Monday, December 3, 2012

Lighthouse Lacks Shine

“I always go in to every restaurant for the first time wanting to like it.” So said well-regarded Triangle-based restaurant critic Greg Cox, and I think this is a good way to approach eating out.

It’s with this sentiment in mind that I visited LighthouseDeli & Grill in Apex. After entering the front door, I was surprised to discover that the deli had merged with an adjoining establishment formerly known as Paradise Pizza. Pie by the slice is available at lunchtime, although the choices I saw did not look remotely appetizing. Instead, I ordered a Reuben sandwich on white (since I hate rye) with a side of potato salad and dill pickle.

Lighthouse serves quality Boar’s Head meats, so I was relatively assured that the sandwich would hit the mark. It did. Flawlessly prepared corned beef was augmented by melted Swiss cheese, sauerkraut and Thousand Island dressing. The potato salad, however, wasn’t particularly memorable.

Now for the constructive criticism. You would think that a deli sandwich, side and soft drink at a counter-service restaurant would cost less than $10, right? You would be wrong. My order came in at just under $11. Thankfully, no tip was required.

Ambiance? Let’s just say that the Biscuitville in Cary gets four stars compared to Lighthouse. Stark lighting, drab walls and a mishmash arrangement of booths and tables gave me flashbacks to my junior high cafeteria days. Perhaps some art hanging on the walls or live plants would help liven up an otherwise utilitarian feel.

Service at Lighthouse was a shade beyond perfunctory, and it’s hard to put a finger on why this little eatery with so much potential lacks any perceptible soul. It’s possible that I had my first and last visit. I really did want to like it.

Lighthouse Deli & Grill on Urbanspoon

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