Friday, November 21, 2008

Such a Shame!

Last night, hubs and I went out for dinner at a local Italian restaurant to celebrate our 3rd anniversary a few days early. It was just the two of us, and I was really looking forward to a quiet, intimate, romantic dinner for two.

Unfortunately that wasn't what we were in for.

The restaurant wasn't very busy when we arrived. We obviously needed a table for two. Where'd they put us? In a huge 6-person booth. Nice, huh? The added bonus was that the booth was right under a speaker that was blaring music (and not the quiet, romantic kind) throughout our entire meal. We were sitting mere inches from each other, and yet we had to almost yell to hear each other above the noise. Lovely.

Our waitress was a scary lady. Hubs made the comment during dinner that he thought she could totally kick his butt. I agreed.

As you may recall, I've gone vegetarian. So dining out has become a slight challenge. It's really not too bad, though. I just have to ask a few more questions, find out if entrees can be ordered without chicken or beef, etc. And that's exactly what I did. I ordered a bow-tie pasta with sun-dried tomatoes and mushrooms in a garlic cream sauce, minus the chicken, of course. Hubs had the lasagna. I also ordered a Caesar salad for us to share.

Now, one of my favorite things about Italian restaurants? The Bread! So I was anticipating its arrival as soon as we arrived. No bread. Then we ordered. It still didn't come. Our salad arrived. Still no bread. When the waitress dropped the salad off, she said she'd bring out bread with our entree.

What!?

I don't know about you, but when my entree arrives, I want to eat it. But the 20 minutes or so I'm sitting around waiting for said entree? I'd enjoy some bread! Is that so wrong?

Our entrees are delivered by someone other than our waitress. Several minutes later our waitress walks by and we ask her for some bread, which she finally brings after a few minutes.

Ugh.

Nice, romantic, quiet dinner with hubs with at least mediocre service? Not at all what we got!

The biggest problem I had was that when our check arrived, I immediately looked to see if we were charged the full amount for my pasta. And, of course, we were! Why is that? It clearly states on the menu that chicken can be added to any pasta dish for $6. So why is it I was charged the full amount for a chicken dish without the chicken?! I mean, why not give a $2 discount or something just to make an effort!?

I was irritated enough to at least want to kindly make my point to the restaurant manager as we were leaving. Unfortunately, I couldn't find a single soul anywhere near the exit door. No manager, no hostess, no waitress. No one to say, "Thank you for coming! Have a great night! Come back and see us!" It was really irritating that I couldn't share a simple comment with anyone. However, when I got home I promptly sent an email via the restaurant's website to share my feedback.

Overall it wasn't a bad night--it certainly was nice to spend some alone time with hubs. Maybe I'll give us an anniversary dinner "do-over" and cook dinner for us here at home one night. That way I can control the music, candlelight, and the quality of the food and service.