Ex-Boyfriend’s Shoddy Service

August 6, 2017

in Server Stories

This happened to my best friend and me about a year ago at an Italian themed restaurant that prides itself on customers being “family.” This is one of our favorite restaurants and we’ve never once had a problem there until this experience happened.

The hostess was polite, and as it was about 4:00 PM, there was no wait. It wasn’t until our server showed up that the trouble began. The trouble being, our server happened to be my friend’s ex-boyfriend. It was a bitter break up that did not go well.

The break up had been about 8 months previous to this experience, and she was just wanting to forgive and forget and have a nice meal. He literally rolled his eyes the second he saw her. He tossed the bread sticks on the table and took our drink orders, then he disappeared. We waited, and waited, and waited. Finally about 20 minutes later our drinks showed up and he took our order. Now I don’t mind waiting when needed, but the place was pretty dead.

For sides, I ordered the salad and she ordered the soup. He only brought the salad. Not a word about the soup. In this place the salad comes in a huge bowl and is shareable, so she just told me she wasn’t worried about it, she’d just have some of the salad. She didn’t want to make a fuss about it.

Then we waited, and waited, and waited. He did come by to refill my drink twice, but ignored her empty glass even though she politely asked for another glass of wine, twice. Forty minutes later our entrees arrive. She had ordered the Chicken Alfredo and I had ordered the Seafood Alfredo. My order was accurate. She received spaghetti and marinara sauce, which she happens to hate. She politely informed him that it wasn’t what she had ordered, and he rolled his eyes and took the plate away.

Twenty minutes later, her new dish arrives. Now it’s some kind of chicken sandwich. She again politely informs him that this is also not what she ordered, and could she please just get the Chicken Alfredo. Another eye roll and the sandwich is hastily yanked away. ANOTHER 20 minutes later he arrives with… spaghetti and marinara AGAIN! By this time I had been long finished with my meal and we were just so ready to get out of there.

She AGAIN informed him it wasn’t what she ordered but that we would just like the bill, please. Yet another eye roll and the pasta was yanked away. He came back after another 15 minutes with our bill, and we were shocked to discover that in addition to the valid charges of our drinks and my meal, he had charged her for one spaghetti and marinara, one chicken sandwich, and two glasses of wine that she NEVER received.

My friend was so flustered by this time I took over and informed him that we would only be paying for the meal and drinks we received. Another eye roll and 10 minutes later we finally had the corrected bill. We never in our lives had NOT tipped, but this time we left exact change. She also called corporate after we left and explained the experience and they kindly sent her a $20 gift card.

What sucks is we’re both decent tippers, and had he just served us like any other customer, he would have received about 25%, which is our go-to for satisfactory service. In hindsight, we probably should have asked to be seated in a different section, but we had no idea how immature he was going to be about the whole thing.

We went back several times but always made sure we were not seated in his section if he was working. Well, that is, until he got fired, so now we can go any time and not worry about it. I do have to give the restaurant props for always being a wonderful place to go. It’s not their fault their server had a grudge against his ex-girlfriend.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

donna August 7, 2017 at 12:29 am

When it was obvious he was going to be a jerk, should have just asked to be seated in a different section. Wouldn't have been as good a story to tell, but it would have been a much nicer dinner.

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Beth August 7, 2017 at 11:37 am

Why didn't you bring it to the attention of management once the breadsticks were tossed on the table? You need to stick up for yourself instead of ranting after something happened when they can't make it better. Next time it starts just ask for a different server and I guarantee none of the above will happen.

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Edward August 23, 2017 at 6:02 am

Yes you should've asked to be seated in a different section. Problem solved.

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jonesnori September 17, 2017 at 8:07 pm

Many people, especially but not exclusively women, are trained from childhood not to kick up a fuss. It is not fair to blame the victims here for being politer than some folks would have been about this truly outrageous behavior. I am glad to hear that they did complain afterward, once they had had a chance to think about it.

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