"There was a big group of us eating at The Jalapeño Tree. My sister ordered enchiladas, and about halfway through the meal we hear a scream. My dad asks her why she was screaming. She replies with there's half a cockroach in her enchiladas...only half! We couldn't find the other half of the bug and she already eaten half the enchiladas...so we just assume she's already eaten the other half of the roach!
Also, it was the waitresses first day on the job and when she found out what happened started crying her eyes out and apologizing. We still left her a pretty big tip cause it wasn't her fault. But we've never eaten at another Jalapeño Tree."
"I was eating with a female friend at a reasonably nice restaurant. Not posh, but expensive. Before we were seated we grabbed a drink at the bar, whilst there she signed up to some sort of newsletter at the bar. To be fair it was stuff like this that made me apprehensive to call the place 'posh.' Anyways, we sit down and the girl I'm with gets a text telling her how beautiful she looks. She ignores it and another one comes through asking her what she's doing later. She hasn't got a clue who it is and ignores it. We're finishing up our meal and a 3rd text comes through saying she shouldn't be with a guy like me and asking if she wanted dessert with a 'real man.' Now it's clear someone in the restaurant has her number and we clocked that she had put it down on the application form for the newsletter. Considering the newsletters went into a box behind the bar it was a member of staff. After getting the manager down and him calling the number and pegging what member of staff it was it turned out one of the waiters had taken her number and address off this form, written it on his phone and had spent the evening taking pictures of her from behind the bar. The police ended up involved."
"I was once locked in an Italian restaurant in Amsterdam after trying to leave, about 50 minutes after ordering a pizza. About 10 people came in after us, ordered, and were served, while we waited and waited and waited.
Eventually, I decided that I'd had enough and made a move to leave. At that moment a crazy old Italian woman charged at me, blocking the path to the door, which she then locked. She began to scream at me, about two inches from my face. The other diners were horrified.
Three of her big sons then appeared from the kitchen. All very menacing. She threatened to call the police, which I insisted that she did. She didn't, instead choosing to berate me with a series of progressively aggressive, um, cultural statements.
I dug my heels in, refused to pay for the pizza that we'd never been given, and after about 15 minutes made a firm move back towards the door, which I managed to unlock. We were free.
Definitely the worst outcome to a bad case of the munchies that I've ever had..."
"Worst had to be when I'm with my mother and we went to lunch at some local place - I forget what it's called.
Anyways, the waitress comes along after about 10 minutes and takes our drink order and we each order some soda. Another 5 minutes soda comes out and she takes our order.
Despite the delay, we figured it was an off night for the place and give it the benefit of the doubt.
Well, nearly 30 minutes later - nothing. I'm done with my soda and I desperately want some water and I cannot find a waiter or waitress for the life of me.
Another 10 minutes go by and mom is getting loopy. She took insulin before and is starting to crash from low blood sugars and what little hard candy I had isn't helping. I panic and find a woman in uniform and ask her to bring me a sugared beverage - coke, juice, anything.
Another 10 minutes go by, no food and no sign of a drink. At this point, we've been there for just over an hour and mom is fading fast so I unlock the wheels on her wheelchair and trudge on out. However, THAT is when the waitress who initially took our order seemingly popped out of thin air and asked us where we were going and I lost it.
I explained that my mother was diabetic and we weren't going to wait around if they weren't even going to refill our drinks. I explained I had to leave because it was now a medical emergency and I had to get her some help.
The kicker though? The waitress looked at me and said, 'Are you going to pay for your drinks, at the least?' I just started at her dumbfounded, and walked around her and left."
"My grandma had seen an ad for a new restaurant in the newspaper, and she wanted to go check it out. So, me, her and my mom all went to this little strip mall restaurant. They still had their 'Grand Opening' sign up, so they couldn't have been open for too long, but even still, we were the ONLY people in the entire restaurant. Even up until we left, not a single other person came in.
The place itself was pretty ordinary looking. It didn't look fancy or anything, just normal. When we walk in, the waiter (who had a VERY thick accent) leads us to a table, lays some slips of paper on the table and asks us if we want anything to drink. We tell him what we want, and then he starts to walk away. My mom says 'Where's the menus?' to which the waiter replies, 'In front of you.'
We look down at those slips of paper. Plain, non-laminated, single sheets of paper, with no designs, logos, or anything but plain, centered text, and the word 'MENU' at the top.
