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View Full Version : you restaurant guys. do you read your YELP reviews?



boomchakabowwow
02-20-2013, 01:35 PM
just wondering.

rdm_magic
02-20-2013, 01:44 PM
I read the bad ones

JohnnyChance
02-20-2013, 02:27 PM
I read the bad ones

Yep

pumbaa
02-20-2013, 03:11 PM
I only read them if they mention the pastry/pasta side. I can not change our servers or our night guys so there is nothing i can do about it.

Chuckles
02-20-2013, 05:37 PM
I read them occasionally. But never when sober. For me it is like looking up old girlfriends on Facebook. Always unnerving and never satisfying.

turbochef422
02-20-2013, 06:03 PM
Yea I read them

kalaeb
02-20-2013, 06:21 PM
Yes.

sachem allison
02-20-2013, 06:23 PM
Nope, but my boss does. Usually the only bad reviews are about the servers.

pumbaa
02-20-2013, 06:31 PM
Nope, but my boss does. Usually the only bad reviews are about the servers.

seems like the norm, its always the food was good/great, the restaurant was a bit noisy but the service was lacking....why mention the loud part at my place its a freaking lounge/bar and restaurant you knew going in we have dj's there.

Salty dog
02-20-2013, 07:15 PM
No.

stevenStefano
02-20-2013, 07:16 PM
Deleted

steeley
02-20-2013, 08:24 PM
Yelp is that the site were people know more about your business and how it should be run and what food you should cook because there a FOODIE .
and when they complain you give them free things .
No never read that dripple

eshua
02-20-2013, 08:29 PM
Only for amusement.

JohnnyChance
02-20-2013, 09:12 PM
Only for amusement.

I highly recommend reading the reviews for Schwa in Chicago. The negative ones are usually hilarious.

Crothcipt
02-20-2013, 11:57 PM
I go read the reviews in the downtown area here. usually all the same, service sux, the food was good for what it was, ect. One guy gave my restaurant 1 star because his Idaho potato chips wasn't salted enough. Nothing about all the beer he drank that we make, or about how the server had to carry him to the cab.

franzb69
02-21-2013, 12:03 AM
perhaps there should be a yelp for customers as well =D

pumbaa
02-21-2013, 12:07 AM
my last job used to get so worked up over yelp they even held yelp parties and did specials and amuses for them. and they were always so over the top over this one lady who is some big time yelper here. WHATEVER if you can do it better and know so much why don't you? Ohh thats right because you can talk a good game but can't actually do it. MEH is my grade for yelp, the idea was great but what it has turned into is a big MEH! Also our yelp score is 3 stars thats about average for everyone but our open table rating is 4.5 :scared4:

SpikeC
02-21-2013, 08:55 PM
I write yelp reviews on occation, but usually for places that I really enjoyed. Sometimes I will write one when the experience was really bad, butt that rarely happens, and it is usually a case when the experience was way worse than it had been before.

wellminded1
02-21-2013, 10:03 PM
Try not to, but the boss seems to find them all and likes to print them for us to read. Amazing material to have on your desk after a 14 hour day.

boomchakabowwow
02-22-2013, 12:30 PM
i am actually surprised by the answers..(some of them at least)

i would think it would be a fantastic tool to determine what is being done right, and what needs improvement.

steely: so you dont give it any weight? Foodie = customers..no? if there wasnt a foodie around..everyone would run to taco bell, or hit up the dollar menu at mick-D.

i like Yelp. one report of food poisoning..i probably wont go. :)

kostantinos
02-22-2013, 02:39 PM
it would be a fantastic tool if some of the reviews were geared towards constructive criticism . Usually they are not.
One more thing that happens in todays world is we also tend to magnify the bad and not the good.
Third and most important . There is a serious surplus of "experts" of all shorts. Experts on electronics, in watch making , book reviewers , car enthusiasts, and finally foodies.If you don't understand what i am saying read a review on amazon.
But those guys are really not experts or reviewers. They simply have an opinion and thats that . Thats why when i read a review of anything not just yelp i take it with a grain of salt. Thats probably why i don't turn to yelp at all

shaneg
02-22-2013, 05:10 PM
It seems we have a similar site here in nz, where everyone is an instant food critic, and recommends how our restaurant should be run. Funniest was where they said we should have fresh herbs on the table like they do in Vietnam.... we are a Thai restaurant???

I tend to only read tripadvisor now as people that travel mostly have some common sense, plus they have a username and links to other reviews they have completed, not a made up or anonymous handle.

