Dinners From Hell offers true stories about restaurant dining disasters written by diners, servers and chefs.

We've all had those dining experiences when things went dreadfully wrong. Perhaps it was a social blunder, an obnoxious diner, a waiter or waitress with an attitude, a temperamental chef, an embarrassing faux pas, or a food or beverage incident. Find out what others have had to endure by reading stories about dinners gone bad.

I went to my favorite Vietnamese restaurant as I typically do when I’m in Maryland. It was off to a bad start as soon as I walked in the door. It’s freezing this time of year so I didn’t want to sit near the door. I asked to sit in a booth and was told that somebody was already sitting there. No biggie. I sat elsewhere and waited for a waiter to take my order.

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I work at a new restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA). It’s awesome. The manager and two owners are amazing, fun guys who love people. They just do. They are genuinely interested in every person – customer or employee – who walks in that door. In fact, we became friends within 10 minutes of meeting each other, and I work for them (or, as they say, I “work with” them). The mood at the bar/restaurant is generally light, fun, and happy. The bartenders do some flair. The owners have a laugh (and a drink) with guests. Employees are all best friends. You get the idea.

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I work at a restaurant. It’s a small one. It’s American and Chinese. We serve breakfast also. There are so many things wrong with this place.

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My boyfriend and I recently went to a little diner that was near our house. The place isn’t too busy, and we’re seated as soon as we walk in, which is nice.

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I’m one of those English people who doesn’t particularly understand “tipping” just because we don’t do it here (or very seldom!).

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My family had an experience at an Atlanta pizzeria the other night that you’re going to find unbelievable. The food was good, and the service was great, but the four people sitting in the booth across from us were another story! This happened on 11/23/14 from approximately 6:25-7:30. Their server was a blond woman and ours was an older man. Not ONE employee did anything about their obnoxious behavior!

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“Separate checks, but we are sharing a pizza.” Okay, folks… don’t ask for separate checks but then want to share items across the split. I was not a math major and the computer system in use is archaic and unable to do that. With 5-6 other tables on a very busy night, it is not realistic to nitpick about splitting checks.

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A while back, two buddies and I went to a well-known chain restaurant to celebrate a birthday. The place was packed; however, we were seated in no time.

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Server Ignored by Customer “In a Hurry”

October 17, 2014 Diner Stories

I had a day off and went to breakfast at one of my favorite local places, a restaurant attached to a B&B that only served breakfast and dinner. I came in around 8:45 and ordered. They closed for breakfast at 9:30, but always seated customers up until the last minute.

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Diners Encounter Gift Card Difficulty

October 9, 2014 Odds & Ends Stories

My wife and I decided to go out for lunch last weekend. We ended up going to a popular chain restaurant in the city. As soon as we walked in we noticed the place was slow and quiet; only two or three other parties were dining – not bad.

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Non-Drinking Diners Ignored by Server

September 10, 2014 Food & Drink Stories

My husband and I went to a well-known chain restaurant in Pennsylvania for dinner 5 years or so ago. They were having a special and they had a dessert that was only available for a certain time and it sounded divine.

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Three Hour Wait for Meal

May 26, 2014 Odds & Ends Stories

It was two or three years ago on Veteran’s Day, also my brother’s birthday, and we decided to go to a common chain restaurant. Due to it being Veteran’s Day, the restaurant was packed with military personnel. There was a two hour wait. There were two things wrong with the wait. Number one was that my […]

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