We're like 'You're kidding, right?' to which he doesn't reply. We look over the menu, and it doesn't even explain what anything is, what's in it, or what sides they have. It just says 'Seafood Pasta' and then the price, and that's it. Speaking of the prices, they were totally outrageous. They had almost nothing on their menu, though, maybe 10 entrees tops. So at this point me and my mom are like 'Let's get outta here, this place sucks,' but my grandma insisted that we stay.
So the guy comes back and asks us what we want. My mom and grandma both want the Lamb Chops, and they ask what comes with it. He says 'Vegetables and Baked Potato.' They decide that's what they want.
I ask the waiter 'What's in the Seafood Pasta?' to which he replies 'Jumbo Shrimp, Clams and Calamari.'
I say, 'I'll get that, but no Calamari, please.'
'The Calamari is part of the meal,' he says.
'I get that, but I don't want it.'
'Then pick it out.'
'If you do not like it, pick it out.'
'No... just tell the chef not to put it in. I don't want the Calamari.'
'Is that all?' he asks. So I figure he got the point and we sent him off.
About 25 minutes goes by, and we're like 'How can it possibly be taking this long? There's nobody else here.'
So my mom gets up and walks back towards the kitchen and goes 'Hello?'
The waiter comes out. She asks him what's going on, and he says that it'll be done soon.
She comes back to the table. Another 15 minutes go by before they bring the lamb chops to the table, and say that the pasta will be out soon.
As soon as the plates are on the table, we realize something is terribly wrong.
These Lamb Chops are about the size of a McDonald's Hamburger patty, even in thickness. There's two of them, but there's nothing TO them. Then, the vegetables looked (and apparently tasted) like rubber and the baked potato wasn't even cut open, was undercooked, and they didn't even bring anything like butter or sour cream to the table for it. My mom was like 'Okay, I'm not eating this, I'm leaving,' but my grandma insisted that we stay.
So they sent the potatoes back to be cooked more and asked for some butter and sour cream. They returned with cooked, but still tasteless potatoes, and they gave them basically a drop of butter and sour cream per potato. They asked for more, and the waiter got visibly angry before complying.
Of course, the Lamb Chops were basically tasteless. My mom and grandma figured that they must not have seasoned them at all.
Finally, they bring out my Seafood Pasta about 5 minutes after they brought out the re-cooked potatoes.
What do I see as soon as he puts it on the table?
I say 'Hey, I told you I didn't want any Calamari.'
'I told you to pick it out.'
'I'm not picking it out! It's part of your job to ensure that it's not in my food to begin with! What if I was allergic to it?'
'Then you shouldn't have ordered the Seafood Pasta.'
'You should have told the chef to leave the Calamari out! Now you can pick it out!'
'Well, I'm not eating this!'
'You are paying for it whether you eat it or not.'
'Like heck I am. I haven't taken a bite yet.'
'I will call the police if you try to leave without paying.'
So then my mom says that she'll pick it out for me. I tell her no, that the waiter is gonna pick it out because he's a stubborn jerk. The waiter just walks off and ignores us, no matter how many times I yell at him to get back to the table. I ended up picking out the Calamari, since there were only a few of them in it, but it's still absurd that he couldn't just tell the chef to leave it out.
But the problems didn't end there! Oh no. For you see, my Seafood Pasta apparently had Jumbo Shrimp, but not from what I could see. What I saw in my pasta was only very slightly bigger than Sea Monkeys. They were about the size of a dime and there was probably only 10-15 of them in the whole dish.
'But did it taste good?' you may ask.
No. No, it didn't. The 'Alfredo' sauce barely had any flavor at all, and the noodles tasted hard and undercooked.
We ended up only finishing maybe a third of each of our meals before we decided that this place was the worst restaurant ever and left. We asked to speak to the owner, to see about a discount for the poor service, and it turns out that the waiter IS the owner, and he absolutely refused to give us any sort of discount. We paid him and left, leaving all the rest of our food sitting on the table, and told them that we would NEVER come back, and we would warn all of our friends to never come here.
And then we went to Burger King on the way home because we were still starving.
The best part of all of this? They closed down less than a month later."
"My wife has just given birth to our son a few weeks before and we had just built enough confidence to venture into public with him. We decided to have dinner at a chain that we like. Everything went great except for the waitress dropping an entire pitcher of water on our son.
Another time I was eating lunch at a nice place on the river in Chattanooga when I noticed a spider had dropped onto our table. I looked up and saw a web with hundreds of baby spiders crawling and dropping. I noped and moved inside. Watching 20 something ladies running up and down the river isn't worth the spiders."
"I was on a student trip to Barcelona with my class and two teachers. On the last day of the trip, a couple of the girls + the teachers went out for dinner. We found a very small restaurant, that served a 3-course meal VERY cheap. Perfect for young, poor students.