Plus we are rated 7 out of 900 inner city restaurants on tripadvisor.

rdpx
02-22-2013, 08:27 PM
There was a brilliant documentary in the UK recently where they had both reviewers and reviewed on... there were some lunatics on both sides. It was brilliant TV. "Attack of the Tripadvisors" if you get the chance to see it you really must. Short clip of it here:


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RoDrDknws7Q

marc4pt0
02-22-2013, 08:51 PM
F**k yelp.

At first I thought "oh, what a great idea. This could be a great tool for me." And in the beginning, it was. But, as with all things soap-box, give an unhappy know-it-all the opportunity and they will piss all over it/you. We get great reviews, mostly, but even within those are many uneducated opinions. I don't read them anymore, mainly because I think it very cowardly and childish for these people who take any kind of negative stance on restaurants. You have a problem? Let us fix it. Don't agree with our attempt at fixing it? Talk trash about me to your friends and co-workers. Just like the good ol days.
Used to be word of mouth was what got you in trouble, or made you successful. But that wasn't enough. Now these babies have another avenue to trash your reputation. It could be something as small as they were just in a bad mood. I can't help that, not qualified. But then they "vent", just like the grown ups do in the news paper (read- critics). But their gibberish goes unchecked. Nothing more empowering then bashing good folk when hiding behind a glowing screen, veiled in anonymity.

And others read this crap, and give it credence. Why? Because we love good drama. Just look at the success of real house wives. That's right, I just connected yelp to that tv sh*t drivel.

steeley
02-22-2013, 10:30 PM
i am actually surprised by the answers..(some of them at least)

i would think it would be a fantastic tool to determine what is being done right, and what needs improvement.

steely: so you dont give it any weight? Foodie = customers..no? if there wasnt a foodie around..everyone would run to taco bell, or hit up the dollar menu at mick-D.

i like Yelp. one report of food poisoning..i probably wont go. :)


Foodie has become a missed use term we all eat so were all food eater's
What the the term has turned into is a derogatory reflection of people with a little knowledge and arrogant who feel business owners should bow to there needs because they post on line.

And we don't call them customers we call them guest and like any guest we welcome your comments
I don't go to a business and tell them how to do things and for a chef to change around his menu and cook things just to please a small majority who come in once or twice and post about it.

we have our own visions of food and dishes to prepare through the years of training
and experience .

if you try to be a place which caters to every one's idea's of food
it will became a tourist or T.V chef mecca like Guy Ferry he change his name to fieri to sound more Italian


and a little foodie fun.

http://youtu.be/l2LBICPEK6w

marc4pt0
02-23-2013, 09:01 AM
I remember the good ol days when guests would dine together, enjoying each other's company (and hopefully the food/drinks as well), not actually break out the gawdamn tablet or smart phone and start "critic-ing" on these f'n blogs right there at the table!

cschoedler
02-23-2013, 02:41 PM
I hate yelp. There is a woman in my town ordering take-out from restaurants and threatening the hostesses with a bad yelp review if she doesn't like the food. ***?! Are you kidding me? She told our hostess she "was a sushi snob from the north" and that because of that "the chefs need to give me extra attention". Sure enough she found something to complain about. At least she was gracious enough to give us 2 stars. She gave the Thai restaurant next door 1 star because the price of their take-out was too high and she didn't like the broccoli. Talked to a bartender over there and turns out she is also a "Thai snob from up north".

Amon-Rukh
02-24-2013, 01:39 PM
I'm not in the industry, but yelp is too full of trolls and blowhards for me to get any worthwhile information out of it about places I'm interested in eating at. I can't imagine it would be useful to anyone back of the house.

Beohbe
02-24-2013, 02:22 PM
Thought I would share a yelp story with some of you. There's a great little restaurant in Truckee, CA called Trokay Cafe. Seriously great food, and the owners are absolutely awesome. 4.5 stars on a bs site like yelp, not too bad imo. That said, you can't please everyone. In fact, some people just seem to walk into a place with it set in their mind that they're gonna rip a place a new one. Which is why I love John and Nyna, they actually respond to reviews on yelp that they feel are unfair. Here's a review and subsequent response from John:



I came here with half a dozen friends over the Christmas weekend in December 2011. All but two of us were skiing, and my daily hikes were really helping me work up an appetite. We arrived at 7:00pm ready to chow down on some really good food!

When we walked in, we immediately liked the warm, open-kitchen style atmosphere, and I noticed that there were only two other occupied tables. We sat down and ordered drinks; I had a Sierra Nevada.

