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Old 04-19-2008, 11:45 PM   #41
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I consider it bad service when a restaurant takes your reservation for a specific time and then you wait almost an hour to be seated. That happened to my family of 8 at a hibachi styled place. It was Valentine's Day and all the restaurants even the mediocre ones are packed on that day. That's why I made our reservations nearly 2 weeks in advanced and then double checked just to be sure that they still had them. They did. Also hibachi table places serve 8 at a time and only bring in new diners when the table is empty. Since their food is excellent and my granddaughter loves seeing the chef do his act and make fire that's where we wanted to go. We weren't the only ones who had had reservations and were made to wait for a long time. The reason we were given was that they had served people who had come in earlier off the streets and they were still here. Guess what? That only made the natives more hostile. Unfortunately, there was NO other restaurant that we could have gone to esp. with 8 hungry people. The management knew we were stuck and got an earful from all of us. We eventually got seated and the rest of the evening went great.
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Old 04-19-2008, 11:51 PM   #42
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I have been to restaurants as a walk in, seen empty tables, and told they were reserved. I guess they knew when to fill a table and when to hold it so those with reservations didn't have to wait.
If I had reservations and had to wait like that I would have given them an earful as well. After all isn't the point of making reservations to guarantee yourself a table at a certain time so you don't have to wait for an opening??

Feels kinda like car rentals, made a reservation walked in and was told they didn't have our car. Then they tell us a reservation isn't really a reservation and doesn't actually hold a car but rather just gives them an idea of when to stop renting cars....???
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Old 04-20-2008, 07:51 AM   #43
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Feels kinda like car rentals, made a reservation walked in and was told they didn't have our car. Then they tell us a reservation isn't really a reservation and doesn't actually hold a car but rather just gives them an idea of when to stop renting cars....???
This reminds me of the Seinfeld bit. "You know how to take the reservation. You just don't know how to hold the reservation.

My problem is that I like food too much so I am willing to go back to a restaurant if the service stinks if the food is good enough. I am not willing to not satisfy my want just to not give them the business they do not deserve. If the food is just OK then it is easier for me to not return, but if I really like the food then I will put up with a lot. I will make it known to management though so that they can correct it if they want.
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Old 04-20-2008, 04:16 PM   #44
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Surely bad service isn't confined to "stateside" And Ramsay's restaurant better have both good food and good service.
No it isn't, but this was my (limited) experience. Ramsays did. couldn't fasult the food & the serveice really was a credit - friendly & efficient (have done a review on my homepage). I realise Europe is different from the states & it really hurts to have to pay for something (bad service) which just isn't up to scratch. I have worked as a waitress amongst other things through university so I do understand both sides. I think we are lucky here as service & taxes are included in the price, which I suppose is as broad is as long, but i don't feel obliged to leave extra & complain if necessary, which even in France is listened to!
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Old 04-20-2008, 10:23 PM   #45
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This reminds me of the Seinfeld bit. "You know how to take the reservation. You just don't know how to hold the reservation.


I Do remember that episode, now that you have reminded me of it!
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Old 04-20-2008, 11:29 PM   #46
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As many have said, I question why the service was poor. If it is on the server, it shows in the tip. If it is on the kitchen staff, I'm not afraid to ask the server to speak to the manager regarding the issue. For example, I got a steak at a non-steakhouse (a mistakem I know, but regardless) and had asked for medium to medium well. It came out looking nicely cooked, but when I cut into it, it was raw. Server's problems? Not at all. She saw my disgust and came over to see what was wrong. She saw the meat essentially bleeding and commented how that's not near medium well. She took it back (I had eaten the rest of the plate, veggies and pilaf), blasted into the kitchen and hollered "Who the *BLEEP* is responsible for this?!?" I was impressed with that. So the manager comes over and offers a dollar off. I couldn't believe it. The veggies and pilaf I did eat weren't worth the dollar taken off, let alone the steak I never touched. For some reason, the manager was called away for something else, so I was left standing waiting to pay. My server saw this and came up to ring us out. She asked what the manager had said, so I honestly answered a buck off. The server was appalled, and took that meal off the bill completely. I thanked her for her kindness, and on top of the tip she had already earned, tipped her the full value of the meal she took off the bill.
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Old 04-21-2008, 02:06 AM   #47
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Bigdog, I'm with you..we are the customer!
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Old 04-21-2008, 05:12 AM   #48
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There is a difference between bad service and trouble in the kitchen. It's usually easy enough to tell where the problems originate.
To me, good service means you are seated, given menus and then given a few moments to look at it. The server should return within 10 minutes, depending on the establishment. Beverages should arrive during that time, or very very soon after that. A waitperson can be friendly without being overly familiar. Once the order is taken, the time it takes to arrive is important. If it arrives cold, it's the servers fault. If it's overcooked or undercooked, that is a kitchen problem. If it's wrong, (wrong side, wrong sauce) that's a wait/server error. If something is missing, that's also a wait/server problem. How any errors are handled are a determining factor for the amount of tip. The waiter should return at least once, and twice if possible during the meal. Plates should be removed once empty. You shouldn't have to hunt your cheque down.

I realize that dining establishments can be understaffed, but, frankly, that's not my problem. If an establishment cannot handle another table or another ticket, they shouldn't seat me. If they seat me, I'm entitled to a pleasant dining experience complete with professional service. That's what I'm paying for. If I bought a dress that had one seam left unsewn, I wouldn't keep it, opting to sew it myself, because the factory where it was made was understaffed.
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Old 04-21-2008, 05:21 AM   #49
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...I realize that dining establishments can be understaffed, but, frankly, that's not my problem. If an establishment cannot handle another table or another ticket, they shouldn't seat me. If they seat me, I'm entitled to a pleasant dining experience complete with professional service. That's what I'm paying for. If I bought a dress that had one seam left unsewn, I wouldn't keep it, opting to sew it myself, because the factory where it was made was understaffed.
I hadn't really thought about it that way, but you're right. I love the analogy!

Barbara
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Old 04-21-2008, 01:21 PM   #50
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jumping in late...

I usually over tip if the server is earnest and tries. I know too many people in the service industry not to understand the importance of tips.

If they are incompotent but trying I am ok. If they are rude and seem bothered to do thier job this makes me angry.

There are bartenders and servers in many of the "hipster" bars and cafes in my area who seem to think their job description is to chat with their friends and pour you a beer or take an order when they get around to it if they feel like it. This makes me crazy... you are WORKING at a JOB do it. This is when my tips start getting small.
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