My Easter Sunday brunch nightmare started on Good Friday around 9 pm…
I’d planned earlier to join about 15 friends at the new Swagger in Martin City. I knew a couple of the people that were opening this new hot spot, but then they told me they might not have a brunch available on Easter. Dang.
So I told my friends we needed a new Easter plan.
Unfortunately, by that time it was way too late to make a reservation at Nick and Jake’s, the Bristol, or anywhere halfway impressive. But hey, I wanted to try a new brunch anyway.
So I made a reservation for four at Seventy Seven South for 11:00 am.
This is where on the the day Christ rose from the grave my day took a turn for the worst.
Where were you on this one, Jesus%u200B?
Seventy Seven South is located at 5041 w. 135th in Leawood and has been said to be a swingers bar.
The jury’s still out on that one.
However an employee did tell me the old location that opened in 1971 at 77th and Troost (which is how they got the name) used to give out a blue candle to guests just trying to get a drink or some food and red ones to swingers.
The Troost location only lasted nine years but I don’t think its brunch had anything to do with its demise.
Still it’s a little CREEPY. I found all this out AFTER my Easter disaster. The new location has been in business for about three years and the owner Chris Arnold has ties to the old 77 South.
The new 77 South location kind of has a 70’s atmosphere to it, but not really. The bar looks nice and is the first thing you see as you enter. The patio is also very nice with patio furniture classy enough to pull it off in Leawood.
The tables are a bit generic but some of the art on the walls helps vault you back to the 70’s. Is that enough though? Overall 77 South looks like the old Dick Clark’s American Bandstand on Metcalf at 435.
I’d had brunch at 77 South before and it was good – almost very good. Its Bloody Mary bar had lots of mixes to chose from plus plain old tomato juice that you could spice up with at least six choices of seasonings and an array of fresh vegetables and fruit to garnish it with.
The food buffet was also very nice for $17.95. There were some great breakfast and dinner selections and it was an excellent value.
However this brunch was very bad.
First off, 77 South’s every other Sunday brunch (which they stopped several months ago and just started back up) is $17.95. But for Easter they jacked it to $28.95, which is almost price gouging. To take advantage of families on a religious holiday – and 77 South is right in front of a enormous church – that’s bush league!
I remembered how good the Bloody Marys were so I ordered one from my server, who said “ Help yourself” and disappeared. Now I know as a bartender that you certainly don’t let guests just go and pour their own drinks, so I waited about two minutes.
He came back and said this was his first brunch and he’d be right back with my glass of ice and vodka. He tried to up-sell me to a better vodka but I said no because I was going to spice it up at the Bloody Mary bar. However most of the spices and seasonings were gone. All I had to chose from was four tomato mixes, some dried up limes that were cut four days earlier and cocktail onions and green olives (which I hate more that cocktail onions).
What, no celery even? So the Bloody Mary bar was a complete disappointment.
On to the food, if you can call it that.
First we peeked at the two carving tables. There was ham and roast beef on separate stations, but the two kids carving looked like they were maybe 16 and wearing polo’s.
Can you at least put a Mexican with some kitchen experience up there and a chef”s coat on him so it looks like your trying to impress?
We passed on the meat – I never do a brunch for the carved meat anyway.
Then I hit the buffet lineup. Seventy Seven South had most of the traditional brunch staples like bacon, sausage, and scrambled eggs, but I wasn’t impressed. Then I had the unfortunate experience of coming across the Eggs Benedict. But by the time I got to the catering chafer there were only two in there, so I took one.
When I came back later and there was still only one. Which tells me two things.
They don’t care enough to replenish their buffet or nobody’s eating it.
Plus it wasn’t very busy which I noticed when I first came in the dining room.
The rest of the food on the buffet was disgusting at best.
There were shells and cheese for a pasta that looked like it came right out of a box. The salmon cutlets were OK but way under seasoned and there were chicken wings with no seasoning that appeared to have been maybe boiled. They were wet and soggy and made me sad to look at. Unfortunately I tried one.
This brunch was so BAD, I’ve actually had better food in jail (thank-you Overland Park Department of Corrections).
OOOOOH, but it gets worse.
The sign outside of 77 South boasted of its fresh crab legs and shrimp. The crab legs (which I did not try but my friends did) were cooked but then just left on a big serving platter and not even close to being warm. Plus these were the smallest crab legs I have ever seen.
Have you ever seen the Deadliest Catch?
Those fishermen throw back the small crabs because it’s illegal to catch them and sell them, but I suspect some of those might have found their way to 77 South. These crabs looked bulimic and sad. And naturally, there was no warm butter to dip them in, just a dish of lemons.
At least offer it, or tell me to stay away from the shitty seafood table, because the shrimp wasn’t any better.
The shrimp tasted frozen and old and the cocktail sauce was even worse. It wasn’t a sauce, but more of a paste. Because when I tried to put my shrimp in the jelled mess it just moved around my plate, almost running away from the shrimp. The cocktail sauce was probably squeezed into that serving bowl like space food.
Seventy Seven South’s dessert table reminded me of a trailer park wedding reception.
It was made up of dry brownies and crappy pastries that looked like they came straight out of the box at Sam’s Club. I should know – I catered that joke of a wedding once.
After my experience on Easter I will not be going back to Seventy Seven South. You know, unless I meet a super hot cougar with dentures (Insert joke here).
Seventy Seven South is also having a Mother’s Day brunch in case you really hate your MOM.
Or her name is Casey Anthony or something. That brunch is only $23.95. What a deal!!! They’re also having a DJ on Cinco de Mayo, so you can celebrate Mexico’s independence from the French in a 70’s themed bar and drink martinis.
Look, here’s how I see it; if your restaurant is next to Bonefish Grill and right behind the Gaslight Grill, you have to do better. Especially on Easter brunch. I could have waited for hours at the Gaslight Grill just to have a good to great brunch at around 3pm.
Guess I should have.