Everything from there on was totally downhill. First, several of my friends wanted to order the single pasta dish on the menu. Every time one of them did, our server would get a concerned look on his face, then mutter about needing to check the supply in the kitchen and go off for a few minutes....

Next, one of the two other parties in the restaurant left, and all activity in the room (apart from the conversation at our table) seemed to grind to a total halt. Bread and water eventually arrived, but it seemed like they took forever, and I had to ask our waiter several times where they were.

The horribly slow service continued throughout the rest of our visit. Trokay Caf is the only establishment in Truckee where time seems to be measured not in hours or minutes, but in Furlongs per Fortnight - don't go there expecting to eat on the day you arrive...

Our dinners eventually arrived at close to 9:00pm - 2 hours after we sat down to eat! It had been so long since we ordered, I had forgotten what I had asked for, and totally lost interest in taking any more food pictures. My beef rib was dry and unappealing; I didn't eat all of it. Needless to say, we skipped dessert and went back to our cabin for some good vintage wine and a movie. We also made popcorn - it was the best thing we'd eaten that day!

=====================

After posting this review, I got an insulting, rude note from John Weatherson, the owner. He said: "Your perspectives on time, dining, and general human decency are skewed, and we disregard your review entirely."

It's a pity Mr. Weatherson feels the need to attack honest reviewers of his establishment. I stand by my review (as well as my ability to tell time) and suggest that Mr. Weatherson focus his energies on improving his customer service skills, not to mention the food and level of service at his restaurant.

Listed in: "...it was the worst of times"

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Comment from John W. of Trokay 1/9/2012 Hide

Glenn,

Sorry that you had such an impatient evening. I remember your discontent was palpable to our entire staff that evening, and for absolutely no good reason. Look, I write ticket times for every table so that we can precisely track the timing and pace of each course: you waited less than 5 minutes for bread, but you are correct that you impatiently asked multiple times, even standing up from the table to inquire again.

The 'single pasta dish' is not on our menu. It is for children under 12, which is why your three teenage children ordering off-menu items caused our server initial concern, since we don't stock large quantities of kids menu items, especially not labor-intensive ones like our fresh pasta.

Throughout the evening, your rudeness to our staff was overt. Some people just don't want to be happy, and that evening, you were that person. Your estimate of 2 hours prior to the arrival of your entree is exaggerated by more than double. Your reservation was at 7, and you left the restaurant before 8:45. ***Glenn: I reprinted your receipt just now, it was finalized at 8:34PM on 12/23/2011. Your time estimates are lies*** Your party was four adults and three teenage kids. Everyone, except you, ordered an appetizer of some sort, the result: your entree arrives with the other entrees at the table. Had you ordered an appetizer with the rest of your party, I think you would have found that the pacing of the meal was ideal.

We don't have beer on draft, and we haven't ever carried a Sierra Nevada product. Your perspectives on time, dining, and general human decency are skewed, and we disregard your review entirely.

Regards,
John Weatherson, Owner
Trokay Cafe, Inc. a California corporation

**********************

I intend to be neither insulting, nor rude. Slander in a public forum is wrong, and I sincerely hope that fans of Glenn take note: his facts are firmly disproven by the paper records that indicate that he had already signed his check prior to 8:34PM.

Shortly after confirming via our point of sale system that Glenn's post is an absolute lie, I sent him this message:

Glenn,

I respond to almost all customer comments with understanding and empathy, but I monitored your situation closely, and am confident that your review lacks honesty, and is infused with the unfounded frustration you so clearly showed that night.

Had you chosen to express your discontent to us, perhaps we could help you, but public disparagment and attack is not only insulting, but damaging to our business. Had you chosen to express an honest review, rather than using hyperbole and exaggeration, "Furlongs per Fortnight - don't go there expecting to eat on the day you arrive.." we might have a different perspective. Our customer service is superlative, but we no longer consider you a customer.

If I felt that there was even the slightest justification for you review, I would not have responded the way I did, but your rudeness and insult toward my staff were felt from the onset of your experience, and truly, you reap what you sow.

You'll see from other yelp reviews that your perspective is uncommon.

We work day and night to ensure the best Truckee has to offer. I'll reiterate: Throughout the evening, your rudeness to our staff was overt. Some people just don't want to be happy, and that evening, you were that person.

Good luck to you sir,
John Weatherson

JohnnyChance
02-25-2013, 01:58 AM
That is awesome. If I am ever near Truckee I am going there.

knyfeknerd
02-25-2013, 08:34 AM
Sweet, best rebuttal ever!

cschoedler
02-25-2013, 11:48 AM
Oh man thats awesome, thanks for that!

