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“Lousy food and service”
Review of Chattaway

Chattaway
Ranked #86 of 920 Restaurants in St. Petersburg
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: American, Seafood
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Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Families with children
Dining options: Lunch, Breakfast, Late Night, Dinner
Reviewed December 31, 2012

Celebrated a family member's birthday on a recent Saturday evening. We had a large group, but had called ahead to reserve seating. The outdoor seating is uncomfortable (picnic tables), especially if you're going to end up sitting for nearly three hours! It took 30 minutes for a waitress to even come take our order and then another hour for food to start showing up. The last of our group to be served didn't get their meals until they'd already been sitting there for 2-1/2 hours. Some people had left before we even got to cutting the birthday cake. The service was extremely slow, and the food orders often incorrect. The food itself was not good. I ordered black beans and rice, which arrived cold and without any rice in it. The chicken fingers and onion rings also were cold, lacking flavor, and the onion rings were so tough, I couldn't bite through them. Although the outdoor area is decorated with lights and gnomes and is supposed to be some sort of fairy garden, I guess, that effect was ruined by the fire pit they had going, which made our eyes burn and saturated all of us, all of our clothing, with the smell of smoke. To top it all off, they had a band playing that really wasn't good. I'm not complaining about the type of music they were playing, because it was a genre that I enjoy. They just aren't good at it, and the bass and the horn were so loud, we had people who had to keep getting up and walking outside of the courtyard to get away from it. Not to mention, it made it impossible for us to talk to each other. I would not recommend this restaurant to anyone.

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Thank Cynthia V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (192)
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131 - 135 of 192 reviews

Reviewed December 27, 2012

use to live in st pete and went once to twice a week for the club sandwich. Love the owners and staff who are Aweome... plus i traded plants with them

1  Thank jenna g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 16, 2012

We love going to the Chattaway on a beautiful day or evening. Patio dining is enchanting and whimsical with hidden gnomes and fairies all around. Lots of plants and a water fountain with a pond and sparkling lights in trees take you away from the daily grind. Seating is picnic tables for larger groups or patio tables for smaller groups. Many locals come here. They have accoustic entertainment and we love to go when Brian Leneschmidt plays...awesome guitar player! The staff is pet friendly and always bring out cool water for our dogs right away. I've been coming to the Chattaway for years to get the Chattaburger and fries and relax. This historical place is always full of surprises and we plan to enjoy it for many more years to come!

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Thank StPeteGirl33712
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2012

Chattaway has been a St. Pete tradition for over 90 years. Well unfortunately all good things must come to an end. I've been frequenting this place for over 7 years since moving about 5 minutes from here.
If you're looking for a cute one-of-a-kind dining experience this is still the place to visit. It's 90% outdoor patio seating provides a great atmosphere to sit outside and enjoy the beautiful Florida outdoors. The hand laid brick pavers, overhead canopies, bath tub planters and christmas style lighting throughout the trees provides a relaxing dining atmosphere. Large picnic tables allow you to enjoy the company of other diners. There is usually live entertainment and if it's cool outside the heaters and fire pits provide warmth.
Unfortunately the food and service have been going downhill over the past couple of years. I don't know if there's been a change of ownership or what. I know when we visited the menu had changed and the prices have increased ($8.59 for a single burger?). The style of fries has also changed. This place used to complete in Creative Loafing's best burger of the bay year after year. My burger was dry and was so small it was engulfed by the bun.
The service has never been really good but seems to have gotten worse. It took 15 minutes for our waiter to take our order after he'd passed by our table several times after bringing us our drinks. We had to stop him to take our order but he "didn't have his order pad with him" and disappeared for another 5 minutes. It took us almost an hour to get our food - menu basics: burger, wings, and chicken sandwich. When we asked what was taking so long we got the excuse that the kitchen was backed up even though the place was half empty for a Saturday night which is rare. I guess others have already figured this out. After finallly getting our food we asked for our check. Fifteen minutes later I had to stop another server to find our waiter as he was nowhere to be found. He came back and told me that he was tallying up our check (all checks are hand written and calculated here, and it is CASH only). Another 5 minutes passed yet still no server. Finally I was presented with our check but the check for the others in our party was still being calculated. I asked the server who was in charge. His response was "like a manager? noone really". That must explain it all right there. I finally cornered someone behind the bar who looked like she could take charge. At first she questioned if I was really waiting that long for my check until the other server confirmed it. She offered for us to only pay one of the checks which we gladly did and left frustrated.
If you're looking for a place to hang out and enjoy some drinks this might still be your place, but if you're looking for a good dining experience, you're only going to leave disappointed.

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1  Thank Craig M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2012

Nice, laid back place. Great burgers that rival many in the area. Service can be a little slow which is why I didn't give it a 5.

Thank jenfrost
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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