Best Customer Complaints…..Ever!

| July 20, 2010 | 4 Comments

Well hello my fellow readers. Been a busy summer so far, doing a bit of traveling as well as researching for my future columns. I spent some time on the west coast and realized how generally happy the servers and bartenders are over there. Come to think about it, people in general are much happier over there. I guess when you’re dealing with happy customers, it does make your day a little easier!

I was reminiscing with some co-workers the other day about the best and most bizarre complaints they have received from tables over the years. Some of them were so hilarious I had to share them with you.

One of my personal favorites happened when I was working the breakfast shift a few years ago. Although I’m not sure I agree with the policy, it is the restaurant’s policy not to serve toast with your meal unless requested (for a nominal fee of course); it’s more of an a-la-carte menu, which is how they justify it. This family is seated in my section, and you could tell by looking at them that they were a boat load of fun. I take their order, the food comes out, and immediately I am waved back over.

HIM:  Where’s the toast?

ME:  I’m sorry, sir, but you have to order toast separately.

HIM:  What?

ME:  Can I go ahead and order some for you…white, wheat, rye?

(long pause….wait for it, wait for it….)

HIM:  What kind of PLANET is this that I don’t receive toast with my breakfast?

Here are some other funny complaints I’ve compiled over the years:

  1. A woman returns a dirty martini because she doesn’t like olives.
  2. A customer demands a refund from the coffee shop because his coffee was keeping him awake.
  3. Two older ladies wanted a refund on their ice cream sundae because the ice cream was too cold.
  4. A guy orders onion rings….but hold the onions.
  5. A woman complained about the “house wine” not being made in-house. Seriously? Let me run out back to our vineyard/distillery and grab that for you.
  6. “There’s too much ice in my drink”…hmmm, why don’t you wait about five minutes and maybe the situation will resolve itself.
  7. “I can’t eat this, I’m vegetarian and I ordered the vegetarian pad thai.” “Uh, it is vegetarian.” “What is this then?” “Tofu.” “Oh.”
  8. Can you tell me what’s in the rum and coke?
  9. I’d like to send this bacon cheddar burger back because I didn’t realize it had cheese on it.

I’m sure there are plenty of stories out there for our amusement. Any servers care to share? Or have you been an unreasonable customer? I know there are some good ones out there!

And finally, Springs thought of the day:

5. When taking the order, DON’T ask, for example: If a customer states ONLY lettuce, onions, and cheese, DON’T ASK “Do you not want the pickles or tomatoes?” If they state ONLY, that is what they mean. DON’T WASTE TIME asking something that is being told already

Oh Springs, your inexperience in the service industry is ever-so apparent with this comment. The majority of the time, the customer always asks for extra condiments when their meal arrives. The extra 30 seconds it takes to reconfirm an order ensures that you, as the customer, receive everything you need, and that I, as the server, do not have to make extra trips to the kitchen and cannot be held responsible when you wanted tomatoes that you thought came with the burger but you didn’t get them because you didn’t order them.

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Category: LIFE IN THE AREA, OPINION

About the Author ()

I graduated with an Art degree from a small liberal arts college, did a bit of traveling and moved to Annapolis from Baltimore about seven years ago. I currently manage a well-known Annapolis restaurant, serve and bartend. I live downtown and I like sunsets and long walks on the beach :)