C J Cannons- Vero Beach- At regional airport
1 Star (for service, 0 Star for food)
"Rebellions of the belly are the worst." -- Sir Francis Bacon
My life seems to be at the extremes as of late. My trusty BBDO random generator has been either sending me up North to the Titusville area or down South to Vero Beach with no stops in between. If you are a loyal reader (thank you if you are, what's wrong with you if you're not?) you will know that while Titusville is picking up the pace a bit when it comes to good places to eat, Vero Beach is turning into a veritable haute cuisine hot spot. This time, CJ Cannons in Vero Beach popped up and so I boarded the BBDO mobile, pointed her south and let it rip.
I knew I was getting closer as airplanes seemed to be bombarding me from everywhere and I knew CJ's overlooked the Vero Beach Airport. With ample parking, I soon found an open spot, parked the Beast and headed inside. I was immediately taken aback by the interior of CJ Cannons. Once seated and handed a menu, I became to scan the selections while waiting for my server.
I didn't have long to read the menu when my server, Jennifer, pounced on me to see if I was ready to order. She was attentive, professional, on the ball and not only the saving grace of my meal but the sole reason for the 1 Star rating, otherwise, it would have been a 0 (but I get ahead of myself). She walked me through their very large, diverse menu with ease and grace. I at once got the feeling that this place was a throwback to a bygone era when servers actually took time to chit chat a bit with each customer as they went over the menu with them. Asking Jennifer if the burger and slaw were made in house, and being assured that they were, I went ahead and placed my order for a Cobb Salad and a Bacon Cheeseburger (medium rare) with a side of the aforementioned "made in house" Coleslaw.
I was really getting into the old-time aviation stuff when I saw Jennifer approaching with my order. As you can clearly see by the pictures, the Cobb Salad was a sad representative of the salad family as the greens were extremely wilted and the avocado was overly ripe two days before it ended up on my salad. The chicken was over grilled and so dry my tongue thought we were in the Sahara. The bacon crumbles were actually real bacon, though a tad overcooked. As for the advertised Gorgonzola cheese, if you move the picture around a bit, you can see a crumble and between me and you, there wasn't that much more to be found under the dry bed of chicken. The dressing on the side was your average industrialized high fructose corn syrup artificially flavored crap just like mom made (note sarcasm).
I have had many, many bacon cheeseburgers in my lifetime, just ask my cardiologist, he can attest to the fact that as of the last visit I had chunks of bacon floating in my blood As a born and raised Southerner I have had vast vats worth of coleslaw. In other words, I know these food items extremely well. I can say, without a shadow of a doubt that not only was the ground beef used in this excuse for a burger I was served low grade, but it was by no means hand formed. I have met maybe two people in my life that can make a perfectly round, symmetrical, even thickness all around hamburger patty by hand, and I assure you, neither of them is employed in this pitiful excuse for a diner. Not only was I lied to about it being formed in the back, but it was by no stretch of the imagination cooked to a medium rare unless by rare the cook thought I meant well. And the "homemade" coleslaw? Not a chance was this made fresh in the back. I mean, just look at the picture. It was not completely crisp and generally flavorless. With uniform cuts in the veggies, I stand by my assumption that I was lied to and this was not made on site. Oh, someone might have ripped open a bag of pre-cut and pre-shredded veggies and tossed it all in a bowl with some prepared slaw sauce out of a can, but that hardly constitutes being made fresh in the kitchen!
Look. I get it. Maybe my reputation is preceding me too much and Jennifer was afraid to tell me the stuff was from a distributor, but really. Why lie? Like no one can tell the difference between fresh and canned/jarred/frozen? Noticing the crowd gathering for their meals, I couldn't for the life of me figure out why. Unless it was all about the views of the planes landing and taking off. I know a lot of people get into plane watching and this is a beautiful place in which to do just that but talk about the wheels falling off the bus. Holy smokes this was terrible.
The Big Boy says, "There are a ton of better restaurants close by, so unless you are looking for a place just to watch the comings and goings of aircraft, I would suggest one of those, over the rubbage being slung here any day of the week." #bigboydiningout #iamthebigboy