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You're dissatisfied with your food at a restaurant, what do you do?

  • Let the server know - but don't let them fix it

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Ask for a discount / remove item from bill

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Say nothing - but leave a lower tip

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    10
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Discussion Starter #1
So we've all gone out to eat and received food that is improperly cooked or we're just dissatisfied with. We have a few options, but what do we do about it? Please answer the poll and then feel free to write comments in the thread.
 

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It makes all the difference whether the problem is improper cooking by normal standards, or personal dissatisfaction. If the former, and it's a reputable establishment such that it's unlikely the chef will spit in the food served you as replacement, send it back to the kitchen specifying what the problem is. If the latter, diners-out when they dine out assume the risk of being served something not to their own taste; but that's not the kitchen's fault, nor should the establishment be expected to subsidize someone's pickiness or weird taste. In this case, don't eat what you don't like, pay the tab like a civilized human being, and go your merry way.
 

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@OrganizedChaos You seem convinced that INFJs goal of life is to help others and you're trying to prove that by creating polls that are supposed to show how selfness we are.

This poll cannot prove anything since :

-90% of the customers wouldn't be bothered enough to complain about food they didn't like, regardless of their types
-90% of the customers would definitely complain if there was something disgusting like a spit, regardless of their types

I would also add that you definitely do not understand how Fe works. I know several INFJs and none of them including myself have their own goals centered around helping others. (I say this because I saw in the other thread you created that apparently we came to earth to help people and that we take absolute joy in that)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
This poll cannot prove anything since :

-90% of the customers wouldn't be bothered enough to complain about food they didn't like, regardless of their types
-90% of the customers would definitely complain if there was something disgusting like a spit, regardless of their types
90% of all stats are made up
 

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If it's simply a difference in taste preferences, I do nothing since I ordered it. If it's poorly cooked, it's sent back.
 

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14 Years working as a Chef. I only send back when there are really bad mistakes like cold food that should be hot, burned or very undercooked/raw. I don't have issue with dealing with people and I know others have, mainly introverts. One time my INFP girlfriend got really burned tartlet for the dessert and I could hear it sizzling when the waiter brought it. She couldn't complain so I switched mine with her and dealt with it. They offered us both desserts for free. If I'm eating out and there is a hair in my food I put it on the side of the plate and keep eating. I would never assume someone is spitting in my food since food and complaints are taken seriously here.
 
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As long as it's not durian, I don't care. But bring me a chanee when I pay for a kradum thong and I shall mercilessly ... eat the chanee and order a gan yao.

I miss my stash :sad:
 

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Improperly cooked food is dangerous food when under cooked or even raw, sending it back is better than getting caught and written up by an inspector or worse someone gets sick. Haven been a baker honest mistakes do happen and there are bad days so there is always two sides to this.
 

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I don't believe I've ever been in that situation. Sometimes I may not be satisfied with the quality, but that doesn't mean there's anything actually wrong with the food, it simply is below the standards of either a known and good restaurant or one which, by personal and critical reviews, could have been expected to be better in some way.

In this case, I would leave an average or slightly lower tip, as I would if the service was not up to standards. I would certainly eat it though. If I were in a situation in which the food seemed potentially bad (could make me sick), I would not eat it, and I probably would not stay at that place either.

I have been in some situations where while not poorly cooked (ie could be bad for me, as I've interpreted the question) the food was pretty unappetizing. The prime example of this would be cafeterias at music camps. Usually in those cases I simply avoid eating as much as possible, but in one camp they made everyone get quite a lot of food. I would eat the entire plate even if I were on the verge of gagging, I can't stand to waste anything to that degree. (I realize neither of those scenarios are incredibly healthy, but that's beside the point for now.) I've come across far too many people who will throw away half a plate of food because they either thoughtlessly got too much or they didn't really like it. This is very distressing to me, to think of the waste that people simply aren't even aware of in their daily lives.

Given your late threads I would like to state also that I do not believe there is any reason to think the answers here could have anything logical to do with MBTI, in case you were heading in that direction.
 

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My parents once owned & personally managed a restaurant in Australia, and when we were kids my family ate out a LOT.
They diligently trained us how to be good, but not passive, customers.

Here's the thing with sending back food, making a complaint known, or calling over a manager when you aren't being heard.
It helps the restaurant.

Customer service functions best in a dynamic relationship with those they serve... both listening to issues and responding to them.

When customers become mute... guess what happens? Service continues to slide down that hill until new customers don't enjoy their experience either.
Once a restaurant gets a bad reputation, it dies... the staff is out of work and the owners loose considerable money.
That's why the cruelest thing you can do to an establishment is keep necessary information to yourself and just never go back.

Really good service, really successful businesses, you will see the manager actively strolling around and proactively asking the guests how everything is. This isn't searching for compliments. They want to know what's wrong, every little detail.
Good service is a product of incessant, dutiful refinement. It doesn't happen by accident or by instinct, but by numerous small corrections.

So yeah, when I go to a cheap place I'm usually satisfied if food is simply edible. I would still tell them if there were cooking issues because I don't want someone to die and the place get sued for everything the oweners are worth.

But when I go somewhere nice, I pay attention to more detail and give management more feedback if they solicit my opinion, or if I have justification to initiate a complaint.
One excellent reason to complain at a nice place is if food doesn't match the description. Are other customers going to be happy with that? What happens when the food critic shows up and next thing they get a terrible review over something simple to fix?

As my parents instilled in me though, the idea is how you complain.
It should always be polite, in quiet tones so other diners don't hear, and it should never involve blame. It doesn't matter how the food got messed up, one should never assume it was intentional. You should assume the restaurant wants to please you, because even if a particular staffer doesn't care, the owner surely does.

