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Marinka said: "I had my 29th birthday on Friday night in Besos Latinos and we LOVED IT !!!! Such a great ambient. The service was great it wasn’t extra pro but they tried their best witch was really nice to see.The waiters are young people…" read more »
After reading the mixed reviews I decided to try the Library Cafe anyway. I came here for Mothers Day with my 6 month old son, husband, Mum and Mother and Father-in-law. We had a great experience.
The interior (set in the old library) is stylish, the staff were friendly and the service was very good. The food was good – my big breakfast was hot (unlike another reviewers on this site) and Mum had ‘the best seafood chowder’ she’s tasted. It is a funky cafe, family friendly and a nice place to relax on a Sunday morning. I would definitely go back.
The marketing of this cafe is also very good- the website and menu design are stylish and providing vouchers (to encourage us to return) on leaving the cafe was a great idea. The Library Cafe certainly delivered for us, on what was a busy day of the year.
Just had the big breakfast here a.k.a. The Full Library. It was such a disappointment, I had to stop by the dairy to get something that would remove the taste from my mouth. The sausage and mushrooms were slightly burnt, and cold for some reason. The toast was served with a stick of butter, but since they had already slopped the eggs on top of the toast it kinda seemed pointless. The hash browns were the sort you would get from Countdown. My wife’s corn fritters were undercooked, yet somehow they were also burnt, she also got two burnt slithers of bacon for an additional $4.50. My daughter’s sandwich meal consisted a dry toasted sandwich with a lot of other dry stuff: dried banana pieces, pretzels, 2x thinly sliced (dry) apple.
I just read they have a new chef. The last time I dined here was late in 2012 and back then I had a more positive dining experience.
I’m compelled to write about the excellent meal I had last night. Ok, I bought a deal voucher and was coming back reluctantly after an average experience last year but I was so pleasantly surprised! The wait-staff were helpful and friendly, knowledgeable and paying attention to the customers. Basically perfect service! Our meals were equally excellent. Two eye fillet mains, cooked perfectly and dessert which we shared which was a huge step up from the usual approach of counter food served on a plate. Thanks for a really unexpectedly great dining experience.
We have been here quite a few times over the past few years and love that it is kid friendly and the service is pretty good. However, we think this will be the last time… the food has gone downhill. We were drawn in by the no surcharge over Easter but were seriously let down by the food. We had a custard tart and a cheesecake. The cheesecake was ok but the custard tart was rubbery, not sweet- quite bitter and had that awful “been in the fridge too long” taste. We asked for it to be replaced (much as we hate doing that) and the waitress was very good about it. We had a Brownie instead. We should have stuck with the custard tart- the brownie was like a raw pudding and had these sticky but gritty white chunky bits- I’m scared to think what they were… My 2 year old even spat it out. We left it on the plate and shared our cheesecake! The coffee- not so good and the fluffy was filled to the top with milk and a little foam on top- not a fluffy.
All in all this place needs to revisit its quality and TASTE their own food!
I live locally and go here only because of play area for kids and no other reason. The counter food is always stale, I have returned items a number of times and had them replaced with something equally as dry. It has so much potential to be a great place with humming atmosphere, music would be a start but it’s always a last resort option.
My husband and I visited this cafe for lunch today, as we had been before and had been impressed with the food.
Today was a bit of a let down. While the service was good (we were promptly shown to our table and given a bottle of water with two glasses, and were able to order not long after that), we felt the food was overpriced and lacking in quality. There was less on the menu than when we last visited, so after a bit of uncertainty about what to order, we both settled on the venison burger (which came with fries).
The venison was fine, but was inside a standard white bun. The lettuce in the bun was wilted, the cucumber was not fresh, and the fries that came with the burger were extremely greasy. The aioli that was provided as a dipping sauce for the fries was too oily. My water glass had that egg-like smell which happens when glasses are wiped with dirty dishcloths. If today is anything to go by, this cafe is becoming less quality-focused, while still charging the same high prices.
While the environment is nice, the food is what really matters, and we were not too happy with our meal.
Omg! It was positively unexpected experience!! The food was unbelievable and tasted exquisite and divine.The staffs were awesome and with variety choices of food menu to choose from it was great to have a changed view on the cafe and was a splendid experience.Is the cafe under new management or new chef either way it was fabulous and fantastic tasting food. Compliments to the team. Truly recommended. 10/10
How on earth did Metro Magazine vote this cafe into the top 50?
There is nothing good about this place.
Firstly the atmosphere is strange – like you’re at an old fashioned Bed and Breakfast (but not in a good way). No music…a couple of books….there’s a TV on the wall, computers in weird spots.
The service is equally as strange.
I had the BLT on the worst bagel I’ve ever eaten. It was drowning in aoli and grease.
The coffee – average – with a dirty teaspoon.
A bad experience all round. I highly recommend not going there.
I wish I had read these online reviews before I tried the Library Cafe. Having decided to take my Mum and son out for brunch, and Mum having seen what she said had been a decent write up in the Herald about this place, we headed there for our brunch.
