Sending food back

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Greymo
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/30 17:14:25 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by Burgerman1

Catracks, I appreciate what you are saying and really do agree with you, but you are making me out to be the bad guy, and I assure you that I am far from it. I do have 4 restaurants, one of those has been open for 44 years, all are very successful. We are known for having the "Best Burger in the Carolinas!" Most patrons don't complain about additional charges or the other items I wrote about because they perfer good food and service for a reasonable price.

But the people that I spoke of are the exceptions. There is a big difference between being cheap (frugal) and cheap & demanding.

We give seniors a 15% discount, not the usual 10% that most restaurants seem to perfer. We do take care of our senior citizens because they are a growing part of our business. What I don't appreciate is when they want the 15% discount on a promotional item that has already been discounted 20-25%. Granted it doesn't happen very often, it just amazes me are the individuals that think that we owe them both discounts because they are senior citizens. If they are in a position that they must be concerned about such a small amount, then they shouldn't be dining out.

And as far as the cherries, let me do the math for you. For a serving of two marchino cherries is an approximate cost of .10. For a 4oz cup, which is approximately 10-12 cherries, then the cost is appox .50 to .60. For a 16oz drink that wipes out a majority of the profit, and drinks are something a restaurant depends on for a large portion of its profit. And BTW, that 4oz cup of cherries costs .50 and we only charge .50.

I do appreciate the fact that you want to treat your child and take care of the waitress, but as in any business, if you desire more product or services then you should be prepared to pay the price and not complain when the total is presented.

Please don't fool yourself, every restaurant that you enter is concerned about portion control and the amount of revenue generated. And as I said before, the examples I made are a minority and not majority, but thank you for reinforcing my point and showing how some people can be cheap and demanding.

I use these forums as a learning tool and for writing about the foodservice industry. I apologize to everyone for using this forum as a vent for my personal outrage, that was unprofessional and uncalled for.

Burgerman1



Hey! I am on your side, (except for charging for water). I go out to eat all the time and have seen so many people that are "cheap". I say that when people go out to eat, they should expect to pay. I also say that if someone over does it on refills, you have every right to charge. I have run into too many people, over the years, who brag about how much they have gotten "free" in restaurants. It makes me sick. I will go to your restaurant anytime and I will not have a sense of "entitlement" when I patronize your place. I also know that senior citizens can be dreadful (and I am a senior citizen). I have heard them brag about how cheaply they have gotten out of eating out because of "early birds", discounts and the like. I feel sorry for people that own restaurants and I feel sorry for servers who are screwed on their tips for any number of reasons that have nothing to do with their good service.
#61
jeepguy
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/30 20:06:57 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by myway

I don't know. If I go to McD's and they fail to add something or whatever thats one thing. When I go to an alleged 4 star and pay big money for a great steak and it is not to my liking, thats another. If I order Med. rare thats what I expect. I send it back, politely of course, until I am satisfied. I do not however expect to be compt. If they offer something great, I'll take it. But if not that is okay. But I make sure to always be nice. Remember.. you can't see what is going on with your food after it goes back to the kitchen! My wife complains about something it seems everytime we eat out, and that includes McD's! I try to curtail some of her pickiness to no avail. Once at a local steak house her steak was sent back 6 times! So she started making everyone mad. I advised her to cool it, or the next time the steak may come back with some'"extra ingredients" that she would not want.Just food for thought.
I have a co-worker that went through a Mac's drive-thru and ordered one cheeseburger for a snack after shopping. Bun,cheese,dehyd onions,pickle,ketchup,mustard- no meat!!! How STUPID can you be??? He walked in there and they gave him one with meat.He still talks about this.
#62
Billfish
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/30 20:16:18 (permalink)
Ha.I went to a McDonalds drive thru at lunch one time,ordered 6 Mcnuggets.Picked up at the window and drove off.Half a mile down the street,I opened the box (box said "6 McNuggets") to find a box full of scrambled eggs.Bizarre.

#63
dogmeat
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/30 23:50:57 (permalink)
I'm in agreement with Burgerman1 across the board. My new menu has a "onetime" watercharge of .25 which is served in glass, probably more of a "breakage" fee than anything. Calculate the ice,straw,lemon,water, and the labor to bring it to the table and refill it and we probably are still losing money, but recovering cost.

