Restaurants don't always get it right. These particular restaurants made decisions so bad, their customers and even workers don't understand how they'd ever think that it would have been a good idea in the first place.
They Not Only Took Away His Favorite Dish, They Insulted Him To His Face
“There was a restaurant (chain) in my local area, Las Margaritas. They only had one here, which had moved at one point. We really liked their foods, so we stuck with them after the move. We liked the waiters/waitresses, the service, and the prices were tolerable. Eventually, they were bought out by another company that wanted to do a makeover of the place. We patiently waited for a few months during the remodel.
Now, before I continue, I should tell you that I’m the kind of person that likes to find something that I like and usually exclusively eat that dish when at that restaurant. I’m a creature of habit. Anyway, continuing on.
Upon re-opening, all the original staff was gone. That was a disappointment; they had been there at both venues, and I had known them casually for literally 20 years. I wanted to order my signature dish from that restaurant, chicken mole. To my surprise, it wasn’t on the menu. That wouldn’t be the end of the world, but it did suck. I asked the waiter why it wasn’t on the menu, and here was the answer:
‘The management thinks that the crowd that orders something like chicken mole is the kind of crowd that only comes in and orders something like that and a beer, and they’re not the kind of clientele we are trying to build now.’
So, basically, they told me, to my face, that they think the kind of people that order that dish are, essentially, ‘too low class’ for their restaurant now. Welp, I just left. Never went back. From what I hear, it isn’t doing great. Essentially, they decided that they wanted to try and build an image as a ‘more sophisticated’ restaurant, and in the process, have alienated all of their clientele. It’s arrogant and foolish, to say the least.”
“Entree Means You Eat It Here”
“I found out the hard way that my local Indian restaurant was run by an idiotic coupon-Nazi.
They had pretty good food and I had a coupon for buy one get one for any dinner entree. My girlfriend and I placed a carry-out order and went to pick it up. The food was bagged up and ready and smelled great, but when I presented the coupon, the owner refused it saying, ‘You cannot use this for carry-out.’ When I objected, noting that the coupon says no such thing, he replied, ‘It’s for a dinner entree: entree means you eat it here.’ I told him entree means no such thing and that the menu even says the entrees are all available for carry-out. He insisted that I couldn’t use the coupon.
I went out to talk to my girlfriend, told her the situation and got her OK to use my nuclear options.
I went back in and said, ‘I ordered the food intending to use the coupon. You refused to sell it to me. Since I CAN’T use the coupon, I’ll just go elsewhere. I’ll keep my money and you keep the food.’
Sensing a full loss on the food, the owner said, ‘OK you can use the coupon,’ then decided he wanted to lecture me.
I cut him off and said, ‘I’m not offering to use the coupon anymore. I’ll offer you twenty bucks (It would have been more like $25 with the coupon) for that order of food.’ He agreed.”
Quiznos Made Some Very Bad Business Decisions
They made the WORST business decisions that they could have. Everything about the company has been screwed since 2005-2006. My friend’s dad owned a Quiznos, so I got a lot of information about the deal with Quiznos franchisees.
Their first mistake was over saturating the market, expanding too fast, and screwing over their franchisees. There was supposedly agreements with the franchisees that the franchisees would own a certain area. Well, Quiznos basically said screw that and would open up other Quiznos close by, because money. This immediately cut down on gross income per Quiznos. Things got tight for a lot of owners but they could still make due, that is, until the death blow.
Subway was the company to deliver the death blow: $5 footlong subs.
The blame can’t only rest on Subway, it was really due to poor corporate management. You see, Quiznos started by worrying about quality. They bought higher quality meats and cheeses and created a nice menu centered around signature subs that utilized specialized ingredients that Quiznos only had. Quiznos basically had its own niche market. Unfortunately, management was full of retards so they decided it was in Quiznos best interest to directly compete with the $5 footlong.