Yes it is a nice building, but as the other reviewers say, it definitely could do with some ambiance. Aside from that, the food is overpriced for what presents as very basic fare coupled with hopeless service. Other than showing us to our table and eventually delivering our food, that was all we saw of the wait staff.
We waited at least 15 minutes for someone to come and take our order until it seemed no one would arrive, and we joined arriving and existing customers in the queue at the counter to order the meals. Whether it was intended to operate that way, I have no idea. But if they had told us that was the situation from the outset we could have decided what we wanted when we were lining up in the queue to be seated to start with.
I dine out regularly and am happy to pay more when the food and service warrant it. But in this case, the food was average (and in the case of a couple of the items simply inedible) and the service almost non-existent. It wasn’t worth it and I will not be back.
Just wanted to write a quick thank you to the staff at the Library Cafe who are always so welcoming! I recently met with a friend there, we were able to have a great catch up over a delicious lunch and coffee while my very active nearly 2 yr old happily bounced his heart out on their trampoline and then raced up and down the slide!
A friend also recently told me how impressed she was as when it was time for her to leave (with three kids) it was pouring with rain. A staff member offered to hold her baby while she took the buggy/older kids etc and brought the car closer! She said it made her day and was so appreciative. Thanks for going the extra mile for us frazzled mums who cherish our time out
Went there for working lunch with a number of other professionals. Very good food and service
We came here for lunch to celebrate some family birthdays with three small children and a baby. It was recommended due to the fact that it was child friendly and also catered for vegetarians/ diabetics/ allergies etc.
In fact the menu was not that clear on the special requirements – I think it is best to just ask if you want something changed to suit you.
The menu was simple cafe meals – nothing outstanding. My ‘smoked fish pie’ was more like a seafood chowder, but tasty. The kids meals were fantastic – little cut up pieces of ham, cheese, fruit with crackers and hummus – the littlies ate them all up. My sister said it was the best kids meals she had seen out.
The indoor playground was quite small for how many kids were playing there and the room was very noisy, but when we asked if the kids could play outside we were told no – it was too wet, even though it had stopped raining.
The man who served us was very friendly and welcoming – we saw him later handing out marshmellows to the kids in the playground. However the three or four women waitresses barely had a smile between them.
We were going to stay on for a sweet or a cake, but nothing in the cabinet looked appealing and on top of that no one took our plates away for over half an hour.
Overall, I think the Library Cafe is on to a good thing but just needs to get a few basics right to be excellent.
UPDATE: I came here again the following Sunday for brunch and endured the same poor service – getting orders wrong, missing one person altogether etc. It is just a shame that poor service can let down what should be an excellent cafe.
UPDATE 2: I have had some email discussion with the owner of the Library Cafe who is serious about making improvements to this place. I am impressed that the cafe has taken on the feedback and I am looking forward to visiting again soon to check it out.
I am not normally one to complain….. BUT today the only thing I found inspiring about our meal and the service was that it inspired my internal critic to come to the surface.
We recently moved house and are in search of a new local for our weekend brunch. After waking up to rumbling tummies we googled 5 different cafes menus and decided that the Library Cafe appealed to us most. Big mistake!
We arrived and were greeted by not one but three rather incompetent staff that each asked us on three separate occasions whether or not we wished to be seated. It felt more like they were herding sheep than greeting customers. When we finally were seated we were perched on the end of a table for 10 (there were only 2 of us) when there were obviously more suitable options available.
For such a beautiful old building this place has so much potential but yet it seemed to lack any ambience. It would be nice if there was some background music or something to create some atmosphere. I know it is ‘The Library Cafe’ but we certainly weren’t in there to do sustained silent reading!
Soon after we sat down they came to take our order. My partner ordered the big breakfast and myself 5 sides consisting of toasted ciabatta, wilted spinach, bacon, hash browns and hollandaise. Anyone would have thought I was ordering in a different language as I had to carefully explain to the waiter on more than one occasion what it was that I wanted. Is it really that hard? My partner also ordered a coffee and I helped myself to a Charlies Feijoa Lemonade out of the fridge in the foyer. Thank you Mark Ellis – your juice was the highlight of my dining experience.
Soon after the waiter approached me to ask how it was I wanted my eggs cooked. Eggs? I didn’t order any eggs. This was then followed by a child juice box that we had apparently ordered being delivered to our table. I know my partner might be bald and his head does resemble that of a rather large baby but surely this was obviously not for us.
After 10 or so minutes our meals arrived. After sounding so amazing on the menu we were rather disappointed with what landed in front of us. My partners big breakfast was supposed to be served with TOASTED ciabatta. The ciabatta in his plate was about as toasted as you would get from drinking water on a Friday night e.g not toasted at all. This in turn turned into something resembling the soggy bread you might see floating around the duck pond at Western Springs. The mushrooms on his plate looked like that had been sauteed in wallpaper paste and had a complete lack of seasoning.
Now my man likes his food and it is not often he doesn’t clean his plate but he ate maybe half of is meal and pushed it aside stating that ‘I could have cooked something tastier at home’.