Also, follow the chain of command. First bring your issue up to your server. If they are good at their job they will advocate for you, and this gives you a chance to reward them with extra in the tip.
If a server doesn't help you graciously, then you've stumbled on an even bigger problem for the establishment. So now you give the server an opportunity to bring the manager for you, and if that doesn't happen then you go to the front desk and request them yourself. Once you have their ear, keep in mind this is a new interaction from the manager's point of view, so start fresh in explaining your problem, and don't get upset with them too quickly.
If they don't help you or are particularly rude, which is rare, you can look the owner up online and give them a call. You may be the only person providing a true window into what's going on in their business when they aren't there, and your complaint may be the only thing standing between them and bankruptcy.


In my view, a truly kind person let's others know what's wrong in time for them to take action to correct it before it bites them in the ass. Just standing back is the jerk move where you want them to fail.

I spent time as a server and manager myself at various places, and I was always happy to fix stuff. What I was not happy with was people waiting until they were royally pissed off and then chewing me out, or going way above my head before I had the chance to show I cared.
 

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I used to be very 'crazy' about my Espresso
,too much water? ,too acidic?.....?
,but nowadays I really work on expanding 'the a**hole ideal world' of myself


__so if I start to think there is something that I don't feel familiar with my taste bud ,
,I will ask myself some question

1)first 'is it really improperly cooked?'
'is there more than one way to cook that food properly?'
(I mean some restaurants have different 'definition' of how to make a fried tofu
esp. the so-called 'fusion' restaurant)

2)'If it s really improperly ,is it acceptable?
(some food hygiene cannot be compromised
,I cannot eat the food with cockroach!__haha)

3)lastly if I feel like I have to really have make a comment on THAT food
,my dad 's face will appear and say 'the human eats to live ,DO NOT live to eat'__haha


PS.however, I will never go back to the coffee shop that serve 'too much water!' espresso
(if I have another choice__haha)
(is there another way to make an espresso?__haha)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
My parents once owned & personally managed a restaurant in Australia... They diligently trained us how to be good, but not passive, customers... As my parents instilled in me though, the idea is how you complain.
Ah, this is helpful insight, and very interesting. So @Sour Roses do you think your belief that complaining "helps the restaurant" is yours, or your parents?

You mentioned that you were "diligently trained" by your parents. This makes me wonder how much of our personality is our own, and how much is the result of parental indoctrination, not to mention PTSD and/or physical, sexual or psychological abuse.
 

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Never really been in this situation. At least not one where it was all that memorable.

In the most similar situation to what you've mentioned, being served unsatisfactory food, I simply pay however much it costs and leave my barely eaten plate for them to see it. I'm not going to try and walk away without paying as I don't see the point in causing that kind of grief for myself.

Plus, we don't really do tips where I live so there's no need for me to think about that aspect. I've had under-cooked food. But as I don't eat a lot of meat, almost never, it's usually under-cooked vegetables or dough that is the issue - nothing that would kill me or make me sick.

If I hypothesise about what I would do if I were given under-cooked meat, I would point it out for safety reasons but I wouldn't not order for any more food or ask them to try again. I'd leave because if the service team can't get it right the first time, I'm not waiting on them when I can spend my time and money elsewhere.
 

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I'll politely let the waiter/establishment know, then see what they're going to do about it. After I let them know there's a problem then the ball is in their court. I generally don't ask or demand for anything to be done unless they provide me with options.

I'm a big fan of giving proper feedback to restaurants so they know what they're doing well and what they're doing poorly. How they handle the situation says how much they care about customer service and if they want repeat business. If the server doesn't seem to care then I might look for their supervisor/manager/business owner and let them know what's going on.

If they take the food back and apologize I'll thank them and probably come back to the place, hoping for a better experience than last time. They saw the problem, they fixed it and all is good. This is my preferred outcome for the situation, I'd like good food and I'm willing to wait longer for it. I'll likely give the same tip I was going to give had everything been fine from the start.

If they acknowledge that the food is poor and take it off the bill, I'll appreciate it but not necessarily want to come back.

If they tell me "that's how it is" or "that's too bad", or do nothing at all, I'll likely not leave a tip and might just walk out with the meal unfinished depending on how dissatisfied I am. Maybe I'm an ass for doing this but you generally have to treat me like an ass before you get it in return.

It's their business and their job to provide a service, if they don't want to do it properly after being informed then that's their call. I highly value professionalism and excellent service, if you have both then you have a loyal customer who will come back, leave good tips and share their good experience with friends/family.

A story of a poor experience tends to spread much further than a good one by nature. Anyone worth their salt that is providing a service knows this.
 

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Unless its a health hazard, I'll eat it and leave my standard 20% tip. Not the waiter's fault. If the beer selection is good and the rest of the food is OK, we'll be back another time.

I recall sending back a meal only once. Scallops so rancid they stunk up the whole room. I might have eaten them, but they were for Mrs Buoyant and she wouldn't touch them. Sending them back saved me a night on the bathroom floor.
 

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If it's undercooked, I'll send it back. Some chefs like rarer steaks than others. I don't want a steak that's too rare, I don't think very rare steaks are very toothsome.

Otherwise, if it's something I ordered because I was interested or curious and decided I didn't like it after the fact, well then that's on me, isn't it?
 

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I don't have a very sophisticated palate, I'll pretty much eat anything. So if I send back food, you know it's gotta be pretty bad. I have sent back food before for being under cooked or cold. If I really don't like the food, though, I just make a mental note and opt to go someplace else next time.
 
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