Too Late to Apologize

Posted: September 22, 2011 in dining out

What a good song.  What a great band.  What an amazing SYTYCD routine, right? Random I known.

Sometimes it’s “too late to apologize.” 
I like to keep my blog fun, light, fit…however I had an encounter with a business today that didn’t leave me feeling great.  It was perplexing and I guess I’m turning it over to you to see what you think. Is it super dramatic? No.  Kinda comical.  I think so.

Here’s a funny encounter my Dad had with a business once.  He & Kyle were attempting to fix something in my house. My Dad called Lowe’s to see if they carried a particular type of bolt/nail/something.  
Dad, “Yes, do you know if you guys carry a blah blah bolt?”
Lowe’s Employee, “I don’t know.”
Dad, “Can you find out please?”
Lowe’s Employee, “No. I’m the only one in the store. Sorry.”
The only one in the store?  Have you ever been to Lowe’s??? I’m pretty sure that guy wasn’t the ONLY one in the store.

But anyway onto today’s situation. (ps- Jersey shore tonight). We have been enjoying all the delights of Magical Dining Month in Orlando.  We had a great meal at Morton’s and are visiting Emeril’s this weekend.  We also went to Ocean Prime with friends.  

Ocean Prime as you may remember was sub-par.  We just didn’t have the experience we were looking for.

I made the reservation through Open Table and after each reservation you get a request to fill out a survey about your dining experience.  I usually fill it out.  Good or bad.  I was honest and told them how I felt about the food, service, and the dang valet stealing money out of our car.

I received an email from their corporate office saying: 

Dear Carissa,
Thank you so much for your feedback submitted to Open Table regarding your experience at Ocean Prime.  I am so sorry we disappointed you and failed to provide the extraordinary experience you should expect when dining at Ocean Prime.  Your feedback will be shared with our Senior Management team immediately.  If you would please be so kind as to send me your telephone number, I would sincerely appreciate the opportunity to apologize personally and invite you back to Ocean Prime as our guest.

 I let the email sit in my inbox for a while.  I don’t really like talking to people in these situations…eventually I decided to give the lady my number.  Maybe it was a good restaurant and I didn’t want to “blog bad-mouth” it for no reason. I hate to complain for the sake of complaining.

Today the chef called me.  It was a weird conversation.  I felt like a tattle-tale.  I told him how we felt like we were treated badly because we were there for a dining meal.  How our food was cold and congealed.  I gave him the 411.
If I won’t eat mashed potatoes…there’s a problem!
Then he said THIS:
“I apologize for that.  I hope you will come back and recommend us to your family and friends.”
I paused.  What? Recommend you?  Didn’t you just hear what I said?
I thought about saying nothing and just saying “ok bye”, but it was just too strange. So I said this…and here’s where you can tell me I was right or a heinous B-word…

“Sir did you not listen to what I just said.  We had a poor meal with poor service.  You are located near many other outstanding restaurants. I’m glad you apologized, however that does not make me want to return nor recommend you to people.”

Chef man, “Well I hope that you will.”


This was just so weird.  Does it not make sense to anyone else? I never know how to handle these situations.

What would you have done?

In my marketing classes at UCF we learned that if a business fails to please you to tell them.  It’s not “complaining” but allowing them knowledge to help their business become better.  Apparently that’s not the way it worked this time.

Love and awkward pauses,

Carissa & Kyle

  1. Wow, that's just too weird. It's like he wasn't even listening to you whatsoever. Rude.

  2. I know! I seriously wanted to be like, "dude are you not listening to me? You're calling me bc of how bad you were..why would I recommend you? You should beg me to know tell everyone to NOT go there!"Ok- maybe that last part was a little harsh! 🙂

  3. I will be in Orlando in November – it is nice to read restaurant reviews so I know where to go and where NOT to go!!

  4. that is weird. i would have called back and talked to someone besides that chef and explained what just happened! how rude!

  5. @allison what part of Orlando are you going to? Some great restaurant's here are Roy's, Seasons 52, Taverna Opa, and Stonewood!

  6. Alexis says:

    HAHA this is still making me laugh! Ya I dont think we need to return. PS i look horrible in that picture LOL. I wish I could have been on the phone with you and the Chef HAHA

  7. Victoria says:

    That is way awkward. Sounds like he wasn't being entirely sincere in his apology if you ask me.

  8. tamara says:

    he was wrong…..and weird! I believe when a restaurant give you bad service, it will continue to do it to others and eventually lose a lot of business… hopefully that chef will get what he deserves in the end.

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