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“Decent food, terrible service!”
Review of Steak 'n Shake

Steak 'n Shake
Ranked #89 of 149 Restaurants in Carrollton
Cuisines: American, Fast Food
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Dinner, Late Night, Breakfast, Lunch, Seating, Takeout, Waitstaff
Description: Steak ‘n Shake is a classic American brand famous for the Original Steakburger™ and hand-dipped Milk Shakes. Stop in today for breakfast, lunch, dinner or late night. Dine in, drive thru or carryout.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
71 reviews
55 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Decent food, terrible service!”
Reviewed November 16, 2013 via mobile

We love Steak n Shake normally but this location has terrible service. The food was pretty good except for the cheese on our cheese fries was ice cold. Service was not only unbelievably slow but also bad. The server never even checked on us one time, only came to the table to take our order and deliver the food. The strange thing is there was plenty of staff working so there really was no reason for slow/bad service especially since the restaurant wasn't even crowded. Upon leaving I told the supervisor that the service was slow/bad, her response was I know and I'm sorry... Wow, if you know then you need to fix the problem!! We will not return to this location.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank prettypinkmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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54 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Livingston, Alabama, United States
Level Contributor
13 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Overrated Hamburger Joint”
Reviewed October 17, 2013

I went to this fast food place for what my buddies said were really great hamburgers, but only to find that they were not that good tasting, and the iced tea was watered down. I'd rather eat at Hardees.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
Thank wechbe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
“Good food.....slow”
Reviewed October 5, 2013

This place used to have great service to go along with the food, but the last few times we've been it has degraded to an almost unacceptable level. There seems to be plenty of staff and average customer traffic so I can't understand why it takes so long. Hope they get it worked out soon.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Melndav1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Douglasville, Georgia
Level Contributor
71 reviews
65 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Less than expected...”
Reviewed September 28, 2013