Now for my meal….. Well firstly, they forgot the spinach so I was presented with a plate of ciabatta, bacon, hash brown and hollandaise. I’m a girl and i like my greens so I pinched the spinach from my partners plate which was good as by the time they returned with $4 side of spinach I was half way through my meal. I guess they felt bad as it was a generous serve which compensated for the fact that the amount of hollandaise was so incredibly meagre.
However, I thought that their hash browns may just be there redeeming feature. They came out looking all homemade and crispy and I was salivating at the sight of them. Unfortunately, when I cut into them they were cold had no taste and were more like a mash that had been molded into squares and fried. To make them edible I had to add so much salt I should have had a coronary right there and then.
I should add we had been there for a about 40 minutes by now and the coffee we ordered at the start still hadn’t arrived. It is never nice to see all of the tables that arrived after you been served their coffee before you. We ended up telling the wait staff not to worry about it and going to Columbus straight afterwards for our caffeine fix.
We got up and paid and were oviously looking unimpressed as the girl at the counter asked if everything was ok. We were honest with her and said our experience had been sub-par.
Anyway, onwards and upwards…. for anyone looking for a local brunch stop in Onehunga I suggest they try the cafe up the road. We certainly won’t be back.
I visited the Library Cafe on June 17th with a friend. We arrived at just before 9am and settled outside ordering the Big Breakfast (I don’t recall the exact name) and a hot drink each. We chose to sit outside as both of us smoke cigarettes and we happily ate, drank and continued to spend our money.
Many other patrons came and went as we dined, some sitting next to us, some smoked and others sat elsewhere outside. It was about 1:30pm and after receiving our second meal (lunch) that we were approached by the manager who asked if we could please move to another table to accommodate two non-smoking customers.
The situation was this; there were two customers who didn’t smoke and us. There was an available table that seated two people, outside, in full view – yet she asked us to move, with our second round of meals and after being there for 4.5 hours.
She not only insulted the both of us, but we believe that we were discriminated against. Why else would you insist 2 customers who had been dining at your establishment for the entire morning to move, when you could have simply seated the customers at the obviously available table?
After her insistence we no longer wished to continue dining there and left immediately. When we went to pay she approached me and said ‘I hope that I didn’t offend you’ to which I responded with ‘Actually you did. You asked us to move when there was a perfectly good and available table’ She continued on ‘…oh, there wasn’t enough room for the two girls and that table was broken’
So you wanted to seat us at the small, broken table?!
This is the worst experience I have ever had – period. I do not recommend anyone dine here unless they want to be treated like second class citizens. The managers attitude is appalling and my friend and I will never ever be returning and neither will any of our friends, family or workmates!
I visited the Library Cafe last week as part of a large group of family for a special occasion. We found it extremely good. The staff made a slight error with the tables when we arrived, but were very quick to fix it and the chap sorting it out was extremely helpful and friendly. The food was excellent – I had the big breakfast and yes it’s slightly pricier than some places, but it was very high quality food, generous portions, and the meat and eggs were free-range (in fact the pork sausages were also organic) so I felt that it was priced appropriately. The coffee was also very good, and the food all came out at a good pace, particularly given that they were very busy. The staff service was pretty good on the whole – nothing spectacular but not bad at all.
I’m not quite sure why there’s so many negative reviews on this site for the Library, but maybe they’ve been ironing out some issues or something. If so, they certainly had it sorted the day we were there – I was extremely happy with the meal and I’ll definitely be going back again.
Went there the other day with a couple of friends for breakfast. I had the BLT bagel with side salad, the salad was pretty bad as it was soaked in oil, which made it inedible, one friend had a scone and she couldn’t finish it because it had a gritty texture. Overall the food was very average, and overpriced for what you get. The service was also very average, took a long time for the food and coffees to come out and the staff were very unhelpful. Very disappointed, we won’t be returning.
My husband and I along with our two children went to the Library Cafe on Sunday 9th of September. My 4 1/2 year old son has severe allergies to eggs, nuts and dairy and we carry an epi-pen with us wherever we go. I was so excited to discover the cafe and read the information on the website as being ‘specialists in GLUTEN-FREE & ALLERGY FRIENDLY CATERING!’
We don’t eat out much at all with our children due to my sons allergies, he can’t eat anything from the menu and cross cantamination of allergy food is always a concern, however he is happy to eat food prepared from home. (We can’t be complacent about the integrity of his food because we’ve had two anaphylactic shocks in his short life so far. This resulted in hospitalisation.)
He was particularly excited to be able to order something off the menu and we had talked the cafe up as a place where they cook special food etc. When we arrived and saw the menu I was so disappointed that there was nothing for him to order. Our waitress was understanding and we talked about the options for him but there was no dairy free bread and the only other option of hot chips were cooked in the same vats along with the fish (Another allergy for him). She allowed him to eat home prepared food although the menu said it was not allowed, which I might add was less of an allergy risk to any other customer that what was on the menu.