We have taken a 30% markup on bottled water products which keeps them in line with normal purchasing and that is working well for people who appreciate the product.

Luckily the majority of our customers are a happy lot.

#64
Catracks
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/31 10:12:55 (permalink)
Okay Burgerman. I understand. I guess I was talking about one extra cherry in a more expensive drink, not .60 worth of extra in an under $2 drink. I still love marchino cherries. I used to see them in green, yellow, purple ...

I'm still puzzled over the water. Someone mentioned rising costs of bottled water. The ONLY time I will buy bottled water is when we go camping. I think investing in a good filter would be better than serving stuff that is often filtered city water anyway. I don't pay for it for home use (except water bill of course) and I won't pay for it out. I hate the idea of bottled water. It's so frou frou.

Yes, some people feel entitled and to some seniors and other people for that matter, it is a challenge and a game to them to fet all the freebies they can and then take advantage. No class.

I misunderstood.

Best burger in the Carolinas? I've been searching for a good buger, but I'm in So. Cal. Alas.

Oversided portions? I don't mind at all. I wrap 'em up and take them home. Yum! I love burger joints who have massive orders of fries. We throw the bag in the middle of the table and have at it!
#65
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/31 10:29:42 (permalink)
Dogmeat and Burgerman,
I would assume things have changed greatly since my departure from having a brick and mortar place six, no, eight years ago. I built water into the mix on the front end. Someone wanted only water we just filled a larger glass and provided lemons in a dish. We ALWAYS offered bottled water at a very reasonable cost, but our local water from the tap was very fine and unless they wished gas we recommended the local water.

My biggest problem was convincing my staff that did not mean they (the customer) were cheap but did not want dirty water (tea) or HFCS soda pop. In Europe you order water w/ gas or w/o, here you get a truely sorry product when you order bottled water. The imported water is overpriced and the domestic product is crap. Maybe some localities have bad tap water but I cannot comment on this problem. Basically, ordering water w/ dinner is a health issue not a cost one.

Sending food back is a difficult item for an owner. For a steak it is a no brainer...customer ordered it wounded, good vet could bring it back and we put a tough grey slab in front of him...comp the customer, BS w/ them and make a friend for life.

On other items judgement is the key. I must confess to making judgement calls on this area. Bitch about a wonderful cream sauce wearing a Hickey Freeman suit and I'm MUCH more likely to work a deal. T-shirt, jeans and two days since a shave...tough **** and call the cops. I'm not in California and don't have to deal w/ the rich and famous. If the item isn't as described on the menu...we can work something out but you order chicken and then want it w/o chicken...pony up the bucks.

Sorry for the rant.
#66
dogmeat
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/31 12:18:59 (permalink)
Hello V960, the major change would be your costs to provide that service. Lemons have hit $30 a case, limes were .50 each not very long ago and the water glass that costs you $2.75 is being washed by your paid labor in a machine that uses three gallons of chemicals that are around $50 each. The ice is being filtered and produced by a $3000 machine.

I sold Hickey-Freeman suits at a clothing store in Charleston,S.C. during my college days. On the rack $135 and custom orders might get to $350 depending on the material, today $1200 and up!

Show me where the free cup/free ice display is were you buy fast gas or convience items. I was in one the other day and watched a customer be charged for a bag, they didn't buy anything but gas.

When the "free lemon & lime" truck pulls up to my place I'll be giving them away too.

"Free" water is headed the way of Green Stamps.

#67
Salustra
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/31 12:23:30 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by Billfish

Ha.I went to a McDonalds drive thru at lunch one time,ordered 6 Mcnuggets.Picked up at the window and drove off.Half a mile down the street,I opened the box (box said "6 McNuggets") to find a box full of scrambled eggs.Bizarre.

That's VERY strange because McD's around here don't even serve breakfast and non-breakfast menu at the same time...
#68
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/01/31 15:17:48 (permalink)
Dogmeat,
By the way your handle reminds me of my travels to Korea and the meat of choice there. My wife was our book keeper and tells me we paid less than eight dollars for lemons and about ten for limes.

Our servers would ask for refreshment orders before bringing out water. We tossed alot of lemon wedges back then. Interesting that you filter your water before the ice machine.

