Have to trim original review, it doesn't fit!
My wife and I looked forward to our Friday night "date night". I was sick with a cold, but I insisted we go out. We decided on Venice as it usually has pretty good food on busy nights. Also, it is near Misquamicut beach where we were going to take a walk afterwards.
We ate at the bar because that's just what we usually like to do. She had a wine and I had a club soda. We spent a good deal of time trying to figure out what to have for dinner. I asked the bartender, Katie, if I could get the ravioli (17 dollars) with a side of salmon (no price listed but a side of chicken or 4 meatballs was 4 dollars). She said, "sure, no problem."
The pasta was a little heavy but overall it was a good meal. The company was excellent of course. We had a good time. Then I got the check. What should have been about a 50 dollar meal had somehow become a 65 dollar check. Not only had I been charged 17 dollars for the ravioli, but I was charged 18 dollars for the salmon.
Now I want you to understand, this was a 4-5 ounce piece of salmon. It was cooked nicely but it was definitely not worth 18 dollars with no sides or dressed up presentation. I'd have been okay paying 8 dollars extra on top of the meal price of my ravioli, but definitely not the price of a whole additional meal.
I talked to Katie. She told me the manager wasn't going to do anything about it. I was shocked. I told her to get him anyway for me.
It took him a solid 5 minutes to come. I used to work in the restaurant business. I know that a manager should make it his priority to talk with upset customers. I did not feel like a priority.
I explained the situation to him. I explained how a side of 4 meatballs, chicken, scallops or shrimp is 4 dollars when added to a pasta meal according to the menu. I showed how there was no written price for adding a piece of salmon to the meal. He explained how it is 4 dollars for 1 scallop or 1 shrimp. I had not realized this at the time and admitted such, but that is truly beside the point as salmon is not listed as a side for a meal. He then showed me another section of the menu that has salmon listed at 18 dollars for a dinner. I then told him that the bartender should have said something along the lines of "Just so you know, the side is going to be 18 dollars", more than the meal itself. The meal altogether cost more than the seafood fra diavolo which has lobster in it!
The manager said his hands were tied and he refused to do anything about it. He told me, "This comes from the top" and "The owner won't let me do anything about it." He proceeded to walk away from me as I was talking to him. I paid the bill and left a 10% tip. I always leave a 25% tip, but this just wasn't right and the bartender should have said something to me. My wife and I left the restaurant. I was ticked, but I was determined not to let it get me down.
On the way home I went to get gas, but my card was declined. I looked up my account and found Venice Restaurant had double charged me. I was pissed.I drove back to the restaurant and asked for the manager. He took his time again but I wasn't being as polite as before. He saw me glaring at him and decided he better come over.
I explained and showed him with my phone and banking app the double charge. He went behind the bar for a few minutes with the bartender to look over their charges. He came back and told me only one charge had been submitted. He said an extra wine was initially charged, but this simply wasn't true. When I initially discussed the cost of the meal with the manager the extra wine was not on the bill. I never gave my credit card until AFTER discussing the bill with the manager. There was no extra wine on the bill to be taken off, ever. I believe they double charged me and when I came in they reversed the second charge and made up the whole "extra wine" story.
I again explained my disappointment in the restaurant. The manager told me "I understand" and "I agree". I replied, "No you don't or you would have done something about it." I explained to him how he was extremely rude in walking away as I was talking to him. I explained to him how my mother had her wedding their 7 years ago. I explained how I have eaten there many times and never will again. I explained how I was going to blog and review the crap out of this.
The manager just smiled and didn't offer any recompense whatsoever. I said "Now you just stand there." He just stared at me, a twinkle in his eye. I continued, "Look at you, you're getting a kick out of this." I ended the night with, "You're a pleasant fellow. Have a nice night."
I will never eat here again and I don't recommend you do either. No one should give business to a restaurant that treats its LOYAL customers so poorly. Also, the issue with two charges to my account is something every wary consumer should be cognizant of. There are other (better) Italian restaurants in Westerly and the surrounding area.