The kids area was great but understandably noisy and not very clean, food scraps (a real risk for our little man) were all over the floor inside the play area.
The positive was that the soy fluffy was made completely separate from the dairy one so it was safe, but when it came out it was covered in milk chocolate sprinkles!!
I think your website is a bit misleading, there is no way our son could have eaten there and I was not prepared to order food off the menu for him. In my opinion it is not an allergy friendly cafe and unfortunately will not go back again.
Now it’s husband’s turn.
I read with interest the review by Leigh who like me, packs food for the child with allergies on the off-chance that the cafe can’t be trusted. Debbie, McD’s is the only fast food outlet whose French fries I can feed my son as their cooking vats are solely used for cooking fries, not fish, not crustaceans, not mussels in egg batter, just potatoes. My allergy dietician has suggested McDonald’s French fries as being a safe treat for my son which we often take with us to eating establishments when there is nothing on the menu for him. As it turned out, there was nothing on the menu at the Library that my son could eat. I ordered the bangers and mash. I am not a deal voucher customer so when I pay a premium for food, I expect premium quality food. The surfaces of the tables were dirty, the floor had food scraps. Frankly I was disappointed.
My visit to your establishment moved me enough to register with MenuMania to write a review.
I will not be returning.
I don’t understand the service attitude of the staff here. Over a 7 year period of having coffee here I cannot count the times I have waited over 20 minutes for my coffee to arrive or how many times I have been forgotten about completely! I’m choosing to have coffee elsewhere now as it’s not enjoyable having to wait so long especially when you see staff chatting and not busy making coffees for customers who have just ordered.
Great customer service (lovely friendly and very attentive waiters), but food was pretty average in terms of taste. Good quantity though. Lovely coffee too.
I reckon this is a nice place to go to for families as the cafe has a bouncy castle, trampoline and a children’s slide outside… which makes it a very children-friendly place.
It’s potentially a great venue. The coffee and the hot chocolates are good. However, on a cold wet day did feel a bit drafty. Staff were friendly enough, but food could only be described as average.
We had heard that the Library Cafe was one of the best so decided to head there for lunch yesterday. My friends and I were highly disappointed with the quality of the meals for the price we were charged. The bangers and mash was mostly onion, the lamb wrap was practically lambless and the chicken breast on the chicken sandwich was not a whole chicken breast. Having run a cafe myself in the past I was shocked at how the waitress responded about our concern overy the food, she pretty much couldn’t have cared less! I walked out of what I thought should have been a pleasant Sunday lunch wondering how it got so many awards! Must be because there isn’t much competition in Onehunga. Prices need to reflect the quality and quantity of the food, should have got The takeaway Indian from dressmart!
What is up with this place!!!!! Ordered creamy mushrooms on toast waited for 20mins and got a plate of watery swamp coloured eck blehhhh!!!! My toast was soggy the “mushrooms” were awful bland no seasoning. My god look at your reviews. In the words of Gordon Ramsey “Shut it down”.
Your excuses are tired look at your reviews it says it all. Does’nt looklike you’ve made any improvements their the same complaints bad staff, bad food and bad attitude and you always trying to defend bad behaviour. Crucified I feel like I had my very very last supper there. Instead of wasting your time checking MenuMania and getting into debates spend more time looking after you business or even take a walk down the road and check your competition they seem to be getting it right.
I cant believe this cafe has won awards to be honest, as we go to brunch every Sunday and this has to be the worst in a long time. The clue should of been the couple leaving who were complaining, then we had the table behind us and unfortunately we were next. The mashed potato was lumpy, my eggs benedict was unappetising. Instead of sliced ham as per the menu, I got large carved chunks, and the muffin split was as white as the plate. Unfortunately not a good experience and when discussing issues with staff, they didnt seem that bothered.
Never written a review before but was am so disgruntled decided to make it a first. Visited this cafe as had enjoyed a good coffee a few days ago so recommended to family. Went with mother, sister and three children, one of whom has anaphylaxis (potentially fatal allergic responses to many foods). She can’t eat at any restaurant due to risk of cross contamination but since years has safely eaten at Mcdonalds. So, she came along with her Mcdonalds food.This has never been a problem at any cafe or restaurant. Ever. However, owner saw my mother with the Mcdonalds bag and blocked entrance and essentially removed her from premises. Refused to serve us as stated she also has a child with allegies/anaphylaxis so therefore has food for allergy sufferers. Tried very hard to explain that risk is too high but were not allowed in restaurant. Owner rude beyond belief to my mother.
Great venue for kids to play, very poor cooking skills in the kitchen, very very slow and sleepy service, down right rude manager.
I told the waitress I was unhappy with the quality of my pancakes ( they tasted repeatedly microwave reheated till stiff) and was told “you go tell the manager then” utterly shocked at her attitude i decided to leave the matter there. Next when the “manager” asked how was the food I politely mentioned the pancakes were inedible and was rudely told, NO, i was wrong she had ate one this morning so therefore the ones i received where good also, (Excellent logic?) it was my fault for not mentioning it when it was brought out. Apparently they were just thoroughly done on the grill however my husband who has worked as a chef for over ten years knew we were being lied to but stayed silent. Sorry but after waiting over 25 minutes for my meal i wasn’t about to ask them to take the whole thing away again just for the pancakes. No apology was given. I never asked for compensation or a refund or even anything else to eat, all i wanted was to bring to their attention that what they were serving was not pleasant.
