Restaurants & Bars


I just have to say this: I hate Rocco's on Bleecker


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I just have to say this: I hate Rocco's on Bleecker

vvvindaloo | | Oct 18, 2007 12:12 PM

For years, I have sucked it up and forked over $$ for the occasional mediocre croissant and "cannoli" there, mostly when I found myself in need and short on time/other options. I have also tolerated the horrendous (and ignorant) service, telling myself that it never pays to make a fuss (or enemies) in one's own neighborhood. I was entertaining a couple of out-of-town friends the other night, and we decided to pick up some late-night dessert on our way back to my place. We ended up at Rocco's, where they chose an assortment of mini pastries and cannoli. I held my tongue as the counter "server" distractedly took their order, dropping the pieces into the pastry box. I have never experienced what I would call efficient or professional service at Rocco's, so I was not surprised. I did get annoyed, however, when the "server" absent-mindedly put chocolate-flavored filling into the "cannoli" shells. I stepped in and reminded him what our order was. He took his sweet time filling the new shells, and we then stepped over to the cashier. There were at least three other customers standing there waiting to pay/order while several employees chatted among themselves. One woman actually asked the ringleader (I won't call him a real manager) if she could be helped and was ignored. Meanwhile, after telling us our total price and seeing me with $$ in hand, our server stopped to answer the phone in the middle of tieing the bakery ribbon. I swear, there were at least three other useless-looking people standing by who could have answered it, but he chose to hold us up. We stood there, money-in-hand, glaring at him for a full three or four minutes, while he blabbed to someone in Spanish, who apparently was not a customer, but merely looking to speak with an employee there. Across a two-foot counter, we three customers (plus other frustrated would-be customers) stared at him in disbelief, while all of us were ignored. The "manager" tells one of the idle female employees to help out the other customers. Our server walks away with the phone, presumably to find whomever the caller was looking for. Had I been alone, I would have left at this point. But I did not want to disappoint my friends. I call out, to no one in particlar, "Can we pay, please?", and the pretend manager comes over and realizes (I thought) that something was amiss. He then very casually and SLOWLY goes over to get our original server to come back and finish helping us (meanwhile, he is doing NOTHING at all but joking around with employees). The total was $8.50. I handed the server (he is still on the phone) a $10. He comes back from the register, sets the bag on the counter, and holds out a $1 bill. I realize that the rest of my change is not forthcoming. I am seriously steamed at this point, and I interrupt his conversation: "That must be a very important phone call". He looks up and answers, arrogantly, "Oh, yes, very important". The fake manager come over and asks what the problem is, and one of the other employees motions to me and quietly says something to him. He hands me the coins and says "OK?", and walks away, amused, muttering something about me " really missing (my) fifty cents." I lost my cool at that point, and challenged him to repeat what he just said. He backed away, denying it. I have always known that these people were arrogant and coasting on a long-undeserved reputation (there is not ONE person working in this tourist trap who knows anything at all about Italian pastry). But this was the last straw. I have mentioned my opinion on their products several times, and I maintain (objectively) that their "cannoli", while passable, are not what they should be. And they are the best thing that "Rocco's" makes. I have spent my last cent there.

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