My last HF cost about what you mentiond but I feel their quality has dropped since HSM bought them a number of years ago. I'm a consultant now and have to keep up appearances. There is a shop on 47th @ Lexington in NYC that sells last years HF's for about $400. I buy a few each year from them. Bergdorf Goodman ties 3/$25 also.

Your comments make me glad I sold out a few years ago. I sold out to my chef who hanged himself three years later. Thank God for insurance.
#69
roossy90
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/03 17:21:40 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by dogmeat

Hello V960, the major change would be your costs to provide that service. Lemons have hit $30 a case, limes were .50 each not very long ago and the water glass that costs you $2.75 is being washed by your paid labor in a machine that uses three gallons of chemicals that are around $50 each. The ice is being filtered and produced by a $3000 machine.

I sold Hickey-Freeman suits at a clothing store in Charleston,S.C. during my college days. On the rack $135 and custom orders might get to $350 depending on the material, today $1200 and up!

Show me where the free cup/free ice display is were you buy fast gas or convience items. I was in one the other day and watched a customer be charged for a bag, they didn't buy anything but gas.

When the "free lemon & lime" truck pulls up to my place I'll be giving them away too.

"Free" water is headed the way of Green Stamps.




In Florida, when my customers would order water with lemon, we called it a Boca cocktail...(*after Boca Raton)
Usually the seniors would order those.....
#70
kland01s
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/03 18:09:02 (permalink)
It irrates me that people look down on people who just order water. I hate pop of any kind and most ice teas in restaurants irrates my stomach, I do drink huge amounts of water, albeit sometimes with scotch in it, but water is my drink of preference.
#71
dogmeat
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/04 08:09:31 (permalink)
I have never "looked down" on people that order water but I feel that an accounting is in order for the future. I drink alot of water also, traveled to Europe lately?

Actually I have seen people who drink bottled water become very opinionated about who's drinking what particular brand and where.

I don't remember exactly how long ago it was that Consumer Reports started doing comparisons of different types of water, but the results were interesting. Out of ten or twelve tested the number #1 winner was, drumroll please..... New York city tapwater.
#72
kland01s
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/04 08:27:41 (permalink)
I would not mind paying for water, I frequently go through 3-4 glasses in a meal and I know it's extra work for the servers. I appreciate their attentitiveness and tip well for it. I'm not a bottle water person, at home we drink water purchased by the gallon from the local health store, I refill smaller bottles to carry in the car. The water in my home is hooked up to the softener so it is very salty, I should have that changed but never have.
#73
roossy90
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/04 20:44:53 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by kland01s

It irrates me that people look down on people who just order water. I hate pop of any kind and most ice teas in restaurants irrates my stomach, I do drink huge amounts of water, albeit sometimes with scotch in it, but water is my drink of preference.


I dont look down on people that order water. Did I say I did?

I meant nothing bad by making that statement, and If you found it offensive, then I am sorry.
It is just that in Florida, there are MANY seniors there.
I am getting up there myself, BTW.
(well.. lets just say I am over 50)
I order water half the time with my food, and the other half I order iced tea. Although, I dont ask for lemon in my water, just my iced tea.
It was just a name that someone came up with.

But I do get upset when someone orders water with "extra lemon's", and pours sugar in it to make their own lemonade, when, it being on the drink menu, they could have ordered it and PAID for it.

That is cheap.. Not the basic water drinker!

#74
morningglory
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/05 00:24:13 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by roossy90

quote:
Originally posted by kland01s

It irrates me that people look down on people who just order water. I hate pop of any kind and most ice teas in restaurants irrates my stomach, I do drink huge amounts of water, albeit sometimes with scotch in it, but water is my drink of preference.


I dont look down on people that order water. Did I say I did?

I meant nothing bad by making that statement, and If you found it offensive, then I am sorry.
It is just that in Florida, there are MANY seniors there.
I am getting up there myself, BTW.
(well.. lets just say I am over 50)
I order water half the time with my food, and the other half I order iced tea. Although, I dont ask for lemon in my water, just my iced tea.
It was just a name that someone came up with.

But I do get upset when someone orders water with "extra lemon's", and pours sugar in it to make their own lemonade, when, it being on the drink menu, they could have ordered it and PAID for it.

That is cheap.. Not the basic water drinker!




Just to get my dog in the fight.....just joking, but to state my views. I really hate to be charged $1.75 for an iced tea, which is what I drink, at home, or water. I think the mark up is outrageous.

