March 10, 2016
I hate to be the bearer of bad news so let me begin by saying that I feel very pleased and welcomed when I visit during the earlier lunch shift. Unfortunately for me though, it is very difficult to get to this location so that I can be waited on by the bar waitress Jackie (the receipt seems to always misspell her name as JACQUELY.
Maybe this is really a truncated version of Jacqueline with the Y being the first initial of her last name). As a customer, I feel that Jackie has proven herself time and time again. Jackie is attentive, friendly, readily able to make suggestions based on items she feels are really good or possible alternatives when an item I'm not sure about allows for substitutions for something I'm not fond of or for health reasons can not eat. She is a rare gem who makes me feel appreciated for making the choice to spend my money with T.G.I.Fridays and therefore is truly forefront in my mind for trying to choose when to visit if I really want to have a good meal experience.
Again, more times than not, I'm sadly unable to get there early in the day. However, on the other hand I seem to have repeat bad experiences during my evening visits. What's most shocking to me is that although it tends to be busier in the evening there seems also far more staff available to wait on customers. So, why the discrepancies?
I keep wondering the same things: Why does this location continue to thrive so well? What is making the customers continue to flock her time and time again? Really, I'm truly amazed at how often I've stopped by and have found this location near to capacity or with customers in line waiting for a table to become available - that is based upon the many unpleasant experiences I've had that ironically keep getting worse as I try after long hiatuses to give repeated second tries. I sincerely don't understand it.
My most recent visit was on March 07, 2016 when I first arrived some time before 2:00 pm & needing to use the restroom first & reconnect with the T.G.I.Fridays Customer Service (CS) telephone service that I had contacted in route to obtain two serial numbers for rewards I had waiting to be used but from which I was disconnected after about 11 minutes due to my low battery. Disappointed yet again with the length of time it takes to resolve the simplest concerns or questions I've had to call T.G.I.Fridays' CS regarding, this 2nd call lasted 57 minutes & 31 seconds from start to finish. I spoke with two people, one being a supervisor I had to practically beg to be transferred to in order to finish helping me. In the end I FINALLY got what I asked for but not before being totally frustrated and embarrassed to be sitting in a restaurant trying to get.
So, my dining experience didn't begin until approximately 3:15 pm. Jackie was my primary hostess along with few other kind staff who collectively took turns bringing my selections to the table - I decided to try the endless appetizers since I missed this promotion the last time it was offered. There are several on the menu that I've never tried and this seemed the best opportunity to do so without feeling as though I would totally loose out if I didn't like them. To my surprise I found that I really like the Pan Seared Pot stickers which are very light and delightful both with the provided soy sauce or in combination with the Miso sauce (closest to teriyaki sauce I requested).
I later found that I really like them best as is, naked with no sauce. As well, I've become a fan of the Green Bean fries - who would have thought something so simple would have such an amazing flavor - excellent way to get in a serving of veggies that are good for you - I even took the batter off when I ordered the second round of these very hot (just like I prefer my food) commodities. Due to the fact that I was told they are required to only bring one appetizer out at a time and I desired to try each of the available eight by the time Jackie was leaving at 5:00 pm I had only asked for five from the list with two items needing to be returned instantly (the one on the Flatbread and the BBQ Beef Tostados). For the one on the Flatbread, I didn't like that the crust on this appetizer which reminds you of pizza (which I've always been quite fond of) didn't seem cooked enough for my taste giving it a bit of a mushier than expected texture.
For the BBQ Beef Tostados there was so little meat to this dish that I really couldn't understand why they bothered to put Beef in this appetizer's name. It really consist most of cabbage or maybe a simple slaw atop a tostado chip with an assortment of sauces drizzled on top to give a mixed flavoring. Personally I have to admit that I really did not care for this one too much. I had to send the first plate back because I didn't know that there was a chipotle sauce on it (which was soooo hot that it had my entire mouth burning after only a minute *** - spicy foods now give me headaches and have been known to make my eyes hurt for days).
Then when the second round came the dish unlike the first plate was EXTREMELY cold making it a bit shocking and uncomfortable to eat. Not wanting to cause them more trouble so soon, I finished it because it was the next item ordered after I had just returned the Flatbread. I reasoned that due to the amount of cabbage on each chip that this too was a good way to get in more veggies. Once Jackie and her crew left around 5:00 pm everything went completely down hill.
Jackie told me that she'd let the male bar attendant, LaMar who was replacing her to take care of me. Getting a tiny stomach ache from all the mixtures of sauces from the appetizers I'd already tried she told him to give me a little time (I had a book that I was also trying to read) and to then check on me for my next selection. Well, let's begin by saying that LaMar NEVER checked on me - NOT EVEN ONCE. In fact, I can't say that I'd ever seen him leave from behind the bar all night - although this may not be fair given that I kept dozing off while waiting for someone - ANYONE to pay attention to me at all let alone while waiting for the remaining food selections to come to the table.
I had to practically BEG for the One and ONLY selection that I received between 5:00 pm & 8:00 pm. When the Loaded Potato Skins finally came to me they looked and felt as though someone had tried reheating them repeatedly (at least 3-4 times) with times where they were left sitting and drying out. They were unappealing, crusty hard, and literally cracking when I tried bending them. They also appeared as though the cook suddenly got a new fangled idea to deep fry them instead of baking them due to the difference from their normal texture.
Needless to say this four only to a plate serving had to be returned too. Sadly, though when the waiter returned he brought ones that looked very much like the first batch just a slight degree softer and immediately after he walked away another waiter brought me two plates of them that I didn't order and had sent back. For some odd reason Lou, the manager decided to bring the two I had just sent away back to the table - I did not eat them. I just stacked them inside the funnel that was still on my table from when I ordered the Spinach Dip earlier and had the bus boy remove them when he was cleaning.
Following this three hour wait to be asked for my next selection I think I waited close to another two hours before I was finally being treated like a paying customer. This I think only occurred because the young lady heard my complaints about how different the service was from when Jackie was there. I never bothered trying what has been one of my truly favorite appetizers, the Mozzarella Cheese sticks because I was so tired and made to feel as though I was a bother at the end of the night. My bill for 6 appetizers with only two requested twice (9 total) came to me at 11:08 pm and ironically was soooo exaggerated that I couldn't see why they would trump up the itemized listing of appetizers I had when during a regular meal if items are sent back they are automatically taken off the bill.
I was told it was because I had the endless apps and it really doesn't matter since the price is the same. I wonder if the Corporate offices would agree especially when the bill they brought me totaled $125.60 with a discount of $113.60 for a paid price of $13.20 when in fact there were SEVEN items that SHOULD NOT have been on the bill at all either due to returned items or having never ordered them bringing the true bill down by $58.30 plus tax. The next biggest kicker was finding out that I was not given a survey code on my receipt in order to qualify for the $8 Free Appetizer that you get when submitting your survey!!!
I was told that they only do this randomly now - what B___Sh__!!!! What do you all think of all of this?
Reason of review: Poor customer service.
Monetary Loss: $15.
Preferred solution: Let the company propose a solution.
I liked: Lunch staff service.
I didn't like: Extremely bad dining service, Lengthy calls with incompetent phone customer service staff, Incompetent guest service staff.