The Sleepy Bee is as cute as a button. You might expect to find a place like this in Palo Alto. Now, mind you, most of the “avant” places I have gone have been disappointing, but Sleepy Bee delivers, mostly. Their premise is to have a nice restaurant with lots of organic and “clean” choices of as locally grown foods as possible. Do that for a reasonable price.
I met a friend there, I got in early and was told it was a 5-10 min. wait (that was true). I poured myself a coffee at the bar (as I was invited to do) and repaired to the back room which is a comfortable waiting area with couches, chairs, and windows. There was a big wrapped new kitchen appliance sharing the space with us, but that wasn’t a mortal sin.
I was called and given a nice table in the middle of the floor and my friend joined me. Nice waitress, automatic water with ice, I already had my coffee…now it was time to scry the menu.
Good choices, especially for The Eternal Dieter. I chose a Bee Chop salad. I didn’t hear what my friend ordered BECAUSE IT IS REALLY LOUD INSIDE THE SLEEPY BEE. ALL OF YOUR CONVERSATIONS IN THE EATING AREA HAVE TO BE CARRIED ON AT A HALF SCREAM. YOU GET USED TO IT BUT IT’S A BIT TAXING.
My Bee Chop advertised avocado, feta, pine nuts, beets, kale, spinach and other stuff. I asked if I could have it with the chilantro ginger dressing. There was also a piece of bread which was supposed to come with.
My salad was chock full of dark leafy greens. Lots of fresh and tender kale and spinach. Alas, the avocado was a very small portion. Very. Small. There were a few shaves of beets, a yellow piece or two, I found a pine nut, good serving of feta. No bread. I asked the waitress for it and she was very obliging, so that was OK. The dressing was about 100% oil. I could not tell there was any chilantro or ginger in it. It was filling and satisfying but not real interesting aside from it’s being so dark green.
The coffee was really good.
My friend actually got a bowl of chicken noodle soup, a small salad which looked like mine minus the teensy piece of avocado and lots of feta, and a side of roasted root vegetables. I only tasted the latter and they were OK. Red potatoes and what appeared to be yams…they were pretty bland, good for you but insipid. They would have been helped by a splash of lemon juice or a twist of Parmesan cheese. maybe a bit of balsamic vinegar? There was a cup of yellow dipping stuff which came with it but it was spectacularly bland as well.
I am willing to give The Sleepy Bee another chance. The price was good for a “clean” lunch, the service was very good, and if they would just spice it up a little bit they would have a winner. I am going back and I bet it will be first class.
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