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Sun Jan 27, 2019, 01:54 AM

A question for people who have worked in higher end restaurants.

I figure this isn't something for GD, and probably not lounge, but I didn't know where to ask this.

I live in South Indiana, so not the Mecca of food and fashion like NYC, however at a near-by casino there is a nicer restaurant that I tried to take my parents to last night.

It was 7pm, they opened at 5, and the place was completely empty on a Friday night. I went up and asked for a table and the hostess asked if we had a res, I said no, she said she could seat us at 8pm. We decided not to wait and went elsewhere.



I guess the reason I am posting this is if there are people with restaurant exp who could answer some questions for me, since I was stunned and didn't think to ask the hostess. If the place if empty, and has been open for two hours <staff, cooks, etc> why would they turn away a walk up? There was no line for people to get their 8pm res, so its not like we were going to take a table.

If they had planned for a 7pm rush, why put us at just an hour wait, when the 7 people would still be at those tables at 8?

We were overthinking this as he drove to another place to eat, but we wondered if it was because my dad was wearing blue jeans and a sweater. Mom seemed pretty hurt also saying she thought her LLBean clothes were ok... All and all, it was a pretty weird experience

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Reply A question for people who have worked in higher end restaurants. (Original post)
912gdm Jan 2019 OP
NinaNeon Jan 2019 #1
912gdm Jan 2019 #3
larwdem Jan 2019 #2
dweller Jan 2019 #4
912gdm Jan 2019 #5
PoindexterOglethorpe Jan 2019 #6
KY_EnviroGuy Jan 2019 #7
PJMcK Jan 2019 #8
Fla Dem Jan 2019 #9

Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 01:58 AM

1. it was best to walkout

 

they were already offensive to you
My brother works at a very high end restaurant, and there are a few regulars who are the Ralph Lauren type who drive Bentleys, but wear jeans. I would have asked if there was a dress code, which is fine i guess, but they should have made you aware of it if that was the reason. jmo

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Response to NinaNeon (Reply #1)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 02:07 AM

3. thanks...

im just confused about it. Why would they turn away a large ticket? We were aware of the prices.

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Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 02:07 AM

2. yes

The same thing happened to me in Asbury park NJ in 1988

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Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 02:09 AM

4. 7pm is the beginning of dinner rush at many establishments

and many res are late, so maybe most tables were reserved already

plus in many instances, reservations when they finally arrive, may stay long beyond the time most might occupy a table.. many restaurants will book a table for 2-3 reserves hoping it will all work out, but it doesn't always go that way... someone will overstay and hold up the next reservarion for a bit

I work in a fairly popular mid-higher end restaurant and tonite we served 320 ppl, of which about 90 were walkins, no reservations...
everyone was seated eventually... bottom line?
make a reservation and you will be accommodated eventually...

✌🏼️

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Response to dweller (Reply #4)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 02:19 AM

5. Ok, thanks for the explanation

I guess what gets me is this place was completely empty, with many empty tables and staff at the bar. and there was no line of reservation holders trying to get in. But, Ok.

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Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 02:55 AM

6. In my experience restaurants will often post signs that basically say,

If your party is not here on time, too bad.

Last night I went (with a friend) to a local popular restaurant. We had an 8pm reservation and hoped to be seated earlier. Alas, that couldn't happen, and in fairness it was pretty obvious that the earlier reservations were there.

We went to the bar, had a drink, went back to the restaurant, were seated, and had a lovely dinner.

What you described makes no sense, but I've never worked in a restaurant, so perhaps I'm missing something.

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Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 05:13 AM

7. Another possibility is....

The place was just horribly understaffed, or they had a bunch of servers call in sick. You can have 500 tables, but if you only have two servers on duty, you might wait quite a while.

We occasionally go to a Red Lobster here in Derby City and the place usually looks almost empty on week nights, yet we usually have to wait. I finally figured out they simply don't keep many servers in the place during week nights, so "X" number of servers can only wait on "X" tables.

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Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 08:25 AM

8. I had a similar experience

I took my then-wife and our son to a local restaurant. They had about thirty tables and there were only two that were occupied. The hostess wouldn't seat us because we didn't have a reservation. She asked us if we'd like to wait in the bar for half an hour. I observed that we had a six-year old boy with us and hanging in the bar was not an option. She said that they were expecting a rush in about 15 minutes. I said that's ridiculous and thanks but no thanks.

We never went back. A couple of months later, the restaurant had a fire and went out of business.

Remember, restaurants are service establishments. If they don't treat you-- the customer!-- well, fuck 'em.

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Response to 912gdm (Original post)

Sun Jan 27, 2019, 10:43 AM

9. I probably would have asked. "The place is empty, there is no one waiting, why can't you seat us?.

Even if just to answer some of the questions you and your parents were left with.

Who knows, the hostess may have said, we're expecting a very large party to arrive within 15 minutes and have to be ready for them. That would have explained how she would have been able to seat you at 8:00.

So let's say they were expecting a group of 20-30 people at 7:15. It would take at least until 8:00 to get them all seated and orders taken. I don't know. Just spitballing here.

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