She was so condescending and rude to me i felt like crying as she had embarrassed me in front of the whole table of guests. Why are such people even involved in customer service?
Truly a horrible experience.
Coffee is ok here, food a little disappointing. I think this is the kind of cafe you go to because its child friendly and are willing to settle in the food department.
The coffee is average and the building is lovely. The food is tasteless and overpriced, and the service is below average. I have been here three times; I keep on hoping because I love their concept, but am giving up now.
Dropped back in today for a light lunch after a walk from Onehunga to Pah Homestead return. Great service. The coffee was good and hot. And I really enjoyed the salmon quiche with salad – it hit the spot! Thank you.
Find the walk here: http://walksinauckland…
I’ve been to the Library Cafe a few times, for coffee which is great! However, the food is a disapointment. It is bland, tasteless and just not good enough when compared to the competition.
This cafe has so much potential – the location and staff are great, and the two rooms allow for child friendly and child free, while the outdoor space is great for us dogwalkers…
The menu and the food are not terrible, but for the long waits, should be amazing.
Get a new chef, and a new menu and you will be back on top!
The location and friendly atmosphere is superb and it is good to see their support of sustainability and organic ingredients. Considering their emphasis on environmental protection, I found it unnecessary to put a bouncy castle in the yard, which had the machine running the whole time – even without anyone jumping on it. The play area inside looks very nice. The best part were the generous opening hours – finally a place where you can get a coffee in the afternoon!
At my visit to the bathroom I was amazed once more how functionality can be ignored. The soap dispenser was almost unusably close to the sink – who comes up with these ideas?
I first reviewed this cafe as “I’ll never go back until I find out they have moved the furniture back to how it used to be because I found it difficult getting my double buggy in.” However I’ve been feeling terrible because this cafe has great coffee and slices and awesome resources to entertain children. I’ve otherwise always had a great experience here and the toys are awesome and the staff have always been friendly and welcoming. If you can make the access a bit better for a double buggy to make it near the toys I’d definitely be back. Access can often be an issue for those of us with twin babies who can only go somewhere if they can take a buggy in. Cheers.
Thanks again to The Library Cafe for a wonderful Sunday morning, we were so surprised and excited to not only be able to let our little Mr 2 out in a fully fenced play area while we had brunch (no more taking turns to watch him and entertain him!) but you had a trampoline and a bouncy castle! Coupled with great food and coffee – you are a parents god-send and sanity saver!! (oh and no surcharge EVER on public holidays!!)
We went there for brunch this morning. The cafe was only a third full, however after being seated we were left for 15 minutes – we couldn’t get anyone’s attention so went to someone cleaning a table and asked if we could order.
I ordered off the menu a ham and cheese sandwich on white bread for our six year old. When a wheat one arrived, again there was no service so I took it up to the counter, to the waitress that took our order and said ‘sorry, we had ordered white bread’. The sandwich was snatched out of my hand and I was told another one was coming. Half way through our meal a replacement sandwich arrived – but this time it was on wholegrain bread! Again I said we had ordered on white bread, and was told this was all they had. I explained my six year old only eats white bread, which is why we had specified white bread (that was listed as an option on the menu). The owner came over and said they would make a white bread sandwich. We finished our meals and coffees – no sandwich. While we were waiting to pay the owner came up and asked if we had received the sandwich – I said no, so she offered to make it for the car ride home. I said that would be fine, but told her about the no apology/ snatching incident earlier. She apologised, and turned to go into the kitchen – but she didn’t see my partner who saw her make a screwed up face about my comments to the other staff members. Really disappointing all in all. The brunch options are all over $20, so it’s not cheap, but the service certainly is. And yes, we were charged for the sandwich.
I took my 3 year old daughter and 6 year old niece who had a marvellous time on the bouncy castle! In between their bouncing, the girls enjoyed their steak and cheese pies, which had a lovely homemade quality to them.
The feijoa and apple smoothie was also a big hit with them.
The highlights for me included the flavoursome roast vege and couscous salad, which was perfectly un-heavy on the couscous, with a glass of riesling which I sipped slowly for an hour in the sunny, though rather windy picnic tables outside.
I know from past experience that this is a place to come when I’m not rushed… As the kitchen usually takes quite some time to get the meals and drinks out, which is what happened, but I was’nt fussed, and I appreciated the effort to get the kids fed first, bringing out the food well before mine was ready to serve. They also did an extra side of chopped up fruit for the kids at my request, which I asked for even though it was not part of the menu. They were very obliging with this.
Plus I was meal-checked at least twice, to see if everything was ok, so I felt looked after.
A delightful experience, and I’d love to go again soon.