So, for the franchisees, margins got tighter. A lot of cost cutting was done, and I mean really nitpicky cost cutting. The Quiznos in my area that lasted the longest was so stingy that they’d only let you have one napkin per sub, strategies like this was all that kept them open.
Even with all the changes Quiznos still couldn’t compete with Subway. So, they figured they needed to expand the menu. They started with the Sammies, a low-cost alternative created to compete with the $5 footlong. Those didn’t work too well, brought sales up some but not enough. So, then came the torpedoes and bullets, another product to compete directly with the $5 footlongs. Instead of getting rid of any items, they just kept growing.
In the end, none of these items really raised sales. The problem is that people don’t go to Quiznos for cheap $5 subs, they go for their favorite signature sub and don’t mind paying more. Through all their cost cutting and changes, though, they’ve ruined that market. Quiznos should have never competed with Subway the way they did. The executives drove the business into the ground.
I LOVED Quiznos, it saddens me that I can only find them in Hess gas stations now, and I’m not about to eat a gas station sub.”
They Didn’t Want Food Waste, But Now People Have Lost Their Appetite
“A Chinese buffet opened in a really cheap neighborhood and a lot of people who dined there apparently wasted food. So instead of adding a fee for wastage like other restaurants, they replaced their Chinese zodiac placemat with a giant picture of an African famine victim holding a plate out. There was a caption along the lines of, ‘Don’t waste food because people less fortunate don’t have any.’ I mean WTF. They got rid of it the next time I was there, though.”
When A Restaurant Is Too Loud To Be Enjoyable
“‘Trendy’ restaurants/bars that blare music at full blast regardless of how many people are in. A group of us went to a bar after work one day for a couple of beers. We were the only people in there and the music was so loud we couldn’t hear each other (which kinda defeats the idea of going for a beer and a chat). We politely asked the bar staff to turn the music down a little, so they turned it up instead. We downed our drinks and went elsewhere. The place went under a few weeks later.”
Kid-Friendly Restaurants Aren’t Necessarily Adult-Friendly
“At East Side Mario’s they did a ‘kids eat free five days a week.’ Which was like, ok cool for those families that will order, say, four meals and no alcohol and only have a $30 bill. Meanwhile it kept me and my fiancé from going because we didn’t want to be surrounded by screaming kids all night and our bill would have been around $50-60; I didn’t think it was a smart move to do that five days a week.”
“I Was Stunned This Guy Was Giving Me A Hard Time About My Clearly Wrong Steak”
“I took five of my friends out to lunch for my birthday. Ordered a steak and it wasn’t cooked to my liking. It’s a twenty dollar steak that I wanted medium rare, it was obviously well done. The server called the ‘manager’ over who started arguing with me. It’s my birthday, so we’re drinking and I’m paying for the whole bill. I was stunned that this guy was giving me a hard time. My buddy, who is a chef, called the guy out as unprofessional, unknowledgeable, and unaccommodating. The manager caved, but brought me a completely undercooked, raw steak. Needless to say, I was on a crusade to tell everyone I knew to boycott the restaurant. So the worst decision this restaurant ever made was hiring an idiot as a manager.”
A Combo Doesn’t Mean What You Think It Means
“I was working in Northern Canada in a village not far from the Arctic circle. We had spent the last few weeks eating all of our meals out of our hotel restaurant and eventually we decided to try something new. Across the road, there was a small Pizza Hut/KFC combo restaurant in one of the hardware stores, so I went in and looked at the menu board and saw a pizza combo for something like $15, which included a SLICE of pizza and a pop. Now being the north, this price wasn’t totally outrageous considering that 2 liters of Ginger Ale costs $13. So I ordered the pizza combo, waited a few minutes, and got my slice. I said, ‘Can I get a Coke with that?’ The girl at the counter said the slice doesn’t come with a drink. I said that I ordered the combo. She said that the combo doesn’t come with a drink. I asked, ‘Then what makes it a combo?’ She shrugged. I pointed to the picture on the board. She got annoyed and called the manager.
