Northstar House, a small locally-owned restaurant located in Fall Creek, is rumored to have a killer brunch, which led me to choose it for this edition of “Duffett’s Buffets.” I must admit that I am not the biggest fan of the “brunch” concept. For one, I hate breakfast, but what I truly hate is ruining a perfectly good meal by serving breakfast food for lunch. Luckily, Northstar also serves sandwiches on their brunch menu that are completely untouched by any sort of breakfast-type food. In addition, my friends said that the place was a pretty hot spot, and so we decided to check it out.
My friends and I elected to eat outside. The atmosphere in the back was somewhat lacking, with just a few tables situated next to the parking lot and absolutely no visual appeal. The floor was in desperate need of sweeping, with leaves scattered everywhere. The atmosphere would have been improved if we had come at night, in which case there would have been lights hanging above the tables. The inside of the restaurant did appear to be slightly better, with a nice seating area near the bar (which mainly focused on beer), even selling nifty growlers for draft beer enthusiasts. If I were to return, I would definitely opt for an evening table outside as I feel the atmosphere would have been slightly more pleasing.
Brunch was pretty standard: sandwiches, burgers, a couple of salads, and your typical brunch entrees. I ordered a BLT with a side salad, opting to stick with a more “lunchy” entree as any egg-related dish is simply not my scene. The sandwich seemed to be prepared on some sort of french bread, with a little bit of mayo and thick and crispy bacon. Both the salad and the sandwich were overall very tasty. But I didn’t feel that impressed because, well, anyone can make a decent BLT. My friends ordered the french toast and the roasted garlic burger, which both seemed to be fine as well. I was actually rather jealous of the roasted garlic burger, which was prepared on a brioche bun with cheddar cheese, tomato, onion, greens, and a garlic aioli; all in all, it looked and tasted pretty darn prime.
What especially disappointed me about Northstar was their absolutely hideous service. The food took a rather long time to arrive, and our server neglected to refill our water and did not ask us how our meal was. What really pushed the service to the edge, though, was the fact that once we received the check, they refused to split it. What they should have done in the beginning was ask us if we wanted separate checks, and their refusal led to a slight issue at the end. They ended up agreeing to let us pay with multiple credit cards and cash, and my frustrated friends decided to display their anger by partially paying for their meal with coins. Surprisingly, the waitress took the change, though with a displeased look on her face.
Northstar claims to be “Fall Creek’s Neighborhood Spot for Fine Food, Lively Libations and Nice Nice Vibes,” a statement that I would frankly have to disagree with. Despite the decent food, the restaurant barely displays those “Nice Nice Vibes” that it claims to have.
Rating: The poor service caused me to reduce Northstar House’s rating from what would have been 3.5 Duff Buffs to 2 Duff Buffs.