PS: one tip if you’re sitting outside is to watch out for little buds falling off the splendid big pohutukawa tree onto your table/into your drink!!!!
I have been here a few times. The library building is beautiful – an awesome space. Play area for kids is good. Coffee is good. Not impressed with the food – too much pastry and bread and not enough fresh greens, for my tastes.
So why are there so many complaints about food and yet no real changes are made?? I have to agree with the majority here -the only good thing is the coffee. One male waiter is an absolute gem, the rest are always miserable and show it. Wish it was not so, but has to be said- the food is pretty bad and so is the service. Please take this on board and try harder … gorgeous old building has so much potential.
What a huge disappointment.
Was really looking forward to going after checking out the web site for me I was sold I had to go.
So after driving from Rotorua to Auckland I couldn’t have been more disappointed, it bears no resemblance to the web site the place is tired dirty and uninviting, the cabinet was borderline empty at 11am the coffee couldn’t have been further away from award winning if it tried, ripped and stained wallpaper, toilets were dirty and its promoted as a beautiful historic venue suitable for special functions and of course charge the earth for the privilege….
Come back to earth and take a long hard look at your business and smell the coffee and read the previous comments.
I am totally sure I won’t be back not even for a second chance.
Come on Debbie wake up and smell your coffe get a grip of your business or get the hell out you are obviously over it or incredibly thick skinned and oblivious to all these comments.
tried it again recently just to prove myself wrong still the same…
i cant believe it still the comments arnt improving come on debbie sell up and walk away this sadly obviously a wimsilcle dream to own a cafe but alas no idea
sell sell sell or walk away before theres nothing left to sell your cafe and lack of god knows what is frustrating the hell out of everyone even more so with your wishy washy excuses for what appears to be for the same reason everytime………
I wish I had read the reviews before agreeing for my sister-in-law to book this cafe for a very special family occasion – my mother’s 88th birthday. Some of the family drove for over 2 hours to be there. On arrival the staff did not seem to be aware of the booking even though over half the party were already seated. No table was organised to seat the booking for 12 so several had to sit at another table being left out of the general conversation – no effort made to rectify this. Very disorganised service, limited menu and meals expensive and served randomly with long delays for some to get food. The food was very average but the nasty taste left in the mouth was from being charged $1 for a box to take left over cake away after spending close to $300. No mention of this was made when requesting the box and paying the bill but the waitress would not leave the table to pack the cake until she had the $1. How many people have I told of our experience?
To the owner of this establishment I’m the customer that had the so called stiff porridge lol my partner wrote a previous review regarding the bright coloured eggs etc first point I’m a vegan my “dietary requirements” have been catered for by several other cafes eg Fusion,Revel,Dellows,Mellow etc and even my mother lol porridge can be cooked with water or soy milk to a very creamy consistency pretty basic (: secondly I worked at a organic supermarket for 10yrs that had a cafe and not at one time did I ever come across eggs that were tumeric coloured lol third and final point I’ve worked in Hospo for a long time and your “cafe” is one of the worst and most over priced places I’ve ever been to and your menu borders on the ridiculous. Just take the critcism and try to listen to your customers and don’t let your past triumphants cloud your reality.Word of mouth is very powerful.if I could give no stars I would but my review could’nt be submitted without one. (:
Would never go there again. I was shouted at by the cook who was complaining my baby (10 months old) was being too noisy. Does not suppose to be a “childfriendly” place?. After explaining the fact that she is a baby and you cannot always control their noise, the option I was given was to leave the place. Awesome customer service, is not it?. So do not bother going there if you have little ones, you might get the grumpy cook that day and have a very bad experience like me.
My partner and decided to go for breakfast after a long walk . We order drinks and breakfast. They arrived in time only to discover that the porridge was stiff as if a two year old would have made it and my scramble eggs on toast was a bright yellow “brighter than the sun”.
This is unacceptable and I’m sure many customers want answers as to why this establishment is so lacking in the basics of getting it right. Can someone explain why!!!!!!!, the chai was the only thing done well. Very shocking, especially when you pay good money, you expect your breakfast to be something that could be done at home or even better. MMM I think dairy free doesn’t mean stiff life porridge have you hear of water? come on!!!!!!! basics
If I could only write a two word review for this place, I would simply write, never again!I’ve never written a food review before, never felt the need and we’re not serious foodies, but this time was different, I felt passionate to write about The Library Cafe. Upon entry we waited at the counter to be told by a polite lady to take a menu and a seat which we did. It was nice to see they catered for children by providing a nice wee indoor and outdoor play area… Upon closer inspection of the dirty toys and large filthy blocks, we thought against it for our kids (it doesn’t take much to wipe down the toys that I’m sure many children touch each day). Service to take our orders was unacceptable and it wasn’t particularly busy. I don’t know if the chef was absent on the day we went, but I’m convinced my 1 and 3 year old could serve up something better tasting than what we had. I ordered the soup of the day, my partner the big breakfast and for the kids, pancakes with bacon and maple syrup. I couldn’t tell you what flavour my soup was, I think there was cauliflour in it though. It was just vile, I could not eat it. It was served with cold crust bread and two large knobs of cold butter. I ate the bread – just. I’m not sure how bacon and eggs could go too far wrong, or kid’s pancakes but wrong they did go… The bacon and eggs were okay, not the sides, the mushrooms were revolting, turn your stomach kind of revolting, the hash-browns (I think that’s what they were) likewise. I just don’t get how you can get these basics so badly wrong? My son’s pancakes just didn’t taste like pancakes, they were presented well and it was a good size, he ate them, I couldn’t (I was starving and hoping that maybe we could share them as I couldn’t eat my soup). The sweets we ate were mediocre at best. The coffee was surprisingly good. Has this place changed hands? Was the chef sick? How on earth did this place win awards for best cafe in Onehunga 2 or 3 years running? We seriously aren’t food snobs, but we do like to eat out. The Library Cafe oozes potential and has great ideas with organic choices, but seriously needs to pick up its game in food and service. Very disappointing and pretty hefty prices for such bad food. We won’t be recommending this place to our friends or on here. Consider yourself warned.
