I had been looking forward to eating at Sage for months, and we had a Groupon to use there, so we finally went last night. And let me preface this by saying my husband and I never complain about restaurants. We are very easily pleased, and we both have been in the restaurant industry for over a decade.
So here goes - First we had drinks at the bar during happy hour, and the bartender was unfriendly, wouldn't make eye contact, and was talking on his phone for nearly the entire twenty minutes we sat at his bar. The drinks were fine (just wine and a mixed drink), but the rest of the bar experience was incredibly awkward. After he hung up the phone, we were trying to ask questions about the menu and about the restaurant, and he kept giving us simple, cold answers. Then, after giving up on conversation with him, he went outside to set the tables and left us with empty drink glasses and no bill.
Eventually he came back, and asked if we wanted to order dinner, and we said we would rather sit at a table. We cashed out and went to out table. Mind you, this entire time, there was only one other patron at the bar, and one other table in the restaurant.
At the table the server never asked if we had a Groupon or anything, so just before ordering, we told him we had one and he asked to see it. He instantly looked disappointed, and said "Well you can't order off of the regular menu." And took our menus and the Groupon voucher away, returning with two rumpled, paper menus with cheap appetizer and entree choices that I could have ordered from a pizzeria, not a fine French restaurant and oyster bar. There was nothing French on this "French" menu. The closest thing to French was the boeuf bourguignon, but since it is served "over linguine," I believe that disqualifies it from being French.
I asked to see the manager, because I was not expecting this sad little prix fixe menu. The manager, when she finally came out, clad in tee shirt and jeans, was also cold, defensive, and full of excuses. When I explained why I was disappointed, she proceeded to carry on about how hard her job is, explaining to every single of the 600 Groupon carriers that the prix fixe is the only option and that food costs are too high, blah, blah, blah. Then she went on defending her "French" menu with items such as chicken risotto, margherita pizza, and caprese salad, saying these are, indeed, French variations of the original. Are you kidding me?
After explaining to her that if I wanted Italian pizzeria food, I would have gone to my local pizzeria, I asked if we could just apply the Groupon money ($45 was what I paid) to regular menu items, and just use it for it's face value, like a gift card, and she said absolutely not. "We don't do that. It can only be used for the prix fixe. So why don't you just try our Mushroom Napolean" or whatever it was called (mushrooms, mozzerella, and tomato - basically a caprese salad). I said I would take the matter up with Groupon, and we left, without eating.
Well, the nightmare is not over yet! I realized after we were almost home, that the waiter never gave me my Groupon voucher back. So just now, I checked my Groupon account, and they cashed in my voucher! Sage Oyster Bar stole $45 from me!
Overall, all I can say is, NEVER EVER GO TO THIS RESTAURANT.
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