After being away from any S&S's for several years, I was excited to finally get to go back to what we affectionately called "The S&S Tea Room", St. Louis. I love S&S...and my very favorite thing to order is the "Steak & Shake meal" which comes with their double steak-burger, choice of 2 sides, and a shake. Their steak burgers are always so good--not too large and not too small. Their fries are slim and crispy--just the way I like them--and I love their little crocks of baked beans. Oh, and the shakes? They're legend...when they are made correctly. A big disappointment when they are not...because who wants a $4 glass of thick chocolate milk?
We saw a sign for S&S the last time we went to Carrollton, so one Sat. at lunch we decided to go have a S&S meal--and I even had a coupon...a great combination!
When we arrived, we were amazed at the crowd! There were people standing outside, sitting outside at the tables, and a line out the door. What??? Was there something going on that we were unaware of? Ordinarily, this would've been my cue to simply put the car in gear and leave, but we'd driven over 20 miles for this meal and we weren't in a hurry, so in a rare moment of patience (or insanity--not sure which) I told them we'd wait that 35 min. for a table. And, we did.
Fortunately, with that many people, one can find a diversion in 'people watching'....which of course, is what most others were doing, as well. One such diversion was worth mentioning, if only for the sake of you-would-have-had-to-be-there-to-believe-it. A car drives up with the window down, and the driver talking loudly into a cell phone. They pulled into a parking place, and 4 people get out, including the driver who was, I think, female. I honestly couldn't tell. She/he was very large, with a large bosom/chest, so no help there. Her/his hair was cut in a boy-cut, so no help there, either. Even though it was barely Sept. and still HOT in GA, she/he was wearing a baggy pair of sweats and a white tee shirt, so again, no clue.
She/he emerged from the car, still talking loudly--replete with hand gestures--on the cell phone, totally oblivious to the crowd in front of the S&S, who were now mildly interested, if only for self-protective measures--as it was obvious that this person was very aggravated at somebody, and was telling the person on the other end of the phone all about it. What was so interesting about the whole matter was that the three passengers, all identifiably male, got out of the car, stuffed their hands in the pockets of their saggy/baggy shorts and proceeded to 'follow the leader' as the driver started pacing up and down and around in the parking lot, still talking/yelling into the phone. After a few minutes of this, I think everybody was watching in amazement as the driver and her entourage walked up and down between the line of parked cars and the crowded door. She/he was waving her/his arms around for emphasis and loudly making her point. I would report what she was upset about, but her colloquial 'English/ebonics' was barely intelligible. I couldn't understand a word they said. Finally, after about 3-5 min. of this, to everyone's astonishment, she just turned around, and in no particular hurry, walked right back to her/his car, unlocked in and got back in. And, as if on cue, all the male passengers got right back into the car. Just as if it was all a choreographed play, and without one word between them, she proceeded to crank the car, back out of her place, and drive right out of the parking lot, still talking loudly into her cell phone.
After they drove away, there was this moment of silence outside, then a series of collective glances between everyone witnessing it, as if to say 'what in the world was all that?!?'. It was honestly so bizarre as to be hilarious, and I thought, no one would believe that if they read it in a book or saw in on a tv show!
Okay, back to the S&S rating: we waited at least a half hour and finally they called our name. The hostess seated us and told us our server would be there soon. Not so soon....but, they were insanely busy. We later found out that the restaurant is relatively new, so that explained a lot, as Carrollton is not a large city.
We ordered the S&S meals, and when I ordered mine, I said, "I'd like the S&S meal, and on my burger, I'd just like mustard on the side." Because, that's all I like on mine, as far as condiments go. He replied, "and you want everything else the same" (which I interpreted to mean: 'but you still want the lettuce and tomato and pickles, right?') and I said yes. I ordered the fries and baked beans, as did my husband, and we ordered one chocolate shake and one vanilla one.
After a good while (which was to be expected, with SRO in there) the shakes came. Yum, couldn't wait! Opened the straw and plunged it into what I thought was going to be a rich, thick, chocolate shake, but instantly knew (by the fact that it met little or no resistance) that I got a large chocolate milk with a little bit of frozen in it. Bummer. I like my shakes thick...after all, they are going to be sitting there for the whole meal, melting. So if they're not thick to start with, well, you get the picture. Ordinarily I would've just sent it back, but they were so busy that I figured I'd probably never GET it back so decided to just forget about it.
When the 'meal' finally came, I was dumbfounded to open my burger to see a ton of mayo and catsup on it, as well as the lettuce, tomato, pickles & onion. WHAT? I just ordered 'mustard on the side!'...Again, because it wasn't actually our server who brought the shakes or the food, I just shook my head, grabbed some napkins and tried to do damage control. Maybe it was my fault--I misinterpreted what he meant by 'everything else the same', and he definitely misinterpreted the 'mustard on the side'. Lesson learned. Next time I'll make myself absolutely clear by saying "no mayo and no mustard". Live & learn
Sadly the the fries were cold--which was really a surprise, as I would've thought they'd have fresh, hot ones coming out every five minutes, but, then again, our plates may have sat up on the wall for 15" before anyone brought them. The beans were missing. Took a few min, but finally flagged down a server (not our reg. one--I don't think we ever saw him again after he took our order) who was gracious enough to go and check. He came back and told us that it would be a couple of min. on the beans, but he would bring them as soon as they were ready. He was a young man, and very, very nice.
Later, when he did bring the beans, they, too were a big disappointment: it was as if they had just opened a can of pork & beans, dumped them in a pot to quickly heat them, then spooned them into the small crocks. Yuk. Did not even eat them.
So, in summary: Shake--not thick/quite runny; burger--would've been great without all that mayo & catsup on it that I couldn't manage to wipe off; fries-cold; beans-straight from can to crock. Not at ALL the way I remembered the S&S meal.
Now, I do understand that most, if not all, of this was probably due to (a) new restaurant and inexperienced staff, and (b) large crowds of people. BUT, having said that, most restaurants understand that in the beginning they will draw large crowds in small cities, and they need to be prepared for that, both with staffing AND with food preparation in advance--especially on weekends. I also think there was an ongoing problem with lack of planning, because the hostess (who spent a lot of her spare moments grousing about the apparently ill-prepared-for situation with another waitress (which is something that really, really looks bad) sort of insinuated as much. She told us bluntly, well, if you come in the middle of the week, there's not many people, but its this way every weekend.
Gosh, S&S, don't you realize that the majority of the people who are 'trying you out' are coming on the weekend, so what they see and experience is what they are going to assume is how you ARE? I think if I were you, I'd be adding weekend staff, and generally preparing a little better for those weekend days...and maybe start baking beans at midnight on Friday!
Our experience won't stop us from going to S&S...it just means we won't be going to the one in Carrollton anytime soon. And, looks like we won't have to: Douglasville is getting one very soon, as I just saw the sign in front of a building being built. Yes! Hope they read this rating and avoid this sort of mess by learning from others' mistakes....Welcome to D'Ville, S&S! (can't wait to try them out!)

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank mabestrn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
“30 minute wait for a sweet tea???”
Reviewed September 15, 2013

The service is so unbelievably slow! It took 10 minutes just to get our drink order, another 10 minutes to get the drinks, and over an hour just to get the food. It was fairly busy, but even then, our waitress didn't even try to make it better or even apologize! From the time we walked in to the time we walked out, it was an hour and a half, and that included the 20 minutes it took for us to eat. On top of it, my burger was cold when I got it, making it obvious that it had been sitting there for a long time before she brought it to us. I can understand if the restaurant had just opened, but it's been over 6 months now, so all of the kinks should be out.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Immasadpanda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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