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Old 06-30-2008, 02:49 PM   #1
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Returning our food at a restaurant, How would you handle this ??

Over the weekend, my wife and I were in a restaurant in a large casino. It was more of a Chinese food court kind of a thing than an actual sit down restaurant. You take a menue, make your selection, tell the person at the register what u want, they send it to the back, where all the cooks are on display, then when your order # appears on a screen, u go and get your dinner, and sit down. Although it is casual, it is within the casino, and is actually very nice ( not like a mall food court)

Anyway, now that you have the image. Both my wife and I are vegetarians. We ordered the stir fried chinese broccoli, and the soy chicken. Neither had a description underneath their title. We placed our order, waited for our number to appear , then got our food and sat down.

When we opened the dinners ( they were in take out dishes), we noticed it was real chicken, not soy chicken as we expected. My wife brought it to the woman who took our order, and pointed out that it was not soy chicken , but real chicken, and that we were vegetarians and would not eat this ( very politely ). There was definitely a language barrier, so the woman got another woman ( who i assume was the manager) and my wife explained the situation to her. The woman ( still a language barrier, but not as bad) said that it was soy chicken, so my wife said, no it is real chicken, like the bird. the woman said, no no, it is soy sauce chicken, and that we should try it, because it is veyr good. My wife continued to explain that we are vegetarians and would not eat this ( still very politely). Bottom line, is that the woman refused to take it back. My wife didnt want to take it to the next level, because it was a ' mini vacation' and it wasnt worth getting bent out of shape for $8.50 dish. But its the principle.

Sure, in hind-site, we should have asked them to describe the dish before we placed our order, but on the other hand, it should have been clearly presented on the menu for us to see. I feel there is no real wrong or right here, but the right thing to do would have been to let us reorder something that we eat.

We ate our one dish ( which was very good) . Left disappointed, then went to Ben and Jerry's and woofed down some cherry garcia on a cone.

So, do u think its worth writing a letter ? or should i just be more careful next time ( which i usually am, but i thought this was a no brainer).

PS. To add insult to injury, we lost at the casino also.

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Old 06-30-2008, 02:54 PM   #2
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I would have handled it the same way you and DW did. It isn't worth making a big deal about when, with the language issue, they probably wouldn't have understood anyway. Sorry you lost at the tables, too.
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Old 06-30-2008, 02:58 PM   #3
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It's quite common to call a chicken dish flavored with soy sauce "soy chicken." IMO that name was not misleading, especially in a Chinese restaurant. And especially if the word "chicken" was not in quotes.

I think it would have been quite unusual for a restaurant like that to serve "chicken" made from soybeans.

I'd let it pass, myself.
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:00 PM   #4
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Oh dear, how miserable for you both.

I have to say though, I would have assumed the soy chicken was real chicken in a soy sauce of some sort.
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:03 PM   #5
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I have to say though, I would have assumed the soy chicken was real chicken in a soy sauce of some sort.
Me too. Maybe you should have asked for a clarification before you ordered.
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:06 PM   #6
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In my opinion the restaurant did nothing wrong. Soy Chicken is the name of a dish. Had I seen that on the menu I would have absolutely thought of soy sauce and real chicken.

Because you and your wife are vegetarians my guess is that you saw soy and automatically thought that the chicken was made of soy. This is not your fault either, but it does not make it the restaurants fault.

If it were my restaurant I would have taken the dish back and replaced it with something else that you wanted, but I do not think that this restaurant should have done that unless they felt like it. It was a misunderstanding and really no one is too blame.

I would chalk it up to a learning experience and next time you will probably question the ingredients a little harder.
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:17 PM   #7
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I agree, and thats what we did. But on the other hand , being a vegetarian, and seeing it through a vegetarians eyes, it is equally as common to see it listed as soy chicken, when they mean vegetarian also. They did not have a specific vegetarian menu, as many other restaurants do, and im not sure if they did or didnt have any other 'soy' selections there that were vegetarian that would have made it even more misleading.

Usually we are more careful, this time we wernt and just added the $8.50 to our losings. Its just one of those annoying things, that I know I would have handled differently if it were my business. Especially since it is a Huge casino ( not a privately owned restaurant) that is making millions and millions from the gambling, and just have these restaurants there so the gamblers dont have to stray too far from the tables.

Looking at it from a business point of view, if they keep me happy, the longer I will stay , and statistically, the more $$ I will lose at the tables. Im sure the manager wasnt thinking along those lines, since they have their quota's or whatever. But i think it would have been in the overall casino's best interest to just make things good.

Hmmm

Im now wondering if the Steamed Chicken Feet with Beans were also not vegetarian???
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:23 PM   #8
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When I red "soy chicken" I assumed just that. That it was going to be some kind of (fried or boiled) chicken with something that is made out of soy. The thought of it being actual vegetarian dish did not even occur in mine mind. I'm sure the people in the restaurant felt the same way.
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
I agree, and thats what we did. But on the other hand , being a vegetarian, and seeing it through a vegetarians eyes, it is equally as common to see it listed as soy chicken, when they mean vegetarian also. They did not have a specific vegetarian menu, as many other restaurants do, and im not sure if they did or didnt have any other 'soy' selections there that were vegetarian that would have made it even more misleading.
.....

Hmmm

Im now wondering if the Steamed Chicken Feet with Beans were also not vegetarian???
chicken feet!

I think what those of us who have 'dietry requirements' need to rememebr always is there are always going to be more of those who'll eat anything than those who have any 'restriction' or particular requirement. I think in times of any lack of clarity its OUR responsibilty to do the checking, not the restaurant's.

Well done you for being sensible about it, I guess now its a reminder to everyone to check, check and double check if its a choice that means you might not be able to eat it!
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Old 06-30-2008, 03:25 PM   #10
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P.S. I did not even red GB post before posting mine, and actually haven’t been I a Chinese restaurant for quite a while. Having special need diet I make double sure that what is being served is something I can eat.
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