Starts off with a bang, ends with a whimper.
Camden, NJ doesn’t exactly have a positive connotation for most of South Jersey. I’ve worked there for several years, however, and have managed to find some good restaurants on our side of the Ben Franklin Bridge. The Victor’s Pub is located in the Victor Building at the corner of Market Street and Delaware Ave. Victor’s offers beautiful views of the waterfront and Philadelphia skyline (especially on sunny days, which, yes, happen in Camden, too) in an industrial-type atmosphere.
Victor’s has a sizable “racetrack” bar on one side of the restaurant with a various selection of domestic and imported beers and cocktails (including Victor’s signature take on a Long Island Ice Tea called the Long Nipper Sipper Tea – I’ve never had it myself, but I’ve heard from coworkers that it’s good. As a fun fact, Nipper is the RCA logo dog and the Victor Building used to be part of the massive RCA complex that once inhabited this section of the Camden waterfront. Now you credit Chewru with this interesting local history lesson – tell your friends!).
The other side of the restaurant is all wooden tables and chairs. There are plenty of large plasma televisions around the restaurant set to various stations which can be good if you’re interested in a game or bad if you’re trying to keep your boyfriend’s attention (ahem, Guru). I’ve never been for dinner, but the dining area can get crowded at lunchtime (especially in the summer since it’s close to the aquarium, Campbell’s field, and the Rugters Camden campus).
Guru ordered the traditional turkey club on this particular visit (we’ve been a few times before, but not for reviewing purposes). He gets it on wheat toast and is always pleased with the portion size. The turkey is roasted turkey breast and not the typical lunch meat variety. I ordered the Victor club also on wheat toast and was not quite as pleased. Although the portion size was the same as Guru’s, my club included a LOT of bacon. Since bacon is the only “meat” ingredient in the club, I was glad I didn’t get shortchanged, but there was still so much stuffed in that I had to pick some bacon out before I could fit it in my mouth. Otherwise, the sandwich was very good. Guru and I also split a bowl of their Victor potato soup. The soup was topped with a few bacon bits and some chives. It was very rich and creamy, although we wished it was served slightly hotter. Both clubs came with a bag of quality kettle-cooked potato chips (topped with sea salt), pickles, and cole slaw. The fries at Victor’s have been good in the past, but they have to be ordered as an extra and are not included with most meals. Guru thought their cole slaw was a bit on the spicy side and prefers the finely-chopped, neutral KFC-style variety.
Our waitress was friendly enough and took our order promptly. Our food was served lightening fast. Guru and I have noticed a pattern to the service at Victor’s: orders are taken and food is served quickly, but, after that, it’s a crapshoot. In most of our experiences, no one asks how the food is once you’ve received it and you have to hassle your server to get the bill or a water refill. We’ve had to wait very long times to get our bill settled which may be okay during a relaxed dinner, but is not acceptable during a lunch hour.
Overall, Victor’s is a restaurant with good, albeit slightly overpriced, food, but still has room for improvement in service. With the convenience of the location and nice interior atmosphere, I wish it were more reasonably priced. The lunch specials are usually very good deals, but not always what you’re in the mood for. I’ve had some food in the past I wasn’t crazy about (most notably a very dry steak sandwich). Despite the drawbacks, Victor’s Pub has enough appeal to keep me coming back for lunch every couple of weeks.
- Unique atmosphere
- Good food
- Large portions
- Get served your food very fast
- A little pricey for daily lunches
- Service gets shaky after you get your food (hard to get drink refills, no checks to make sure food is okay, etc.)
Guru’s Score: 3.4
Autumn’s Score: 3.6
Average Score: 3.5 Chews
Subjective Review: Good for an occasional lunch splurge!
Have you been to The Victor’s Pub? If so, please add your rating!
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