Barb's Corner Kitchen has been around for years in Lawrenceville, serving up a mix of homestyle and diner food like grilled sandwiches, pastas, and wings.
But given their early morning to mid afternoon hours (and limited late night hours on weekends), perhaps what they're most known for is their breakfast food- consisting of omelettes, eggs benedicts, waffles, pancakes, and more, all served up in a very eclectic diner-style atmosphere.
We heard many good things about Barb's from friends, and most had fond memories of eating there back when there really weren't that many other dining options in Lawrenceville. So we visited this one with a fair bit of excitement as we continue our quest to find Pittsburgh's best breakfast spots.
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Maybe we were just there on an off day, or maybe we had one truly awful waiter, but we felt the quality and service was lacking a fair bit and we cannot let it go unsaid.
Bad Day or Bad Waiter? We're Not Sure
We got a table right away on a Sunday for brunch. After putting our order in, it took an absurdly long time to receive our food even though the place didn't appear busy in the slightest.
During our wait we watched as other guests received their meals, overheard one waitress practically shout to another on the other side of the restaurant that she was “going out for a puff,” and in my case I sat with an empty coffee cup for most of that time as well. To say that our waiter was inattentive would be an understatement, and it truly set the tone of the meal to come.
When we finally received our food, most of it was lukewarm like it had been sitting around a while. Jeremy ordered a special omelette of the day which had sausage, bacon, and veggies in it, while I ordered the Florentine omelette with spinach and Swiss cheese.
The special omelette tasted rather generic flavors for having so much going on, but the Florentine was pretty good and garlicky and would be something I'd definitely order again if it was served warmer.
Both omelettes came with hash browns, which had a good seasoning but were fairly soft and almost mushy over crispy potatoes you'd expect. The toast fared a bit better as it was Mancini's Italian bread slathered with butter and was actually warm- making it the best thing at the table during our meal.
Overall, Barb's was a big letdown for us, as our slow service really ruined what could've been an otherwise decent meal.
Add in the fact that the restaurant wasn't busy in the slightest and that others seemed to get their meals at a fairly normal pace we have to question a few things.
Would the meal have been better warm and delivered in a timely manner? Yes. Would we have had a better visit if we had a different waiter? By far. Would this review have been completely different had it been that way? Absolutely. Will we return to see if we are right about these things?
Now that truly is the question.
Barb's Corner Kitchen is located at 4711 Butler Street in Lawrenceville.