Its pluses are being well set-up for kids. But its minuses don’t make up for it. The menu has good options for allergies and gluten free diners but it’s overpriced and the service is slow. They haven’t mastered a lunch rush. Give it a wide berth as you can get better value elsewhere.
I’m delighted to reveal that I chose to give The Library Cafe another chance yesterday by inviting a colleague to meet me there for lunch although I conveyed in a previously review on this same website that it was highly unlikely that I’d revisit. Our lunchtime experience was an enjoyable experience and I especially relished the sumptuous Thai Lamb Salad, which was both unique and delectable. I was also impressed with the new menu, which offered a much wider variety of appealing choices than previous menus that I’ve seen. The service staff were pleasant and welcoming. Our only minor disappointment was that the Gluten Free Whitebait fritters was removed from the specials menu a few minutes before we ordered because it had sold out, which was a shame due to it being a particular favorite dish of my colleague’s.
Having worked in various restaurants and catered organic meals for outdoor events in the past, I can easily understand that food quality and service can be inconsistent at times, however much one may strive for consistency and delivery of excellence in cafe business endeavours. Thumbs up this time for the The Library Cafe!
Lovely building and great efforts to create a positive and healthy brand. Unfortunately the extremely long wait for orders to arrive and the poor attitude of staff lets it all down. Could be great, but needs a rapid and complete rethink on the staffing/service front.
After initially purchasing a deal voucher sold by them on a deals website we thought this is a great way to eat at an unknown restaurant/venue..Sadly we discovered that with the voucher deal you have limited choice from the Menu to redeem your voucher. Only the breakfast section and nothing else!. This was disappointing because we went for lunch. The kitchen staff could not keep up with the amount of patrons,the wait for food was 45min but we were advised upon arrival that this was the case. Drinks were slow to come and when the food finally arrived 3 out of the 4 dishes had to be sent back, either due to undercooked eggs, or overcooked food. Presentation and portions were disappointing. The Staff were all super friendly and polite and the interior is very nice. The menu in my opinion is also overpriced.
Unfortunately I wont be going back!
Extremely disappointing food and service – 45 min wait for 2 meals – we saw 3 groups of customers walk out not having eaten anything after waiting too long – seemed to be too many waitresses and not enough kitchen hands. When food did finally arrive the portions were very small and presentation was terrible as was food which had absolutely no flavour. Combinations of whiskey sauce for fish and rum sauce with prawns didn’t taste great at all. Sauces were also very runny so the salad was swamped in the sauce too.
Would definitely not recommend this cafe and will not be eating there again.
What a shame it used to be sooooo good.
Yummy food and great for the kids.
My two boys now know where we are off to as soon as we head to Onehunga for a much needed Mummy coffee. They even say “yay….the Library Cafe” – fluffys are the cheapest in town – the range of food for children is wide and good value for money (a whole bag of stuff – sandwich, fruit, drink and some other bits for about $5 or $6 – I don’t know how they make anything on it!!) my boys favourite is the anti-pasta plate! I rate this cafe as the best in town to go if you have kids and want some time out – indoor and outdoor activities, slide, playground – We give it the big thumbs up!! Jayne
This has to be the best child-friendly cafe in Auckland. I’m pretty sure I’ve tried them all, and value for money (great kids meals), staff, and activities for the kids are miles ahead of any others. In fact the activities provided for the kids are so good it can be a problem to keep them sitting to eat, which makes my coffee and food that bit more peaceful.
Having a separate area for people without kids is a great idea, stops me feeling I have to keep them super quiet. I also live their choice of organic foods, great bacon!
I bought my friends in for coffee and lunch the other day and now as I read the other reviews on this website, I wonder, what the heck these others are talking about.
Granted we went on a sunny day and everything seems so much nicer when the sun is shining, but I maintain my original comment.