We were quickly seated in the completely empty restaurant and ordered our food. About 30-45 minutes passed when suddenly a scooter came into the backroom (I had a view into the backroom). The scooter was parked, and shortly after a 'ding' was heard. Out came our food - first, an appetizer of broth soup. Then 20-30 minute more waiting, another scooter trip, more 'dings' and out came the main course: Boiled rice on half the plate, beef stew on the other, definitely bought and thawed from a grocery store. For dessert, we had a choice of two things, a fruit plate or lemon pie. Being the cake-aholic that I am, I chose the pie - the rest chose fruit plate. I got a 'slightly burnt' lemon pie, but the fruit plate was a sight to behold. Out came the small, male waiter balancing 7 plates each with an orange rolling around on it and a knife for each. And to top it off; the orange was frozen."
"Last weekend I think I discovered London's answer to the Soup Nazi; apparently we've got a Noodle Nazi in South Kensington.
I stopped for lunch in a little hole in the wall noodle shop. It's one of those places where they'll put two different things into a paper box container, like Panda Express in the US. I ordered mine and queued to pay.
There was a woman ahead of me who was buying noodles to share with her and her friend's children. She paid for the food, then noticed that there were no plates. She asked the woman at the till for some extra plates. The worker rolled her eyes and said, 'We don't have any plates.'
'Oh,' said the customer. 'May we have some extra boxes to eat out of, then, so we can share?'
Restaurant Employee #1 rolls her eyes at Restaurant Employee #2, who reluctantly nods. 'Yes,' says RE#1, 'but they cost 50p each.'
'Oh, lovely,' answers Customer, holding out her money to pay for them. 'We'll take seven.'
Here's the good part: RE#1 answers, 'No.'
Customer and I exchange baffled looks. 'But you just said they cost 50p, and I'm trying to pay for them,' she says amazingly calmly.
RE#1 again rolls her eyes at both RE#2 and the customer. 'We can't sell you seven. You can have this Styrofoam cup to eat out of if you want.'
The customer is floored, understandably. 'Can't I just buy some boxes? My children need a surface to eat off of.'
'You can have a cup.'
At this point Customer's friend comes over, having seen the weirdness and the eye rolling. She takes a cup and hands it to her four-year-old child, who looks confused.
'They won't let me buy boxes!' the customer incredulously tells her friend, who laughs at the absurdity of it. The restaurant employees all roll their eyes.
'Fine,' says the friend. 'Can we just buy TWO boxes, then?' The REs roll their eyes.
'I guess,' begrudgingly answers RE#2. Finally, she sold them two small boxes for £1.
These two families, kids and all, then proceeded to dole out their noodles into their respective cups/boxes, with some children sharing because there wasn't enough.
I was blown away at the rudeness of the staff. I was pretty angry, so when it was my turn I asked to buy a box. I smiled while the REs rolled their eyes at me but dutifully paid my 50p. After my purchase, I walked right over to the family and gave them my extra box.
Good noodles, but seriously messed up customer service. If you're running a restaurant, why in the heck would you not think about the possibility that one of your customers might need a plate?"
"Was in an IHOP with my family. Sat there for about 30 minutes with no service after being seated. We waved down the servers but received no assistance.
I got frustrated, went to the cashier and asked for my check. This totally confused the cashier, they couldn't find my check. NOW all of a sudden, I had everyone scrambling to help me find my bill. They called over the manager who got flustered.
I let the manager stew over this for a few minutes as he asked me some questions to help identify my table, server, etc.
It was then that I let him have it by saying that we've been there now for about 45 minutes sitting at that table and have not been served one thing. We've asked for multiple staff to take our order, get us drinks, but no one has responded.
Their eyes widen as I laid it into them. I then waved my family over and said we will be going somewhere else this morning.
And that is the last time I've been to an IHOP."
"Uno's Pizzeria in NYC. Went there with my wife, sis, brother-in-law, and kids. We were returning from an Indian event, so we are all dressed in Indian clothes. We waited to be seated, like you are supposed to, and were seated by one of the waitresses.
Shortly after, the manager (who clearly hadn't seen us being seated by the waitress) comes over to our table, having decided that we must be clueless foreigners unfamiliar with Western restaurant etiquette, and says to us in a loud voice, enunciating each word, 'You can't just seat yourself; you are supposed to wait there (pointing to the waiting area) to be seated.'
I calmly mentioned that we were in fact seated by one of the staff, and I would appreciate if he apologizes to all of us. Individually. He did."