In any event, I usually ask for water, if I request anything at all. I would NOT mind a surcharge, because I know that it costs money, just to keep a business open, not to mention staff, and cleaning glasses, etc. AND, I never expect lemon, (but it is nice) NOR would I think of using sugar or substitutes.

I make my own iced tea at home, for pennies per glass, buying those industrial strength Tetley Tea Bags, or whatever from Costco, and it costs me pennies per gallon. I guess my point is, how do businesses justify $ 1.75/glass for iced tea?

Boy, I sound cranky tonight! If nothing else to redeem myself, I respect those of you who cater to the needs and whims of the public. I rarely send food back. I guess I am lucky to have someone cooking for me.

Blessing to you all, who deal with the public, on a daily basis.

Enjoy the superbowl, or whatever is happening, tomorrow

MG
#75
Catracks
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/06 13:41:00 (permalink)
quote:
But I do get upset when someone orders water with "extra lemon's", and pours sugar in it to make their own lemonade, when, it being on the drink menu, they could have ordered it and PAID for it.


My grandfather used to do this. Many depression era folks do. They are geared that way. I've seen 1000 island with ketchup, mayo and relish packets on top of the lettuce and tomato from the burger. I suppose they should've ordered a salad.

I understand the need to turn a profit from your restaurant, but anything seen as miserly will lose you customers (I do hope the poster was kidding about the coin ice machine).

I went to a place that had obviously bisected a pickle spear (Bob forbid you get a whole spear) and watered down the ketchup. I never went back and told friends to steer clear.

I'm still laughing about charging for water.
#76
nvb
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/06 15:02:54 (permalink)
quote:
Just to get my dog in the fight.....just joking, but to state my views. I really hate to be charged $1.75 for an iced tea, which is what I drink, at home, or water. I think the mark up is outrageous.


Yep, I'll agree, but without those mark ups you could have to pay an extra charge if you wanted catsup with those fries. Extra for sauce with the BBQ and don't think about using a toothpick without leaving a penny.

In my place the tea or soda is $1.25 for all you want. Don't exactly know what tea cost me for a glass, but soda is about a nickle. I have to have the mark up because of the catsup, hot sauces, pickles, onions, peppers and relish that I don't charge for. Ice water? It's free with a meal, but just walk in and order one will cost you $.50.
#77
Michael Hoffman
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/06 15:29:19 (permalink)
I expect water with my meals. However, I do not want lemons in it, and I do not want a straw. And I'll be damned if I'll pay for it.
#78
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/06 16:41:02 (permalink)
Roossy90,
Making their own lemonade? Comical, absurd and truely sad. We had a local homeless guy who always wanted to do some work who would ask for a bowl of hot water and ketschup so he could make his own tomato soup. We would always tell him we had leftovers so he didn't need to mix up his own soup.

#79
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/06 16:42:31 (permalink)
Son Jaab,
Still counting quarters instead of dollars?
#80
bassrocker4u2
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/07 08:12:39 (permalink)
slick, soda cost you a nickel? i sure would love to have your supplier. we pay about 50 bucks for five gallon of syrup. works out to 35cent per glass.....22ounce plus free refill. iced tea is much better cost, until the 5 pound of sugar is added....(deep south).
one regular, adk for an entire half cup of sugar to be melted into a cup of water, then added to our already sweetened (mud) iced tea.
diabetic in the making..heehee
we usually say....there goes the profit on that one...
#81
nvb
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/07 08:51:39 (permalink)
I use a BIB mixer. Since I buy products from Coke they maintain my mixer for free. I have them check the levels of mix 4-5 time a year. It can get off and cost you out the wazoo if you're not careful. When they calibrate it and get it right you end up with the best tasing product, too.
#82
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/07 09:58:38 (permalink)
I think we have gone beyond the "sending food back" beginning but I would like to make a simple comment. Americans have come to expect certain things to be "free". Water at a restaurant, ice at a hotel and mints at the counter of a meat and three. They know they're paying for them...they just don't want to see a line item charges for it.

Do we line item an extra napkin? A side order of ranch dressing or mayo w/ french fries (freedom fries to be pc)? They all add to our costs but but to charge for them would leave a customer so mad it would be stupid to do so.

