I've been to lots of restaurants in my time, but I have only ever had cause to walk out of one of them until today.
My wife, in-laws, and I visited De Fontein for lunch, after a great time at Kelly Tarlton's. We arrived at half past two, when the restaurant was busy, if not quite full. We ordered drinks and some mains, and were very excited given how delicious everything sounded. Unfortunately we were in for a nasty shock.
20 minutes later we still hadn't received our drinks. We asked the waiter, who was very apologetic, and went to sort things out. Sadly when he returned with the drinks, he had mixed up a Leffe Brune for a Hoegaarden, which are two very different sounding and looking beverages. But no matter, the mistake was rectified quickly.
45 minutes later there was still no sign of our food. When we asked the waiter he apologised, and said the kitchen were aware of the delay (why hadn't they spoken to us about it before), and promised to have our food with us in '5-10 minutes'. 10 minutes later there was still no food, so, thoroughly fed up, we decided to walk out. On the way we met the manager, who apologised, but said our food would still be another '8 minutes away'. By then it had become clear that we were going to die of old age before we got anything to eat, so we decided that enough was enough.
To be fair the manager allowed us to leave without paying for our drinks, which was a nice touch.
However, the 'service' we experienced can only be described as shambolic. Admittedly I don't have any experience of the restaurant industry, but let me offer this piece of advice to the powers-that-be at De Fontein. If customers are asking where their food is after a ridiculously long wait, you need to rush it out as quickly as possible. Not try to fob them off with 'it will be another 10 minutes' on two consecutive occasions. That's the kind of crap that gets you terrible reviews on Trip Advisor.
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