I have a hard time rating Brentwood one star. But, it's necessary to. Before I go into the complaints, I will compliment the expansive practice putting green and giant chipping area which allows shots of up to 70 yards.
1) Food is horrendous. All that needs to be said.
2) Driving range is quite small. When I was there, it was overcrowded so people had to wait to hit. After I had been on the range for only 3-5 minutes one of the employes told me that I had to leave so other people could practice. Not cool.
3) I was shocked at the poor quality of the greens. Infested with 5 varieties of poa annau, the greens were highly unpredictable and overall inconsistent.
Normally I would still give the club 3 or 4 stars. Nope!
4) The "water" and later hazards were basically dead grass trenches, or sections of overgrown grass. Ugly, pointless, and strange.
5) Weird black and white paint lines were present on several holes of the holes. ???
6) I got yelled at by a caddie from a different group because the caddie believed that I was breaking the rules. I kid you not, we had a 3 minute argument.
Do not return...
I had a much better time this year than last year because this year my boyfriend was able to come with me. I so wanted to give this night 4 stars but can't because the food just wasn't very good. I tried a little of everything at the 4th of July dinner and I liked to the roasted potatoes and vegetables the best. The steak was tough and the hot dry. (It didn't even come close to the Dodger dog at Dodger's Stadium.)
Note: This is a review of the food/restaurant part of this club, not the golf, pool, or other operations.
I am not a member but I have been to dinner here as a guest of a member over a dozen times in the past 3 years.
The Food and Service is consistently mediocre. Every so often the food or a particular dish is very good.
While my host has graciously covered the tab each time, and I am so grateful for that, prices are at the level of a Maestros or many other fine dining establishments but without the level of food or prep quality. 50 for a filet, 30 to 40 for fish, 20-30 for entree salads.
Which lead me to ask: "Why do the members put up with this quality?"
I guess it's hard to attract chef talent to a club restaurant operation that is open haphazardly, with irregular hours and a captive clientele. So instead, I can only guess that the club is loyal to their long term employees, that continue to skate by with food more suited for a Sizzler, than an upscale dining establishment.
As an example the other night the salmon was dried out--we cook far better at home, and the baked potato was poor quality and taste--it never had a chance. Another guest at the table told me afterwards that Whole Foods roasted chicken to go was 10 times better than the chicken she ordered here at the club. At these prices, the potato and chicken should be organic high quality and someone should know how to make fish and chicken. The Kale salad and dressing was very good and so was the matzoh ball soup. The side of veggies was overly oiled or buttered.
What they do best are the days when they have Salad Bar, because it requires minimal chef skill and staff ordering involvement.
The service I am less concerned with, but compared to another private club that I was at recently, the service here is almost as gruff as eating at a NYC deli if you know what I mean.
Example: Waiter comes over to take my order: "Sir, what do you want?" I start to tell him and he cuts me off and turns away to hastily yell instructions to another staff member. He turns back to me and he continues, "What?" After ordering, he yanks the menu from my hand and jumps to the next person at the table with the speed and motions of a timed contestant in a game show.
In sum, they are not scrutinizing the quality of the food they purchase and the prep. If this was a 10.00 a person diner, it's understandable, but at 60+ a head for the main dish and appetizer and desert, someone in control of the club needs to take some decisive action here and make significant improvements IMHO.
Now I am not a fan of golf as a general rule, but what I like about this place is that they left a narrow crushed-granite pedestrian path around the edge of their property which makes for excellent running (or stroller-pushing, so I have observed).
The distance around the country club is a little more than two miles, and when combined with the distance it takes to get there from where I live, adds up to the perfect post-work run for me. Judging from the dozens of other people I see jogging or stroller-ing past me, it appears as though I am not the only one who feels this way.
The path stretches from Burlingame Ave. to the west, runs eastward along San Vicente Blvd, ends for a bit on Gretna Green (on Sunday a.m. you can even run through the farmer's market if you dare!), and then snakes back along a really serene stretch of Montana Ave until you hit Burlingame.
Peering through the fence along the route, I don't usually see a lot of people out golfing... Maybe it's THAT exclusive of a country club. Just kidding... But I would venture to say that all of us who are on the outside of the fence are probably having a better time, or at the very least we're definitely getting more exercise! (Clearly, I am not the hugest fan of golf but I do like to run on golf course grass... This might be a story for another time.)