"Went to a local Chili's right after a management change, and the new guys in charge were total idiot frat-boy types. Like they kept standing in the middle of the restaurant talking to each other and occasionally yelling at the busboys to clean faster, while they did absolutely nothing. They loudly berated three different waitresses while we were there for something that wasn't their fault and all the customers around were visibly uncomfortable. My aunt, who used to be a manager at a restaurant, actually called our waitress over to ask her about it. The girl said that their previous manager moved across the state and Fratboy #1 was the employee with the most seniority. When he got promoted he promoted Fratboy #2, which caused half the staff to quit. She said she'd worked 17 straight days, 10-14 hour shifts each. Poor girl looked DEAD. Like dark circles under her eyes, hands shaking, skin pale. We left her like an 80% tip, and my aunt typed up a little comment in that automated review system they have (which she'd asked about and been told it went to a regional manager, not the jerks running this place). While she was typing, Fratboy #1 came up and stood behind her, obviously trying to get a glimpse of what she was saying. When she turned, he just gave her a big grin and went 'Wow! That's one long comment, anything I can help you with?'"
"I was at a Ruby Tuesday with my dad and sister. Everything was fine at first: we sat down, ordered our food, and all was good. Well, except for the fact our waiter was this weird dude who kept using Internet-speak like 'So much win!' and 'Epic fail!' And he kept coming back to our table constantly just to stand there and talk, which wouldn't have been as much a problem if the guy wasn't so cringy. Then an hour passes, and we're sitting there going 'Where's our food?' Suddenly our waiter comes back and goes 'Hey, I forgot to put your orders in. What did you want again?' Now, most people would understandably say 'What is wrong with you?' but for some ungodly reason, we just rolled with it. Our food eventually came out, and by some miracle we got exactly what we ordered. Still, it was quite a long time before we went to that restaurant again."
"I was in Berlin at a newly opened (we found out) burger/steak place. We get seated outside, and before we get to say that we would rather sit inside, the waiter is gone. Another waiter comes takes our drinks order, and when we tell him that we would like to sit inside, he just points at a table and leaves. We go sit down and after what felt like 15 minutes we get our soda and order two burgers, and the waiter tells us that it is our own fault because we moved. In the meantime we saw what must have been the owner yelling at three different waiters, knocking over a bucket of nasty floor water and just leaving it to go plug in his iPhone to play music while we could hear the keyboard clicks from his texting through the speakers. We wait 40 minutes, and it really wasn't a busy night, the place was maybe half full, and ask another waiter, 3rd one, where our food is, he looks terrified and goes to ask the owner, who then comes over and just says like give it five minutes. We do and then when I ask again, he looks at me like I am making some impossible demand and then proceeds to give us one wrong kind of burger that I had seen being on the counter for 15 minutes. When I tell him that I am not going to eat that one he literally throws the french fries on the floor and screams at a waiter to 'deal with this trouble customer.' Completely perplexed we left and as if it weren't enough we saw a rat on the way out. I wrote a strongly worded yelp review at Burger King afterward."
"Long, long ago, my parents and I met up with my grandparents in Breezewood, PA, halfway between Baltimore and Pittsburgh. We had a place we always went to, called the Gateway Diner. Going there was a highlight of every trip to see my grandparents. This is about the last time we ate at the Gateway.
About a year before this, the Gateway had a huge expansion/remodel to become more of a truck stop travel plaza, so that should have been our first clue that something wasn't going to go right. We order five typical dinners, and our waitress comes back with one salad, two entrees, an undercooked steak and nothing for nine-year-old me. Naturally, we're confused and we send everything but the salad back.
Thirty minutes later, a new waitress brings out one entree, two salads, another (different) undercooked steak and still nothing for me. They never confirmed this for us but the waitress had quit in the meantime. Now my mom and grandparents' meals were getting cold, and they had salads that they didn't feel like eating since they had already started on their entrees. Meanwhile, I'm starving and poaching fries from my grandmother.
After another twenty minutes, they finally brought out a steak the consistency of charcoal for my dad. At least they finally brought my chicken fingers. We ate pretty quickly after that.
At the end of the night, I went with my grandparents to look around the gift shop when my parents came in abruptly and said: 'We're leaving.' I said 'Oh, did we pay the check?' They said 'We're not paying. Let's go.'
It's the first, and to my recollection, the only time that my parents ever dined and dashed. My grandmother always felt guilty about this, so much so that when we met up again for Passover a few months later my mom had printed a fake wanted poster for her arrest."