Beohbe
02-25-2013, 01:47 PM
That is awesome. If I am ever near Truckee I am going there.

Easily worth the drive from anywhere in the Tahoe/Reno area, in my opinion. :)

More yelp stuff, this one more recent (3 stars). They recently relocated to a larger place about a block away from their old one. Apparently they're still working out a few things, but interesting to see this yelper's update to his original post:

************************************************** ***********

They just re-opened, so I stopped by for an appetizer and a dessert for dinner.

The pork belly appetizer is very good: pic (http://www.yelp.com/user_local_photos?select=x2sRvysE7T7y-Dyuxl0Oyw&userid=wG9d5TxOKKgbd8O08-kntA)
Great layering of fat and lean, and nice crispy charred exterior. If the fat were even more crispy charred, and if the whole thing was more rare inside, it would be excellent. I felt it was overcooked by half a minute. ** Update ** John left a note that he's adding a tweak to get this kind of result.

I tried the Baba au Savarin dessert: pic (http://www.yelp.com/user_local_photos?select=9ejcYo8O0kj1mnaBjNfYjw&userid=wG9d5TxOKKgbd8O08-kntA)
It's a science lab that didn't work for me. On one side: there is a stick of brled pineapple, and a pile of toasted coconut mixed with pop rocks. You dip the pineapple in the pop rocks, and munch on that; it starts the pop rocks going. You also get a cute little container of pineapple soda, and you can sip from that to amplify the effect of the pop rocks. It's interesting, but I forgot to bring my lab notebook. On the other side of the plate, you get the baba, which doesn't seem soaked: instead, it has a bit of cream on top, and you can pop the bubble of rum in the middle of the plate, and let the baba soak in that before eating it, but it's not anything like an actual rum baba. On the whole: I'm sure it's possible to create an innovative take on a rum baba that is still crave-worthy, but this is not it.

Even though I only ordered an appetizer and dessert, they brought out a bunch of mini extras: two amuse-bouches (a rolled slice of sashimi, and a beet salad), bread service, biscuit service, cookie service, and dessert service. In total, all the extras were like an extra appetizer. There were three standout items: the focaccia (in the bread service), and the vanilla buttercream macaron and the pte de fruit (in the dessert service): pic (http://www.yelp.com/user_local_photos?select=3sJKnT3a6TsE3sjoEFzCwQ&userid=wG9d5TxOKKgbd8O08-kntA)

The "frozen latte" dessert made with a sub-frigid anti-griddle sounds interesting, but I'd need confirmation that it's indulgent-worthy before I "experiment" with that one.

One plus: In the remodel, they got the acoustics to sound really good.
************************************************** ************

My only point being that, like it or not, sites like yelp can definitely have an impact on your business. I know quite a few people that will check yelp reviews before they go eat somewhere unfamiliar to them, especially considering that it only takes a 30 second search from the phone in their pocket. I'm not sure I could choose to completely disregard this type of feedback from customers, despite their ignorance. To each their own, though.

Zwiefel
02-25-2013, 03:17 PM
Easily worth the drive from anywhere in the Tahoe/Reno area, in my opinion. :)

More yelp stuff, this one more recent (3 stars). They recently relocated to a larger place about a block away from their old one. Apparently they're still working out a few things, but interesting to see this yelper's update to his original post:

************************************************** ***********

They just re-opened, so I stopped by for an appetizer and a dessert for dinner.

The pork belly appetizer is very good: pic (http://www.yelp.com/user_local_photos?select=x2sRvysE7T7y-Dyuxl0Oyw&userid=wG9d5TxOKKgbd8O08-kntA)
Great layering of fat and lean, and nice crispy charred exterior. If the fat were even more crispy charred, and if the whole thing was more rare inside, it would be excellent. I felt it was overcooked by half a minute. ** Update ** John left a note that he's adding a tweak to get this kind of result.

I tried the Baba au Savarin dessert: pic (http://www.yelp.com/user_local_photos?select=9ejcYo8O0kj1mnaBjNfYjw&userid=wG9d5TxOKKgbd8O08-kntA)
It's a science lab that didn't work for me. On one side: there is a stick of brled pineapple, and a pile of toasted coconut mixed with pop rocks. You dip the pineapple in the pop rocks, and munch on that; it starts the pop rocks going. You also get a cute little container of pineapple soda, and you can sip from that to amplify the effect of the pop rocks. It's interesting, but I forgot to bring my lab notebook. On the other side of the plate, you get the baba, which doesn't seem soaked: instead, it has a bit of cream on top, and you can pop the bubble of rum in the middle of the plate, and let the baba soak in that before eating it, but it's not anything like an actual rum baba. On the whole: I'm sure it's possible to create an innovative take on a rum baba that is still crave-worthy, but this is not it.

