Friday, November 6, 2009

Frites and the Corona Incident

This no-blogging policy at my new job is starting to bug me. When I'm spending half my time in the office, there's really not much else to think about but work. Not that I have anything substantial to say just yet (it's only been two weeks), but just knowing that I can't channel whatever I'd want to say through my blog feels like, well, constipation.

Went to Frites for the second time last night and had a slightly less enjoyable meal than from my first experience there. The house mussels are still nice but this time there were at least four dead ones in our pot that didn't open. Since their mussels are priced by weight (either one or a half kilo per order) and I figured we only ate half a kilo minus four mussels, and I was sure if it had been scallops or a crab or any other seafood they would've made sure only fresh ones were served, I asked our server if he could ask the kitchen to replace those four. The problem is, none of the servers at Frites really speaks good English. We were really looking forward to finishing the meal and going home when the manager came over with a fresh new pot of house mussels, all half a kilo of them with the side fries and rye bread. The kitchen must've thought I was either the biggest bitch or the biggest cheapskate to send back four dead mussels and request a whole new pot. The manager's explanation was that the kitchen can't cook just four mussels; they have to make the whole pot... I may be the biggest bitch but that just wasn't something I could've accepted without feeling incredibly guilty. So we kindly declined their nice gesture as well as their offer for free dessert, and ended up leaving a big tip.

So why couldn't they cook just four mussels? Practically every table in the restaurant had an order of mussels. The kitchen could've easily dumped four extra ones in the next order they prepared and scooped them out for us.

This reminded me of the Corona incident, which happened about two weeks ago over happy hour with a bunch of bananas: Brit’s and Aussi’s drinks arrived shortly after I sat down ― two Coronas. Brit looked at the bill and quickly realized they’d been overcharged. The waiter, at first not realizing that Corona was listed for $55 on the menu, went to check why the total for two had come to $124. He came back looking all proud with a revised bill in his hands, and explained that their computer was showing the wrong price for Corona and to correct this they had put a 10% discount on the bill. “Uh, but this is clearly still more than what we should be paying,” Brit had to explain.

I was too busy getting happy to follow-up with how they ended up resolving the bill. But by the time Yank showed up and wanted to order a Corona, the waiter “reminded” him that there were other beers available and went on to recite a list of alternatives. “He wants a Corona,” C said. There was a pause just long enough for all of us to exchange confused looks with everyone else at the table. Then the waiter finally said something about their computer having the wrong price for Corona. And that’s apparently enough reason to forbid customers from ordering it.

1 comment:

Zombiehellmonkey said...


Everyone likes free stuff, and I can tell that Frites have good management.

You should have taken the fresh dish as payment for this rave review!

Thanks for posting the scam.