Sunday afternoon I came upon a difficult dilemma: what to do as a diner when you receive poor service. Out at brunch at Vinoteca, the restaurant a few weeks ago I sung the praises of, my companion and I had ordered our food. Talking pleasantly, about 30 minutes later we noticed that the food had not yet come.

I decided to be casual about it, we weren’t in a rush, though the place was rather unbusy and we hadn’t really seen our waiter since our drinks came. However, soon enough he seemed to have noticed the situation and a few minutes later came by to apologize for the wait and promised the food would be out right away.

20 minutes after that, still no food. I was getting very hungry, I hadn’t had anything to eat all day and it was now 2 pm. I was ready to be patient though, and once we got our food not give a very good tip, perhaps explain the problem to the manager. However, what really pushed me over the edge was watching a couple that had arrived perhaps 10 minutes before receiving their food when my companion and I had been waiting nearly an hour.

So that was it, I flagged down a waitress and asked for the check, explaining that we’d been waiting nearly an hour for our food and wanted to leave. She did the right thing by alerting the manager, and he came over and apologized for the wait, explained that there had been an issue with the system they used to get the orders to the kitchen, promised the food would be on them if we wanted to wait for it come out, which he said would be very soon.

The food got to us not 5 minutes after, and it was very good. The restuarant did the right thing for comping the entire meal, though I do wish they had noticed the problem earlier and righted it earlier. It would have been fine if they had brought us something to snack on while we were waiting, and not comped the entire meal because of it.

The problem was, because they were so unbusy no one really noticed that our food hadn’t come out, and me trying to be patient and understanding, didn’t say anything. And, half hour wasn’t a terribly long time to wait, it was the half hour after that when they said the food would come out right away that really bothered a very-hungry me. I am glad though that the restaurant fixed the situation, and that I’m not writing this post irate that I waited for my food for an hour and then just gave up and left.