The girls in the cafe are lovely, always smiling, I even thought I heard one break out in song!!! Great coffee, all the better for being organic too. Yes prices were a little higher than I expected being in Onehunga but was not disappointed at all, great value for money and DELICIOUS!! Best Eggs Benedict I have ever had and pancakes were not what I was expecting but yummy all the same!
One thing has to be said about this cafe. You haven’t lived until you’ve tried the caramel slice!
Went there with my kids after a voucher deal promotion.
Very very slow service.
Some things weren’t available.
My daughters very expensive meal was tiny and she walked away hungry and had to get something somewhere else.
Really expensive for what we got.
Supposedly got “free” coffees for waiting so long…. but noticed after that we got charged for them.
The food is not award winning, it is very mediocre.
Not recommended at all
Not bad, but not great, the egg’s benny was mediocre for what you pay, bit noisy, but great if you have kids who need a large play area. Otherwise friendly staff and quick service.
This was highly recommended by a relative and I was really sorry that she accompanied me for this very disappointing lunch. Service was terrible – they totally forgot my dad’s sausage roll, having left it languishing in the microwave. When it eventually arrived, soggy pastry and steaming interior, he asked for some sauce and was given, bizarrely, a small dish with balsamic vinegar. What the?
My cheese scone was entirely without taste, just a bread roll with a bit of grated cheese on top.
The baguette had rubbery cold fried egg and nasty bacon, gristly and not streaky.
Yes it’s child-friendly – as far as I’m concerned that’s a negative, especially in a venue like this where wooden floors = noise.
Being surprised at how long it took for our food to be served last Sunday evening and then even more surprised when most of the food we’d ordered was bland, lacking flavour and flair, along with each dish being such small quantities. We were disappointed with our dining experience at the Library Cafe. Having been impressed the last two times that my youngest daughter (21 years of age) and I ate brunch at the Library Cafe, I naturally proposed that a small group meet me for dinner this past Sunday evening, which was shortly after I arrived in the area from New Plymouth. Because our mutual needs for good value and delicious meals were poorly catered for, none of us are likely to visit the Library Cafe again.
We had emailed re making a booking for husband’s 50th for end of November 2009. No-one got back to us so we popped in a few days before. Luckily the person who hadn’t contacted us was onsite and she gave us a booking even though they were busy on the day we required. We booked for 12 and were not told it would be two separate tables (which we discovered when we turned up.) Some of our guests were late and approx 20mins after our start time they gave our table away without telling us first and when questioned advised that ‘was their policy’. The food was disappointing as it used to be amazing, the mince on toast would barely feed an adult, the child’s packed lunch was lacking – no spread in the ham sandwich and ham stacked to the front to look bigger than it was. All of our meals (8 in total) were disappointing. None of us will return. Real shame as it used to be great – maybe its something to do with them being a Bartercard member – keep prices up – but lower quality – I don’t know, but hope they take this on board.
Went for late lunch on Saturday 5th December 2009.
The Staff were truly great to deal with.
The food was OK – salad was a little tired. Disappointing as on previous occasions everything has been of a higher standard.
The order numbers were left on all the tables. Not sure how they can run their system this way.
Questionable visit and won’t rush back.
Front door tables look old and heavy. because its old, it looks dirty and uninviting.
Food are not as nice as before. did they changed chef? that’s why i rated 3 stars. before the foods are superb!
the new tables outside at back of the kids area. it just a nightmare. its so bouncy, can not put a tall glass of drink there.
lots new staffs, don’t know whats happening to the cafe. it seems old experience staffs left for some reasons.
The best kid friendly cafe in Onehunga . Lovely coffee and I enjoyed the mushroom risotto and breakfast options. The kids loved the play area especially the chalk wall.
Fantastic place to take the kids! Also has a great range of food. Lots of delicious gluten free options too. Definitely would recommend this cafe!
Delicious food in a fantastic, unique venue. Parents, bring your kids! Multiple play areas make this place an AWESOME cafe for Mums/Families to meet up, with the whole tribe in tow!
Gluten Free food options were outstanding. Loved my ‘stuffed red pepper’, and the delicious gluten free cheese scone.
The plastic slide & play/jungle gym out the back in the covered tent area is just perfect for our whole crazy tribe. Even in winter we found it warm enough to enjoy our coffees while the children squealed around on the play equipment & bean bags.
Fantastic. Can’t say enough great things about this place!
There were at least 3 staff helping behind the counter, and they were extremely helpful and professional
service was very poor, staff were rude, one girl behind the counter, tables were dirty
a no go place, food was nice tho
Debbie, Ross and the staff of The Library
On behalf of Christine, myself and a host of former Kodak employees I would like to extend my thanks to you all for an excellent function held on Thursday night. A great time was had by all and many complimented the food and the venue. Some even recalled its former days as an active library.
So Christine & I would like to thank you for assisting us in hosting the Kodak Family, which we found is still quite strong in New Zealand despite all the changes. Once we have recovered enough we were told that we should start thinking about the second reunion. No doubt because the first one was so successful, many are keen to have another. The success was not only due to Christine & I but also to The Library and its staff.
Thank you once again.
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