He said, ‘I assure you, our combos don’t come with a drink.’
I looked at my receipt, it said, ‘Pizza+Drink combo.’ The manager said, ‘Yes, yes, I know, I know, but up here, our combos don’t come with a drink.’ I sighed and let it be that; Anyway, $15 slice of pizza.”
Out With The Uglies, In With The Hotties
“This is from my own experience: not listening to your employees. My last employers had the delusion that the reason the store wasn’t making the money it used to was because the employees were ‘old, ugly or not young and flashy enough.’ This was in Las Vegas when we were being destroyed by the economic collapse, but was one of the top grossing stores in the chain for years. We trimmed down hours and the store was still making money, but just not at the same level as before.
The solution for them wasn’t lowering prices to be more competitive, it was firing employees for the reasons given above and hiring younger, very attractive people. I was told to make it happen or I’d lose my job. I lost my job, they fired everyone and hired their cool people. Their business is now failing miserably, losing tens of thousands a month. Also, I found out the person they replaced me with stole over $100k from them in the first six months!”
Expensive Food, Terrible Ingredients, And Unsafe Kitchen Conditions Don’t Make A Good Restaurant
“The restaurant I worked at last (and where my fiancé works presently) is a veritable cornucopia of bad decisions.
They just recently jacked the price of every item on the menu up by a dollar. Even the sides. And then cut the size of the sides in half. The food is crap because the kitchen is in crap condition. The ingredients are crap because the owner won’t shell out the money to buy good ones. By the same token, he hasn’t realized that if you pay your kitchen workers minimum wage, you are not getting $10/hour work out of them.
Keep in mind, this is a restaurant, not a McDonald’s or something. The kitchen temp gets up to 150 or 160F in the summer (and over 100F in the winter). The fryers are broken. I watched a steam table explode on a line cook. It started an electrical fire. If he hadn’t had his great reflexes, it would have been awful.”
Gyros Are Not Quite Italian
“The Italian joint down the street from my place in Illinois got rid of all their pasta dishes. Just…gone. They were delicious, too. What do they add to the menu to fill the now empty space? A gyro. A freaking gyro at an Italian restaurant.
It’s fine, I only went there for the hot waitresses.”
Their Coupon Policy Is A Bit Too Extreme For His Tastes
“I went to a deli by my house to pick up an order for four people. We all got a hoagie, and we had two buy one get one free coupons. I tried to use it, they said no, I could only use one. I actually would have been okay with that, but the guy then said, ‘If you only pay for two, then leave and come back in, I can do it for you.’ So I asked why not just ring it up separate. No. I had to walk outside and come back. I told him that was stupid, he said he doesn’t care. I told him to screw himself and left. Got the hoagies somewhere else.
I get that you have to do things a certain way, and I’m fine with that. But don’t tell me to walk outside and come back in just to use a coupon.”
“We Look Like A Teenager Going Through An Identity Crisis”
“Our restaurant owner thought it was a lovely idea to change our outfits from work related attire to white denim jeans and cheap long sleeve shirts, probably made from cotton and cardboard.
We have no flow of color in the place, we are like a teenager with an identity crisis. Our tables are red, our napkins are pink/brown, our shirts are a striped creamsicle orange, our pants, shoes, and belt are white. It’s ridiculous.”
The Buffet’s Folly Was Their Victory
“We found a coupon for a local all-you-can-eat Chinese food buffet restaurant in the back of our college’s student calendar they were handing out. The coupon gave you lunch or dinner for $5 or something, assuming you bought a soft drink. This was quite a deal, since they normally charged $12 or $15. They forgot to print an expiration date on the coupon, or limit the number of person per party who could use one. As soon as I found the coupon in the back of the student calendar booklet, I ran back to the pallet where they were distributing the planners and grabbed as many as I could carry on several trips. Nobody else was interested in the student planner, so the school was happy to have them gone. The Chinese buffet, however, was not as happy, as we ate there several times a week for the next many months.”
