After three visits to Budapest in the last three months I am now in a clearer position to provide a balanced review. I have seen many people complaining about the lack of (or poor) customer service here, but to be frank this is Budapest and not Bangkok where a customer really does feel like a king. I purchased a pair of shoes and to be honest, the assistant seemed more annoyed at me disturbing her texting or updating her Facebook account on the mobile than actually making a sale. In fact it felt like she had given me the items for free and at the end of the transaction not even a thank you she just put the shoes in the bag and got back to her mobile. So welcome to Budapest, just don’t take it personally.
I have tried several eating establishments and this was the most expensive place that my wife and had dinner or any meal during this visit. We only picked Boom Brass, as we passed in the day to people watch and the menu looked okay. Considering the price we paid, which was not short of London prices, I would have expected much more for my money and when I say “more” I mean a far better experience.
However, this is Hungary and judging from what I have seen, during my visits the service culture is very hit or miss here, basically a few people have it - but many simply do not. The person who initially greeted, door girl / woman us on arrival at the restaurant gave us a rubbish table, away from the road to people watch, apparently the others were reserved despite many of these not being used whilst we were having our meal. About twenty minutes later two American girls asked the same question about the tables and were also told they were they were reserved – I am not sure what that was about. Either tables are available or they are not as they did not have any reserve sign on them.
However, the food was very average basically a “Tex- Mex” affair, nothing exceptional in fact my wife ordered her steak medium but had to ask for it to be cooked more, which threw the staff for some reason who seemed annoyed by this request. My wife wasn’t keen on the service because she asked where the soft drinks were in the menu, and instead of pointing out the drinks the waiter barked out: “cola, fanta, juice what you want?”
My other gripe is considering this had been a hot day, in fact a very hot day the waiting staff were not exactly coming around to ask if we needed more drinks, I had to practically beg them for another drink. My second drink was a Pina Colada, complete with ice cubes, and resembling nothing like the drink pictured in the menu. The waiter told me that is how Pina Coladas are served in Hungary, although I did wonder what 007 would have ended up with if he had ordered his traditional Martini shaken and not stirred. For the record Pina Colada is made with crushed ice not ice cubes.
The food was average, because after all a burger is a burger and a steak is a steak, and as my wife informed me this was not Kobe Beef; but we did have to send my wife’s steak back to be cooked more. However, given that we had paid £30 a head, which included a ginger ala, Cappy juice and Pina Colada I would have expected much better and could have found better in value and quality in London. If you are paying this type of money you expect something more for your return. Both of us were very disappointed with the overall experience.
Even at the end it took three requests from three different staff members and ten minutes to finally get the bill, honestly all which is a first for me. Even worse considering the restaurant was not that busy, hence the table that were “apparently” reserved were still empty on our departure.
Basically Boom & Brass is nothing that exceptional the food is average and service poor, but even if the food was much better it would have to be something else, to get over the prices and poor service. About one of the few things it has going for it is the location, and that is only when the weather is good.
This is only worth three stars from me.
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