We have been here many times and it is really a mixed bag as far as service goes. The food is not exactly spectacular but it is solid and certainly not terrible. Tonight my family of 5 showed up at 4 pm and requested to sit outside on the near empty patio (just one couple seated outside where there are 10-14 tables). The manager was standing at the hostess station, though at the time I didn't know it was the manager, and he actually ROLLED HIS EYES. I didn't assume it was for us, and we waited to be seated.
The patio was basically empty, and our hostess told us to "choose a table and sit!" We asked if we could push two tables together so we could accomodate five people, as the tables seat four. The hostess said fine. Our waiter came out, took our drink order, and we were dining, or so we thought.
Soon the manager, the same young, thin, blond man with glasses that had rolled his eyes at us inside came out and told us, "I can't allow you to sit here. It is happy hour, and these are our best tables."
We said, "There is no one here. We have 5 people, and we can't fit in a four person table comfortably. We need a little extra room. What are we supposed to do?"
He said, "It will probably get busy soon, so I need you to move."
The hostess already okayed this seating arrangement, and there was ONLY ONE OTHER OCCUPIED TABLE THERE. We pointed this out and wondered why we should be uncomfortable NOW based on what MIGHT happen. This young man allowed that we could sit here "For now" but when other customers start to show up, we would have to move.
Are you kidding me?!
We opted to leave.
But not before informing him that we dine at this restaurant no less than once a week, spending no less than $120 per visit, plus standard 20% tip. However, due to his brusque, rude, and unwelcoming attitude, we would not return.
If the hostess said we could pull another table over on an empty patio, for good customer service they should have let it ride instead of approaching us, THE CUSTOMER, and telling us to move. They should train her not to seat people that way again and let it ride until we leave. I even pointed out to the manager that as a family with children, we would likely not be taking up the table for too too long. No matter, this young man had made up his mind that he did not want our business. It is also worth pointing out that when our server came by and told us it was happy hour we told him we want the premium drinks and don't care about the cost. We were prepared to spend money, just as we always do at every place we visit.
I can only assume we were pre-judged as a family with kids. It is my opinion that this young man showed very poor and hasty judgement and lacks the customer service skills vital for someone in a management position.
This situation was definitely mishandled. It didn't have to be a big deal and I don't know why it turned into one. As mentioned there was only one other party (of two) on the patio and it seems bad practice to turn down business. I am unsure why my family is of less value as customers than the crowd that the manager was expecting, hoping and willing to trade our business for. How is a group of two occupying a table for four okay but five people cannot utilize readily available and empty space? 5/8 is greater than 2/4.
We ended up eating Old Chicago down the street, where they also have outdoor seating. We had excellent service, and our party increased by two shortly into our visit. Our bill was $169ish, plus a $30 tip for our server. Could've been at Chevy's.
We won't be back. There are too many other places to spend our money. Too bad.
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