With all the awesome deals available online, a bad apple will once in a while surface.
I recently bought 3 vouchers from Metrodeal. It’s an Eat-All-You-Can promo at Apricot Diner in Caloocan. This is my second time to buy from Metrodeal, I was happy with my first purchase.
There were a lot of confusion regarding the validity of the buffet. In Metrodeal’s website, it was stated that voucher validity starts on August 1. Voucher is valid on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
Apricot Diner’s response to inquiries on their facebook page
No buffet on Sundays, Apricot was very firm about that.
“The validity starts on 1st August, but the buffet will start on 19th August.” What? At the expense of people who already bought and only have the week before the 19th to use their vouchers?
What request from your customers? Have you not read the “fine print” that you yourself made?
This is a question for Metrodeal. Is Apricot Diner, and all your other clients, allowed to omit or change whatever is included in a “deal” right after the deal goes live online? If yes, then it’s very unfair for us -the buyers.
Making a table reservation, that’s supposed to take less than 10 minutes, took 3 days of email and FB exchanges. They do have one landline phone but not a single one of my calls were answered. I was able to secure a table for an August 6 buffet lunch via email.
With my unwilling lunch companions, understandable since Caloocan is very far from Mandaluyong, we braved the heavy Saturday traffic yesterday after my son’s soccer practice. I called the restaurant first, someone answered this time, to ask for directions and to confirm that we were on our way.
The place. I’m not a frequent visitor of that side of Manila so I was shocked that a restaurant offering "International" buffet, which supposedly has a regular price of Php600, just a few pesos shy of Saisaki, can only accommodate a car, and maybe half of another car, parked on the sidewalk parallel to the street. There was already a car parked in front of the restaurant, maybe the owner’s car?, so we had to park our car on the next street. Metrodeal should have included this important information on the restaurant’s deal page.
The service. I approached a waiter and told him that I have a table reservation for 3. I gave him the vouchers, he checked the list and then he went inside the kitchen without guiding me to our table. I had to call his attention again and he said, "Maki-share na lang po kayo sa kanila" (Please just share with them), pointing to a table for four with three vacant seats. I made a reservation, they confirmed that we’ll have a table, so I was expecting that we have our own table. "Late na po kasi kayong dumating" (You were late in coming in.) Was I at fault to expect that they’ll hold a table for us until we arrive? I did call and confirm that we’re on our way. I also gave them my mobile number when I made the reservation.
Buffet Menu List posted on their facebook page. Manloloko much?
The food. Cold pasta, cold ribs, everything on the buffet table were already cold. Yes, everything including the soup. I still had to point it out to the waiter. The waited had to reheat everything in the kitchen because the food warmers were apparently broken at that time. Yes, all the food warmers.
My son already got some pasta, kids at 10 can eat pasta even if it’s straight from the ref, while I was talking to the waiter. I told him to stop eating first and just wait for the reheated food.
I went back to the buffet table when I saw that everything were already reheated. But there were no plates so I had to ask the waitress for a plate. Look what she gave me, a dusty plate.
At this point I was beyond pis–err–angry. I usually lose my patience when I’m sleepy and/or hungry. To say that I was already VERY hungry at that time, at 130PM?, was an understatement. I just want to get out of the place so I asked for a refund. I wasn’t expecting to get a full refund since my son ate some pasta and drank some of the iced tea.
I was pleased that the Chef/Owner gave a full refund. But I wasn’t that thankful anymore when I saw his tweets. I searched for Apricot Diner’s twitter page and there were two results that came out, the twitter page of Apricot Diner and that of Mr. Chris Go. He was the person who confirmed my email reservation.
"Think before you click" is GMA News’ campaign for the responsible use of social media. Most probably he wasn’t thinking when he tweeted those things. I guess for him I look like a person who doesn’t know how to tweet, or Google, so he feels safe to tweet that there were demanding customers that day.
Was I demanding? Maybe he likes cold-as-ice soup, pasta and ribs. But most people don’t, so I don’t think I’m a demanding customer.
Put rat poison on the food?! Que Horror, I will never step on Apricot Diner again!