Restaurant Review Dilemma

How far should a reviewer go in punishing a restaurant for below-par service?

Southfork Kitchen is a sustainable seafood restaurant in Bridgehampton, NY.

Mr Cohen went to said fish restaurant and found it packed at holiday time so no table was available as he had not reserved.  He declined an offer to eat at he bar but opted to wait for a table to come free – which took an hour.  By this time the restaurant had run out of some dishes.  His displeasure was aggravated when he found the fish restaurant did not serve red meat. An offer by the owner of a sampler menu for free for all his party was declined.

As was his right, he panned the restaurant on Yelp, TripAdvisor, 27East.com and who knows where else.

We attempted to eat at the restaurant on 12/30/10. We waited a total of two hours and were finally told that they were out of nearly every entree and “would we consider sampling what they had left?” When they couldn’t confirm how long it would take to get “tastings,” we left NEVER TO RETURN TO THIS HORRIBLE PLACE — And the owner came up to us to say it was a “bad night” He was arrogant and didn’t apologize or offer us the opportunity to return comped or discounted. AVOID THIS RESTAURANT.” –Alex C.

How should the owner reply to these reviews? You can tell him at

http://boss.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/03/15/mr-cohen-has-a-complaint/

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2 responses to “Restaurant Review Dilemma

  1. I think JohnnyH has it right when he says:

    “But I’m certainly no fan of sites such as Yelp!, CitySearch and others who make money off of a business model that allows amateur reviewers — at best — and petty, jealous, unethical competitors, at worst, use these sites to trash legitimate, hardworking businesses and such business persons are left with absolutely no good recourse. For precisely these reasons, as a consumer myself, I give these sites very little credence as worth my time to even consult when I go in search of a restaurant, other service or business in my own city.”

    As far as the ‘review’ goes, it’s easy to see that Mr. Cohen has no real cause for his main complaints. Waited for an hour or more? Up & leave. He had the chance to eat at the bar, so why not? He’d have been fed. No red meat on the menu? It’s a FISH restaurant. There’s a clue there…. Questioning the owners business model in such a robust way as to be asked by his friends to ‘tone down his rhetoric’? Unforgiveable. Unless he’s Alan Sugar. Who’s a complete twat anyway. As it would seem, is Mr. Cohen.

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