28 September 2007

the correspondence years...

a note that I quickly scrawled on a scrap of paper and left at the table we were sitting at:

Dear Franny's,
Great place! Amazing food, wonderful service. However, we were not so impressed by the "short five to ten minute wait" we were greeted with. We can SEE it's just a scam to get people to drop some extra bucks on drinks at the bar before being seated.
With about two/thirds of restaurant empty when we arrived it seems ridiculous to make people wait at the crowded bar (where they feel pressured into buying cocktails they don't want). An explanation would be appreciated.
Dot & Friend

a hasty reply via email:

I am very sorry that you felt you were scammed at franny's. I do assure you though that we do not scam people in order to make extra money at the bar. Because we do not take reservations there is indeed times when people will have to wait for a table even when there are some open. Restaurants that take reservations can control the pace of seating and amount of orders that go to the kitchen. Because we do not take reservations it is more difficult for us to control this pace and ensure quality when we have a high volume evening. When our our garden is open we add an extra twenty seats to the restaurant and the kitchen does not gain any extra space in order to prepare food, so therefore we must slow the pace of seating. This is one of the occasions on which the host is instructed to go on a 5 or 10 minute wait in order to give the kitchen some time to prepare all of the orders that have come in. The other occasion that the host will be on a wait while there are open tables is when several tables are open at once and she has find all of the people on her wait list and seat them in order. I'm glad that you like franny's and enjoyed the food and service. I'm sorry that the host didn't give you this explanations herself, but it is often difficult to do this with every guest, as it usually just causes confusion. I hope you'll accept our apology, but also our explanation and that we'll see you again soon.
Sarah G.
General Manager

blah blah blah! still, i felt like i'd been a bit harsh so sent Sarah a more thoughtful reply:

Dear Sarah,
It seems I jumped to the wrong conclusion. Your explanation of the staggered seating makes perfect sense. I'm sorry about the note I left, I'm sure I was just drunk (having started the evening with a large cocktail on an empty stomach).


Mars said...

well aren't you a mole!

kiki said...

you fell for it!
the staggered seating isn't going to make it easier on the kitchen!
it's just going to make you buy more drinks.

if you have groups of people coming in at 1.00, 1.10, 1.30 and 1.45 and then stagger them by 15 minutes, all you're doing is making them order at 1.15, 1.25, 1.45 and 2.
it won't effect the kitchen at all


Anonymous said...

if the staff had to convey sarah g's explanation, by the time they had finished it would be a moot point.

Original Mel said...

No, it is a scam. We used ot do the same thing when I (briefly) worked at a Sydney restaurant. Staggering schmaggering. They just want you to drink alcohol and then order more food cause you're pissed and famished.

eleanor bloom said...

Bloody 'ell. There's scams everywhere these days!

I 'as bin educated now re these restaurant ones, thank you. (Mind you, don't they do the same in restaurants without bars??)

I thought your slightly agro message was a bit of bar karma for them, but obviously they're just buggers and asked for it! Next time write a worse message... in blood.* Heh.

* well, tomato sauce

dot said...

i knew it was a scam!

i thought it was a scam, but then i wasn't sure... but now i know it is a scam!