Restaurants & Bars

San Diego

Also disappointed in The Linkery


More from Restaurants & Bars

Restaurants & Bars San Diego

Also disappointed in The Linkery

howstheservice | | May 28, 2008 01:16 PM

Clueless hostess, small portions, loud dining room, $4 for 8 oz of Dr. Pepper? and an owner who's attitude was basically, Go somewhere else!
OK I get it, you want to offer, good quality locally grown and raised food. Would it kill you to put some more potatoes on the side of a dish you're charging $19.50? Why would you offer a soft drink that is only available from Texas and charge more for it than most places charge for a pint of beer? and when a paying customer raises some valid points why would you choose to ignore all of them and say that there are a lot of other restaurants out there, you should be able to find one that makes you happy?
I wanted to like this neighborhood joint, but never again!

As a neighbor, I was really excited to try the new location. I admit, I had
never been to the original location although I had intended to many times, but
never made it.

As a newbie, I was not sure what to expect. When we arrived Friday evening, they
looked pretty busy, but we were able to get a parking spot right in front of the
door and we saw that there were at least two empty tables in the dining room.
When we came in, we were told there would be a wait, and asked to give our name.

After about 40 minutes a hostess came and told
us there was a bar table available if we wanted to sit there or it should be
just a few minutes for a regular height table. My partner had spinal surgery
just over a year ago and still has some nerve damage so we opted to wait for the
regular height table.

The hostess moved on to the next name on the wait list and as she was taking
them to the bar height table , they asked if they could have the open, regular
height table that had been empty since we arrived and she said yes! We couldn't
have had that table? Any other number of people waiting before us couldn't have
had that table? Poor customer relations! I don't care how good your food is, if
you treat people that poorly, it gets noticed.

After about 20 more minutes we were lead to a table on the far side of the
dining room, two small tables pushed together for a four topper. When the
waitress finally came by, she informed us of all the things you had already run
out of, namely three of the offered sausages and the fish. Since what I was most
interested in was trying two of the missing sausages, it would have been nice to
know this before waiting that long for a table. All you had to do was post it on
the window where you were writing down names for seating--"Sorry, but we have
run out of x, y, and z" Easy enough, I could then decide if I wanted to come
back another day or try something different.

I opted for the choucroute with two links and my partner ordered the pork chop.
We appreciate good food and enjoy eating out often. The presentation of both
these plates was lackluster at best. The sauerkraut was flattened out, and kind
of camouflaged by the melted cheese and was not too appealing in appearance. My
partner's pork chop was unrecognizable as a pork chop. It was explained to us
that the meat had a lot of fat and one should expect to have each bite be half
fat and half meat, but she did not explain what to do about all the
gristle/connective tissue! The small portion of potatoes was good flavored but
seemed a little skimpy for a $19.50 dish.

Speaking of price, I can't let pass the cost of a soft drink--$4 for 8 oz of Dr.
Pepper, that didn't even fill the glass?! Which came without ice, I might add. I
almost never drink alcohol when out as I am the driver, so I usually get a soft
drink. I have never been charged that much for a single soft drink, especially
in a place that likes to characterize itself as a neighborhood restaurant. You
make a big deal that all your meat and produce is locally grown, yet you buy
your Dr. Pepper from a lone bottling plant in Texas?! Does that make sense? To
add insult to injury, the second one also cost $4 for a grand total of $8 for 16
oz of soda-- nice mark up! Makes me wonder how little the pork chop cost you if
you were charging that kind of mark up on soda! You have a bar, you have the
system, get some tanks and have soda on tap and don't charge an arm and a leg
and offer gratis refills. No one will think any less of you.

Just before our food came, the hostess came by and took one of the tables we
were sitting at to make a big table for a larger group, rather than take the
empty table across the aisle from us!? Guess you didn't want to miss the
opportunity to fill that table as well, even though it was close to 10pm and
that table had sat empty for 10 minutes already. For whatever reason she thought
it was better to make us uncomfortable rather than take that other table.

The dining room is very loud as there are no soft surfaces to absorb the sound,
so we had to listen to our next door table complain about how little meat there
was on their $88 goat! Maybe some cloth baffles in the air, some art on the
walls, perhaps some curtains, etc. would help to dampen the noise problem.

Since I work as a retail consultant, I realize I have high expectations for
service and atmosphere, but I also know how easy it is to get the details right
and provide a satisfactory experience.