Worst (potential) customer service

I go out to lunch, dinner or brunch at least three times a week, and thankfully I do not have many restaurant horror stories to share. Of course, I have had my fair share of indifferent or forgetful waitstaff, or rude hosts, or bland dishes. But overall when I go out to eat the level of service I get is decent.

Last night I had my worst restaurant experience, and I didn’t even have to step a foot in the restaurant! It was around 5 p.m., and as we were driving back to Cambridge, we wondered where to go to dinner. I suggested going to Strip-T’s in Watertown. I had been there once before, and I liked it. With all the snowstorm interruptions, I thought  I’d check their website to see if they are open before we drove all the way to Watertown. I googled the restaurant name on my phone, and the search result was their website, which showed on my phone as http://www.stripts.com “Strip-T’s Restaurant… 93 School St Watertown, MA 02472. WELL WILL [sic] BE CLOSED…” I clicked on their website, but it went to a general page without any updated information. I clicked around to other links to see if there was any information related to the “WELL WILL [sic] BE CLOSED”, but since I didn’t see anything I decided to call to see if they were open.

A man answered the phone. I said hello, and asked “are you open for dinner tonight?” And this is how he responded: “No, we’re not, I just like coming here and sitting around and having beers with the boys ’cause I don’t have anything better to do.” Pause. What. The. Hell. Then he said: “I am being sarcastic.” I said “Yeah, very funny”, and hung up. Wow.

Dude answering the phone, really?! Whatever the hell your problem is, I am pretty sure it wasn’t me. So, when I ask if you are open, just say “yes, we are” or “no, we are not” and that would be it. The end. Simple, isn’t it? If you think you are being clever or witty, you are not, you are just being rude. If you are not in the mood to answer the phone, have someone else answer the phone, or have an automated phone system with options for hours, reservations, etc. If you want to be sarcastic, you can do so with the boys while drinking beers. I didn’t call to ask if your restaurant is open because I didn’t have anything better to do, or because I wanted to chat or experience your talent for sarcasm. I called because with all the snowstorm interruptions plus your crappy website that shows no updated helpful information, I thought I’d better check.

Seriously, what the hell. Who interacts with strangers like that, let alone potential customers?  That was the most rude and uncalled for response I have ever received. But if that was their plan, they surely found a pretty effective way to turn away potential customers. Well done.


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