, making sure their customers had been well taken care of. It makes it difficult for me to plan to give them a second try. I see that people still rave about their food. My burger experience was similar to yours. At the airport, I’d expect a burger like that. At a bar, where people rave about the burger… never.

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