My family and I LOVE diners! We've been to many over the past three years. Hence, we were all excited to go to the Day and Night Diner for my birthday brunch. When we arrived, I commented on how cool the place looked as a classic old diner with cozy booths and neat, old-school stools lining the counter. The look of the place was the best part of our experience.
When the menus came, my spouse and I noticed that there was nothing that really grabbed our attention as a "must try" item. (If you are looking for someone to cook you bacon and eggs you could make for yourself, then this place is fine). The menu did mention one certain type of home fries as a specialty item. So, we ended up getting that with some typical breakfast fare.
Unfortunately, my family was victimized by poor communication between the server and cook. The coffee and chocolate milks came right away and then all went downhill from there. Apparently our order got misplaced (and hence, never placed). About thirty-five minutes later my spouse and I watched as the people next to us got served three of their four meals. The cook failed to read the fourth meal chicken-scratched in the corner of that particular order. Then we got caught in the crossfire of bickering between this wife and husband squabble over who's fault the mix-ups were. It made the awkward situation even more so. Meanwhile, my boys kept asking, "When is our food going to be ready?" as two other families who had come in after us were served their meals, ate, and departed. The whole scene was a great advertisement for why husbands and wives should not own a family business together.
Finally, we watched as our server located our order slip and put in a "rush" on our meals. About and HOUR after we ordered our food finally arrived at the table. Most of it... the specialty home fries were nowhere to be found.... and my wife got an omelet instead of the breakfast sandwich she had ordered. By the time the home fries arrived, we had already figured there would be nothing "special" about the specialty fries. Sadly, we were right.
I am a very patient and understanding person. I know mistakes happen (because I make plenty of them myself). I think I was most disappointed by the fact that our server never attempted to explain what had happened or even offered a half-hearted (never mind whole-hearted) apology to us for the excruciatingly long wait. We asked for the check and (unbelievably!!!) that took another ten minutes to arrive, and not until we offered a not-so-subtle hint of having the whole family STAND UP by our table to wait in the now nearly empty diner. When it did arrive, there was no good will gesture to reduce the price either... nothing that suggested that they valued our business and felt bad about the poor service.
I am a very generous tipper. My spouse sometimes gets mad at me when I leave an extra-large tip. But not this day. Our bill came to $22.15... fortunately we had exact change (I wasn't going to wait another 10 minutes for the 85 cents).