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Old 10-18-2008, 08:14 PM   #21
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GB has it nailed.If the restaurant can't make the space available within reasonable time of the time of the reservation, then they should not take the reservation. Whomever mentioned a deposit, I never heard of that, but, it closes the loop. A restaurateur also cannot afford to have a table for ten either waiting for guests that are late, or guests that show up with only 6 and say, sorry the others backed out. It really is a two way street and local experience plays a big role.

Just out of curiosity, what would any of have done after your stated wait time. If seating for ten is hard to get, going someplace else would be difficult.Just curious.

AC
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Old 10-18-2008, 08:16 PM   #22
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15-20 minutes wouldn't bother me much but it would probably irk some members of my family.
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Old 10-18-2008, 09:29 PM   #23
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I was a waitress for three years and if we had a big party to be sat at a certian time 20-30 minutes ahead of time we quit seating people where that party was going to be sat. Understanding someone might take a little longer I think 15-20 minute wait is long enough .
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Old 10-18-2008, 09:50 PM   #24
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Larry, where are you??? We are all waiting to hear how it turned out.

I agree with others who have said 15-20 minutes...although I have often been directed to the bar to wait for a "reserved" table and waited a half hour or more. This seems rather standard to me - the restaurant makes some extra $$$ in the bar. The last place in the states that asked me to wait in the bar, I declined (really don't drink much). This restaurant gave all the waiting hopeful diners a pager so that they would know when their table was ready. Yes, we had a reservation. Got seated 45 minutes later.
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Old 10-18-2008, 11:30 PM   #25
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Sorry guys/ gals, had a busy past few days. I wanted to get a few opinions about the wait before posting the story so i wouldnt look like a jackass ( which I seem to do in some of my posts).

Anyway, so here it goes....

My wife and I were invited to go out with people who she works with ( 10 of us in total).
As mentioned, reservations were made at least a week in advance for 7:30pm. Friday night.

Sorry to disappoint everyone, not a Chinese restaurant. No soy chicken. So, how can I top this ?? Where does everyone decide to take 2 vegetarians to dinner ( and yes we were the only vegetarians in the group of 10, and yes they knew). Well, a STEAK HOUSE!!!

Tellers Restaurant | Islip | Long Island | New York

So, we arrived at 7:25pm. A few other couples were there already, just waiting for one more couple. We let them know we were there and they said they were getting our table ready. Surely, they hustled us over to the bar while we were waiting ( my wife and I dont drink, but everyone else does so no problem). 15 minutes passed, then 30, then 45. Finally, they were finished " getting our table ready". Now 8:16pm im sitting in my seat. Knowing I was going to post this here, I kept accurate records of things .

Not only do they take called in reservations, but on their website, they have an online reservation page

Tellers An American Chophouse Restaurant, Islip - Make a Reservation

The place was very classy, well decorated. Actually, used to be a Bank, hence the name " Tellers".

We get the menu, and about 15 minutes later our wine/ drink order is taken. There is a guy there whose only job is to bring your wine and refill your glass when it is empty ( this was new to me , as I usually dont go to such fancy places) The second the guy saw your glass was empty, he rushed to the table and refilled the glass.

Another 15 minutes goes by and now our order is taken. Knowing there is nothing on the menu for us to eat ( I had looked at the menu online a few days prior), we decided to order a salad and backed potato.

Tellers Restaurant Islip Long Island New York
(click on the dinner menu)

When we told the waiter that we were only getting a salad and potato, the look on his face was priceless. He said " so, your going to eat nothing ?? just sit here and watch everyone else eat ?? Are you vegetarians? "

we told him yes, and he said " oh, u should tell me. My job is to give u something to eat. Now that I know, I can have them make u up a pasta with mixed vegetables, and a plate of grilled vegetables...." we told him to tell the chef to have fun with our dish, be creative , surprise us, as long as it is vegetarian .

A very nice bread basket was brought to the table with biscuits, poppy seed rolls, sour dough rolls, raising - nut bread ....

Appetizers and salads came. Good, but a salad is just a salad to me . Most of the others got oysters and baked clams....



Then the food came. I dont eat meat, but I could see that everything looked impressive. The rib eye cam with a rib attached to it the size of my arm. The cuts of meat were like 3 inches thick. Oh yeah, and the baked potato was great ( joke).

They did accommodate us with the pasta, grilled vegetables and all that .

Desert was cheese cake for us.

Anyway, other than the long wait, which i agree with most people here. 15 or 20 minutes, sure , thats part of the game. But 45 minutes when we had a reservation. And also when u have an online reservation on your website.... I think things can be done much better, although I do understand that they have to keep their tables filled. I agree with the deposit for the the reservation, that makes sense to me . Other than this though, the service was great. There wasnt one busboy parading around, but they all worked as a team. There was never a dirty plate, crumbs or anything left on the table. Water was always filled ( so was the wine). The courses were spaced nicely so it never seamed as if we were waiting. The food was good ( not great) but good. But considering we were vegetarians in a steak house, I think they did a great job.

But , my final comment is about the price . Im a practical person. sure it was a fancy place. Sure the menu had top quality items on it. But every appetizer was $10 +, the salads $10 +, the entre $35 - $65, the side dishes $10 + each , the desserts $10 +, So for me and my wife to go out for a pasta meal, was in the $150 - $200 range. Im sorry, but no one here will be able to rationalize this for me. Thats my weekly grocery budget, and I blew it in one meal The cheese cake was a cheese cake, the potato was , hmmm, a potato ( a $10 potato no less)

Good thing was ,that my wifes boss treated everyone,so didnt cost me a cent. Oh yeah, and we didnt leave until 11:30pm

I rarely go out to fancy places like this, let alone with a large group of people. Is it normal for dinner to take 4 hours ???
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Old 10-18-2008, 11:34 PM   #26
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One more thing, I figured im going to a nice classy place, so i showed up in a nice shirt and tie. I noticed many people there in t shirts and jeans. Is this how people go out to fancy places now ?? Just curious, im kind of a hermit crab, so this shocked me a little .
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Old 10-18-2008, 11:44 PM   #27
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larry i think you need to do one of two things. quit going out for dinner. or open your own place.

pretty much going out is a hassle for me, because of too few workers in the restaurants.
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Old 10-18-2008, 11:47 PM   #28
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personally, if i had the choice, i prefer to take in over dine out.
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Old 10-18-2008, 11:59 PM   #29
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Larry, thanks for the detailed report. I'm not sure what you do for a living (maybe you've said and I missed it) but you are a great observer and a good writer. My husband and I also avoid expensive eateries -we did go to the nicest restaurant in town a few weeks ago to celebrate DH's first Social Security check (yippee!), but our bill was still less than $100. There is too much obvious poverty around us to enjoy such extravagence. If we have extra money, it goes to needs in the community.

So I guess I am not the best person to comment on the price. Just know that I am with you 100%.
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Old 10-19-2008, 12:13 AM   #30
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Having been in the business most of my adult life and also being a restaurant owner.
99% of the places I worked were old school if a reservation was for a certain time we would wait 15 minutes and if it was a no show we were not out all that much. By the same token we seated all of our reservations on time. I ran the back of the house and my wife ran the front. rarely did we ever get jammed up, but I may add it takes years of doing the job to be really good at it to keep things moving along like they are supposed too
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