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FW: Cold Scallops at AJ Maxwell's

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From: [an eater]
Date: Friday, January 23, 2009
To: eater complaints dept.
Subject: Cold Scallops at AJ Maxwell's


First of all, once they found out we were here for restaurant week, I could see the attitude change immediately. Sure, they weren't going to be making $$$ off us, but the whole point of RW is to discover new places! After a very paltry, meager salad as my appetizer, I received scallops as my entree (3 of them). Took a bite and found out they were cold in the middle...

I cut open each scallop, and yup:

Waiter was called over and took my dish away. Well guess what?

My SAME plate was brought back, the remaining cut-up scallops and all, simply charred and cooked through. I even saw my bite marks! I could not believe this.

Now wait a second. If my dish is cooked wrong, wouldn't they serve me a totally new dish with whole scallops (instead of the ones i cut up and partially ate?) I expect that from a cheapie storefront or dive, but this is supposedly one of the "top steakhouses in America" as they have promoted themselves on their marketing materials.

Shocked that they would do this, spoke to the waiter about my disappointment and they whisked my dish away without further prompting, not knowing what they were going to do with it.

I asked to speak to the manager, Toni Ann, and she took her sweet time in coming over, only appearing when the scallops arrived, this time a PROPER new dish. At this point, my boyfriend already finished his meal and our mood was grim. The experience was pretty much dismal.

She wasn't polite. She didn't want to listen to my side story, instead interrupting me with "yeah i heard, i heard, well "try the scallops now, try them!" I told her that I didn't feel like eating anymore. But after I hesitatingly tried one, she goes, "see, don't let small things like that bother you, especially with what's going on in the world today." I expressed my disappointment but she said, "It was a mistake, but i can't do anything about it" and acted very defensive, talking down to us, not listening to us or offering any kind of solution.

Because of this poor reaction, I kindly said, "I would appreciate if you could take these off the bill or do something about it," whereupon Toni Ann simply said, "i'll have to check with the owners." yeah RIGHT.

Well finally the bill came and no sign of any deduction. We called her over again and she said because it's restaurant week prix fixe, we CAN'T take off the scallops b/c they weren't a la carte. what??? how ridiculous! When we asked her, did you speak to the owners? who made that decision? she said, "I DID! I don't need to be second guessed!" and started yelling at us, shoving it in our face that this is restaurant week prix fixe and she can't do anything about it. She said that we ate the scallops, therefore we should pay for it, and there were other things to worry about more serious than this.

Needless to say, we are never coming back.

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