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“Fire bar - Not Recommended”
Review of Fire Bar and Grill

Fire Bar and Grill
Ranked #42 of 139 Restaurants in Crystal Lake
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar scene
Dining options: Late Night
Reviewed January 10, 2009

NOTE: If looking for an awesome sports bar to go to, with great staff and healthy atmosphere, go to Buffalo Wild Wings, it is on Randall and Algonquin you will be much happier. Also in Algonquin a place called Double Jacks.

Someone needs to tell them Business 101, the customer is always right, even when they are wrong.

Let it be known that this place became incorporated in Nov 2007, so they are a new place. Also the people working this place are 35-36, so they are young new owners. Also none of them even live in McHenry County, and they are all freinds. These guys are not polite, and their security staff does nothing to peacefully solve situations.

I would normally say give them a break, but business is business. As a previous business owner, I know you have to bend a little to keep customers coming back and not upsetting them to the point that they give your business negative attention.

From my experience at this place, which I will never go back is that the owners and security staff could careless about the people and only care about their incomes, to the point of disrespecting people and turning away future dollars.

Definately think hard about going to this place as there are a lot of other well established customer loving places all up and down Randall road.

4  Thank thesurger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed November 1, 2008

I highly recommend that your dining dollars are not spent at this Crystal Lake restaurant. Any customer dissatisfaction will not be handled appropriately. Below is a summary of my experience. I apologize for its length, but I feel that the details behind the matter are important and should be considered prior to providing your patronage to this establishment. Thank you for your time to review.

My wife, two children, and I decided to have lunch at the Fire Bar & Grill on Saturday, November 1st, 2008. Part of our decision was based upon a gift certificate that was purchased on Restaurant.com. We had previously purchased two other gift certificates in the past and had redeemed them at this restaurant with no issues. Today was a dramatic exception.

One criteria required to use the $25 gift certificate is to spend $35. With one of my children being an infant, my wife, daughter, and I were left to order more food than normal to reach the $35 threshold. After ordering our appetizers and entrees, my wife commented to the waitress that we were “ordering enough to use our gift certificate.” The waitress smiled at my wife and made no comment.

Once we completed our meal, I handed the gift certificate and my credit card to the waitress. She accepted both and left to settle the check. A few minutes later, she returned stating that they no longer accepted Restaurant.com gift certificates. She asked if I would like to talk to the manager and I replied “yes.”

The manager came to the table and again stated that they do not accept these gift certificates. I asked why the waitress would not have informed us of this, or at least inquired what gift certificate we had, when we placed our order. He indicated that it was not her responsibility and we should have showed her the gift certificate. I also wondered why she would have even initially accepted the gift certificate with my credit card if they were not accepted.

He then stated that a notice was posted on the entrance to the restaurant that these gift certificates were not accepted. I told him that I did not see the posting and I still felt the waitress should have informed us before accepting our large order. He disagreed and offered no resolution other than to pay the bill in full without the gift certificate credit. Extremely frustrated, I allowed him to charge the full amount to my credit card.

As I left the restaurant I told the manager that I would not be returning and would tell others of my unpleasant experience. He then responded that I lied about my wife stating that we were going to use a gift certificate when we placed our order! I don’t know what the waitress told the manager, but my wife absolutely did make this comment. The manager was now calling me a liar and I was completely infuriated!

My wife and infant had already left the restaurant when I was paying the bill, but my five year old daughter was still with me. Not to make a bigger scene than had already been made, I decided to leave.

As I left the restaurant, I inspected all the signing that was at the entrance. There was absolutely no sign referencing Restaurant.com gift certificates! I re-entered the restaurant and brought this to the manager’s attention and his response was “this conversation is over.”

My temper now boiling over, I left the restaurant and decided to call the local police department regarding the matter. While I was unsure if there was anything they could do in this civil matter, I wanted to at least inquire. After calling the non-emergency police phone number and explaining the situation to the dispatcher, she stated that they had no issue with sending an officer over.

As I am waiting for the officer to arrive, the manager comes to the entrance of the restaurant and begins posting a sign referencing Restaurant.com gift certificates! So, I re-entered the restaurant and called out the fact that there was not a notice posted previously. The manager stated that “someone must have taken it down” and again refused to discuss the matter any further.

The officer arrived and I explained the situation. He was willing to talk to the manager but stated that he could not force him to accept the gift certificate. I told him it was no longer about the money, but the principle of the matter. He suggested that I contact the Better Business Bureau. I didn’t want to waste any more of the officer’s time, so I thanked him for stopping by and concurred with his suggestion.

So, in addition to contacting the Better Business Bureau, I am posting my experience on various websites in an attempt to warn potential customers. The management in this establishment does not have concern or appreciation for their customers. Despite the $25 that I feel I was over-charged, I was called a liar, and was not even offered an apology once the manager recognized that there was no posting at the entrance as he claimed.

Thank you again for reading this lengthy review; however, I feel that you gain a better appreciation of the situation with all the details. I am hopeful that by reaching even a handful of people, this business will be impacted by more than any $25 gift certificate would have cost them.

8  Thank dlafarrell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
firebarandgrill, Owner at Fire Bar and Grill, responded to this reviewResponded November 24, 2008

Due to an overwhelming amount of counterfeit gift certificates being presented, and the lack of an appropriate validation system; Fire Bar and Grill no longer accepts gift certificates from Restaurant.com. Restaurant.com sells $25 gift certificates for $10 (you are basically buying a $25 discount). The restaurants enrolled in the program do not receive a penny of profit from the $10 sale (they also lose $25 of the $35 spent). Fire Bar prides itself on its quality food and good service. A testament to the quality of our food and service are the thousands of satisfied customers that we have the pleasure of serving every week. The reviewer also mentioned that a family of four had a hard time meeting the $35 minimum purchase required to use the gift certificate. I think this statement speaks volumes of our competitive pricing. I had a chance to speak to the server regarding this isolated incident. She claims that the wife did in fact say that they had a gift certificate but did not state that the gift certificate was from Restaurant.com. Fire Bar and Grill sells and accepts several gift certificates everyday - the server assumed that the customers were planning on redeeming one of our gift certificates (especially since we have not accepted gift certificates from Restaurant.com since December of 2007). As stated to the customer, Restaurant.com does allow you to exchange the gift certificate for one from another restaurant. Our manager was also willing to discount the total bill $10 (the cost of the gift certificate) – the customer rejected both resolutions. The manager on duty stated that the irate customer ripped down the disclaimer on his way out of Fire Bar and Grill, as witnesses by several regular patrons. The officer that was dispatched to the scene also agreed that this was not a police matter and they should not have been called. This review does not accurately rate the quality of our food or our service. It is merely an isolated incident that was not handled in a manner acceptable to the customer. In this business, we do understand that it’s nearly impossible to make everyone happy, every time – we do however try. - Sarge

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