In Europe and south of the border the tap water is very close to poison. They know they have to pay for water and their bottled water is very good. Here it is terrible unless imported.
#83
dogmeat
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/07 11:10:27 (permalink)
The "reality" of cost is a very important factor in the survival of a business. These costs have changed at a furious a pace, indeed much faster than most people update menu pricing. Some of what is being discussed is a reflection of that fact and the public demands have prompted some of the mentioned actions.

What to do when someone orders 3-4 sauces with a chicken appetizer or an order of fries? I'm not talking about ketchup or mayo, I'm talking about salad dressings (house made)and speciality sauces, ESPECIALLY with to-go orders. What are the big chains doing in regards to this situation?

Yes water is free but the cost is incurred when you get it out of the ground and in our case, serve it. Interesting quote from a very independent govenment agency "Florida doesn't have a water-supply problem,Florida has a cheap-water supply problem".

Everyone will pay more for water.
#84
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/07 11:44:02 (permalink)
Dogmeat,
Water is not free. Even w/ a well you havee to buy a new pump every six to eight years, electricity to run the pump, build a well house, and maintain the pipes. This doesn't even begin to include washing the glass, making the ice or getting it to the customer.

My point is the old saying "perception is reality". The customer expects water for "free" and we have to provide it, IMHO.

Got to go to lunch now but I will expand on my thoughts in an hour or so...B'day today so lunch is on wifie and who knows about later!!!!!!
#85
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/07 16:42:51 (permalink)
Had lunch a nice little place in Salisbury, NC today, Rick's BBQ. Highly recommended...makes most of his stuff from scratch. Hand patted burgers, homemade dressings, most vegies are fresh (his fried okra is a frozen product in the winter) and the biscuits are made from scratch.

Anyway had a nice conversation w/ Rick regarding the subjects at hand. Returning food...he doesn't argue just replaces it. They do it again they hit the bricks.

Water and extra sauces...he builds it in on the front end. This place is, sorry Rick, a NASCAR hole in the wall. NASCAR posters everywhere, wrecked racecar quarter panels hanging from the walls and enough pictures of Dale Earnhardt Sr. to qualify as a shrine. You can hardly get into the place at lunch, a burger is $2, fries are $1.50 and lunch for my wife and I (I had a beer, it's my b'day) was less than $10.

Rick must be doing something right...he has a King Ranch Ford pick up worth around fifty grand around back. A nice catering rig is also around the back. We ended up spending around 2 1/2 hrs BSing about brick and mortar VS. catering VS. fairs etc. I'm actually going to help him out on a few catering jobs to get a very small catering project from him at cost. Lovely what can happen w/ a little discussion.
#86
bassrocker4u2
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/08 07:31:13 (permalink)
happy b'day to ya~~~~~~~~~
#87
V960
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/09 17:40:32 (permalink)
Dogmeat,
Had to add this comment. Just got back (it's about 5:30 EST here) from an afternoon meeting w/ a group from Korea. I've known the CEO for about fifteen years and he went to GREAT effort to bring me a package (about forty pounds) of dogmeat. My wife, kids and surely our dogs are horrified but he knows I eat dog on each trip to Korea, so bring the guy some dog...right?

What the hell am I going to do w/ this package? I put dog in any pot my wife will throw out the pot the next day. Ah the trials of international business.
#88
roossy90
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/09 20:52:41 (permalink)
quote:
Originally posted by V960

Dogmeat,
Had to add this comment. Just got back (it's about 5:30 EST here) from an afternoon meeting w/ a group from Korea. I've known the CEO for about fifteen years and he went to GREAT effort to bring me a package (about forty pounds) of dogmeat. My wife, kids and surely our dogs are horrified but he knows I eat dog on each trip to Korea, so bring the guy some dog...right?

What the hell am I going to do w/ this package? I put dog in any pot my wife will throw out the pot the next day. Ah the trials of international business.


I just put my yorkie on a leash!
Ya'll just stay away from him!
I will be watching..
Plus he is almost 12, and he would be too tough for you!
Hmmmph!
LOL
Take it to your local Chinese joint and tell them Happy New year..
#89
AndreaB
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RE: Sending food back 2006/02/09 21:02:52 (permalink)
Yack and stay away from my German Shepherd too! He's a huge thing (not fat but just big) and weighs about 115 lbs. so there's lots of meat on him. He'll never be human food, only worm food one of these days!

Andrea
#90
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