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Restaurants & Bars 3

Beware of Senses

Steven | Jun 6, 2004 09:14 AM

Last week, I had a friend visiting from Manhattan. He wanted to try one of Toronto's better restaurants. I chose Senses. What a mistake. We had reservations for 8:30pm. Our table was not ready when we arrived. We were told to wait in the lounge. A succession of different servers appeared periodically to apologize for the wait. Close to 45 minutes later, someone told us the party at "our" table would not be leaving any time soon. My dinner companion asked if there was another table, but the main dinning room was full. Instead, they gave us a table in a large, cavernous overflow room next to the kitchen in which there was only one other table of diners. It was impossible not to feel small and marginalized, cut off as we were from the main room. Claudio Aprile's food was good, but by the time it arrived -- we thought we had been forgotten (more apologies) -- we were hungry, grumpy, and what was supposed to be a special evening was mostly ruined. My guess as to what happened: the front of the house overbooked. They assumed the table would be gone by 8:30 -- we were told they had tickets to a show they decided to be late for, as if this was any of our business, or explained anything. Last time I checked, you either have reservations or you don't. For the excessive wait and our dashed expectations, we were offered nothing but meaningless apologies. There are several very good restaurants within a block or two of Senses. Next time, I will be going to one of them. I suggest others avoid disappointment and do the same.

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