Lookin' Good at 58

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

If You Are Not Doing This You Should

For anyone who is planning to go out and try a new restaurant I find looking on line at the restaurant reviews quite handy. You do not have to if someone has said such and such a place is good but if you are not sure , checking out some comments on these sites where people post their experiences is quite helpful.

Whether you are celebrating a special occasion or traveling a fair distance it is not enough to just check the restaurant web page but also comments of it on independent sites.

Through the restaurant reviews you can find out if the establishment appeared lax on the service , the food cold on arrival , the waiter was pretty terse with a guest , etc.. Okay maybe one bad review you can forget but if there is a few of them you might want to rethink your plans.

As well check the dates of the comments. Are they lumped together and two years old or more recent?

Some restaurant web sites have comments already on them but you know they are all going to be good. I mean do you think they will put a bad comment on their site?

So the next time you want to know more about where you are going to be eating google the restaurant and click on an independent customer review web page that has comments on where you are thinking of dining. Usually the comments are fair and honest. You can decide if one is hogwash or not. If the restaurant has an average rating of 4 to 5 stars it probably is pretty good.

Restaurant owners should be aware of their reviews on line and answer any bad ones as well. Stating whether a problem is fixed will indicate they are on top of things. I bet few restaurant owners actually do this though. However they should.

With the internet available there is no excuse to be surprised. Just be informed.

For you job hunters out there before the interview do a search yourself and check out the reviews. This way you can judge for yourself what shape the establishment might be when you go there and discuss an opportunity.

10 comments:

SkippyMom said...

I left a poor review on yelp.com for a local restaurant - I hated to do it, but I thought it was quite fair considering our experiences.

The owner contacted me and offered to make up our [several] bad experiences and asked for one more chance. Although I declined because it had just been one to many times of bad - I did thank him and upped my rating of the restaurant because he was very proactive in trying to rectify the situation which I thought was very nice of him. [I wasn't looking for anything by writing the review - just wanted to explain what happened to us.]

I always read reviews if it is a new place we haven't been to before.

Steven Nicolle said...

SkippyMom...the great thing is the owner contacted you and tried to make amends. You did the right thing and the owner , which I believe few do , did the right thing by contacting you. He was probably unaware of what happened during your visit. Thank you for your comment on how restaurant reviews can work.

The Jaded Waiter said...

Having worked as a restaurant manager I have strongly mixed feelings about restaurant review sites. Based on over a decade of experience dealing with them I have arrived at the conclusion that they are one of the best and worst things that has ever happened to the restaurant industry. Good tips on your post.. the only thing I would humbly add is to take everything you read on them with a grain of salt.. regardless of whether it's good or bad.

Steven Nicolle said...

The Jaded Waiter....thanks and your advice at the end is good. It is up to the reader to make the final call. Bad reviews could just mean an off moment and not indicative of the restaurant in general.

LordSomber said...

I would not recommend yelp.

http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/04/yelp-fights-fraud-allegations-by-unfiltering-reviews-killing-pay-for-favorite-feature/#

SkippyMom said...

Steve I just want to point out I didn't write that review until after several unsatisfactory experiences. Do not ask me why we still kept going back except that it was close to the movie theater and convenient for a bite to eat/drink beforehand.

I would never give a bad review based on just one time as everyone and every restaurant does have an off day.

Steven Nicolle said...

SkippyMom...and come to think of it a bad comment on a restaurant review I think would come from someone who had multiple bad experiences in a place. Like you I think most would forgive a place on an off day. If not there would be pages of reviews rather than the few you see for each one. Good one.

Steven Nicolle said...

Lord Somber...don't know much about yelp I am afraid. We have different ones up here.

Stephaine said...

i like this article, mot of the time i dont really read reviews and because of that going to a new place is like an adventure to me or to us who ever i am dinning out with...

I had this experience that me and my sister cant decide where to go for dinner "sisters birthday" and since there is an expensive place near our place we decided to try it out thinking that e food might be okey since it's expensive "we heard about it" so we tried that place only to find out that it's the most horrible dinner we will ever have...

one lesson that i learn is not because the place is expensive then it means the place is really good...

Steven Nicolle said...

Stephanie...welcome and well put. Just because the meal is expensive it might not be the best. Sorry to hear of that dinner.