While the Eater Complaints Dept. staff usually fields one to two notable queries per month, three serious complaints flooded in over the wire since our last complaint post Friday morning. We've compiled them all for you in a special Eater Complaints Dept Bitchy Monday Edition:
1) First, a complaint for an absurdly dirty kitchen on East 6th Street's Little India:
"Sonar Gaow, an Indian restaurant on 6th Street in between 1st and 2nd Avenue, is the FILTHIEST restaurant in all of New York City. Looking for a bathroom, I peaked into the kitchen area and almost barfed. There was a CAT walking around the kitchen area and I didn't want to know if it had a litter box in the restaurant. Maybe the reason that the food is so cheap is that they use foreign ingredients?! I know this is probably illegal, but I don't know what the steps are to take in order to contact to Health Department. Needless to say, my friend and I just walked out."
2) More of a sad report than a complaint, we hear about the ghost town and some inconsistent hours at Centovini:
"...at the following restaurant things seem to have been so odd and out of wack for so long that I think it is more than the summer lull...Besides the fact that one can walk by it a million times and never know it is there, strange things have been happening with the hours. As I recall when they first opened they served breakfast, then that stopped, but they still served brunch, then that stopped, but they were open for lunch, now that has stopped, then they were open on Sundays, then that stopped, but then it strangely started again before Labor Day. Besides this major lack of consistency in terms of hours, which can never be a good sign, I think the entire dining room staff has changed over the summer....I believe Mr. Moss to be an intelligent man and thus don't imagine that he will watch this restaurant suffer much longer and cease to support it."
3) The third, and our personal fave, involves a new ordering requirement at the Bowery Hotel's Gemma:
Location: Gemma, Friday, 7:30PMOurs too.
Scene: Many empty outside tables
Who: 5 women (desperately in need of cocktails), one host (Mr. PotatoHead in a bowtie and suit), one hostess (pretty, but insipidly mindless)
Women: Hi - we would like a table, there are 5 of us, outside if possible (noticing that majority of tables were empty)
Mindless hostess: Ok, will you be eating?
Women: Yes, we will be ordering appetizers.
Mindless Hostess to PotatoHead: They are going to have cocktails and appetizers. What should I do?
PotatoHead: No, they can't sit outside. They have to have a meal.
Women: That's no problem. (after a few bottles of wine food will be needed).
PotatoHead (refusing to address us directly): And it can't be appetizers. That's not a meal. They have to order entrees. (Women now beginning to wonder what might be wrong with the food given this hard push for entrees. Not getting the revenue you need lately, huh?)
Women: That's fine. We'll order some appetizers and entrees.
Mindless Hostess to PotatoHead: Are they allowed to do that? Does that count?
PotatoHead: NO. I said they had to ORDER A MEAL.
Women: Please define "a meal" (as we highly doubt most of your clientele does anything but pick at lettuce)
Mindless Hostess (quite proud of herself): A "meal" consists of an appetizer and entree for each person at the table.
PotatoHead: (nods in agreement).
Women: (OH, thanks for educating us) Thanks, we'll just sit at the bar.
Is this a new policy from Gemma? That we have to order "meals"? And will their staff actually be able to define and enforce this? What if I want to order three appetizers instead of one entree? Does that count? What if I want two appetizers and dessert? And where does dessert fit in, anyway? Can I have an entree and dessert instead of an appetizer and an entree? It just hurt my head.
Do you have a grievance? Operators are standing by.
· FW: Reusing the Olives at El Rio Grande [~E~]