The New Menu Didn’t Work Out As Well As Expected
“There is a little hole-in-the-wall Mongolian BBQ place in my town that has been awesome for 20+ years. The owners were a husband/wife team who worked every day. There wasn’t once in 20 years I went in when the wife wasn’t working, and she always knew us.
A few months ago, I went in to find the Mongolian grill thing dismantled, and the wife urging us to try their new ‘menu.’ Apparently, the BBQ had high food costs as they lost a lot of business in the economy, and they were trying to convert to a regular ‘orange chicken/sweet & sour pork’ type restaurant.
It was terrible. Never been back.
I want to recommend them for Kitchen Nightmares or something…”
Thanks For The Water Bottle, Denny’s…
“The Denny’s near my house started putting water bottles on their tables. No price tag, I don’t even think I saw an advertisement for them, it’s just a water bottle on the table. The idea was supposed to be that you’d see it and want to buy it, but everyone just assumed someone had left their water and no one touched it. Even the waitress thought it was stupid.
Also, a cup of water is free. So I guess by paying for a bottle you have the option of taking it outside with you.”
The Best Chicken Tenders Ever Disappeared When The Owner Got Married
“Ugh, this makes me sad. A bar I used to go to had the best, and I mean best, chicken tenders I have ever had in my life and a lot of people agreed with me. Well, the owner got married and his new wife did not like the menu, so she raised the prices and changed the food to cheap crap. She got upset when she asked me why I never order food now and I told her if I’m hungry, I’ll go next door and eat.”
These Hippies Chose The Wrong Location
“I live in the most rural and poorest county in Ohio. A couple of hippies opened a place in town that sells health food. Like butternut squash chili and berry salad. They are only open 6 hours a day. I’ve never seen a single person eat there. They’ve been open for over a year. Amazes me they just keep pumping money into something obviously no one in the area wants.”
“I Had To Leave The Counter, I Was So Aghast”
“So I used to work at this ice cream place that shared some space with a deli. Same counter, different owners kind of deal. Anyway, this lady came into the deli and asked the guy for a #4 or whatever, but could she have it on a kaiser roll instead of an onion roll. The deli guy’s response, ‘Sorry ma’am, we only have onion rolls now. Too many people were switching to the kaiser roll and my onion rolls were going bad.’ I had to leave the counter and call my dad, I was so aghast.”
“That Was The Last Day We Went There For Breakfast”
“A couple jobs ago, my co-workers and I would always go to the wrap place next door because they had a great deal on a breakfast wrap and a coffee. There were quite a few of us, and we would literally be there every morning because the deal was too good to pass up.
After a couple months, we went inside and their prices had more than doubled. Apparently, the head office saw that they were doing a lot of business, figured the demand was high in the area, and they jacked up the prices.
That was the last day we went there for breakfast.”
After Meal Lingerers Not Welcome
“My husband and I get together with another couple for breakfast every Friday morning, and for the longest time we went to this one diner. We’d eat, then sit and chat for a while. We always tipped our waitresses generously for putting up with us (usually about 30%, sometimes closer to 50% if we didn’t get big meals) and usually had a good rapport with our waitresses. And yes, all you cynics, it probably had to do with the fact that we tipped so much. And if we noticed that people were waiting to be seated, we’d leave a bit early and just chat in the parking lot or whatever. Generally try to have a good time, but be less of a headache as we could.
Anyway, we get to the diner one day and sit down, and when our waitress came over to get our drink order, she said really quietly that management had changed and with that, the policy. Now the waitresses are supposed to try and get each table out in under an hour. The reasoning was that they could seat more people and people are happier in an emptier (quieter) restaurant. What it ended up doing, however, was pissing off the customers because the waitresses were being made to essentially ignore their tables after thirty minutes.
The waitress who told us about the new policy and another one quit after that because they weren’t making enough in tips.”