Even though I only ordered an appetizer and dessert, they brought out a bunch of mini extras: two amuse-bouches (a rolled slice of sashimi, and a beet salad), bread service, biscuit service, cookie service, and dessert service. In total, all the extras were like an extra appetizer. There were three standout items: the focaccia (in the bread service), and the vanilla buttercream macaron and the pte de fruit (in the dessert service): pic (http://www.yelp.com/user_local_photos?select=3sJKnT3a6TsE3sjoEFzCwQ&userid=wG9d5TxOKKgbd8O08-kntA)

The "frozen latte" dessert made with a sub-frigid anti-griddle sounds interesting, but I'd need confirmation that it's indulgent-worthy before I "experiment" with that one.

One plus: In the remodel, they got the acoustics to sound really good.
************************************************** ************

My only point being that, like it or not, sites like yelp can definitely have an impact on your business. I know quite a few people that will check yelp reviews before they go eat somewhere unfamiliar to them, especially considering that it only takes a 30 second search from the phone in their pocket. I'm not sure I could choose to completely disregard this type of feedback from customers, despite their ignorance. To each their own, though.

I definitely use Yelp! when I'm not in my hometown. I'd like to think I know enough about cooking, running a kitchen (perhaps indulgent on this one), writing, and general communication to ferret out people who don't know what they're talking about, or have an axe to grind from people who are going to convey useful information. I try to read at least 20 reviews with a range of ratings before forming an opinion about whether to try a particular place on a particular day. Even with all of that, my "success" rate is probably only around 70%....and that can go in either direction. I also go to the restaurant's website if they have one.

my $.02

SpikeC
02-25-2013, 07:35 PM
I also pay attention to the date that the review was made. If the review blasts a place just because of the service, are those servers still there?

slowtyper
02-26-2013, 01:13 AM
IMO I've had really bad results by following yelp opinions. I do like chowhound but even that is not so simple. I have to find certain users that I really trust and agree with, then I will follow their suggestions and am almost always pleased. Blindly following chowhound will make you go insane...I find many of the people on there pretentious at times, and just outright moronic the rest of the time.

The funniest is reading your own yelp reviews and reading just how many people get things WRONG. Like they state things about the food they were served and prices that aren't even close to what they were served, and they state them with such authority! Funny...

Chef Doom
03-14-2013, 03:20 AM
I go to Yelp for one thing and one thing only. The pictures. The multitude of available photos are worth the search. Enough pictures can make or break my willingness to try a new restaurant.

wenus2
03-14-2013, 04:06 AM
Easily worth the drive from anywhere in the Tahoe/Reno area, in my opinion. :)

Shoot, thats like 25 minutes away. Cant say that I've been, gonna have to check it out!
Thanks for the suggestion.

NO ChoP!
03-14-2013, 11:41 AM
Any idiot with two pennies in their pocket can have impact on the success of an establishment. Way too much power. It's hard enough to please the real food critics.

Dardeau
03-14-2013, 02:07 PM
When the local paper let its reviewer go someone in the online comments to the article committed all the YELPers to stepping up and filling Brett Anderson's shoes. The next comment was "quiet, the grown ups are talking". That pretty much sums up my feelings about yelp.

panda
03-15-2013, 02:59 AM
i read yelp reviews of restaurants i might want to go eat at, but my logic is unorthodox. i avoid the ones people rave about as i find most people have bad taste. and especially ignore the comments about service, atmosphere, price, blah blah blah, only care about the food quality.

reviewers:
if they sound like a foodie, ignore it
if they tell a whole long story, ignore it
if they sound like a yuppy, ignore it
if they sound ignorant, 50/50% chance it's actually pretty good (i don't know why, but dumb people tend to find good food spots somehow)

franzb69
03-15-2013, 03:22 AM
if they sound like a foodie, ignore it
if they tell a whole long story, ignore it
if they sound like a yuppy, ignore it
if they sound ignorant, 50/50% chance it's actually pretty good (i don't know why, but dumb people tend to find good food spots somehow)

great advice!

convis
03-15-2013, 11:40 AM
I dont get it. why would you try and find things wrong with everything when you go out to eat. How the hell can you ever enjoy it?

panda
03-15-2013, 02:01 PM
you misunderstand, filter out the hyped places is my message.