Call ahead seating has yet to work out well for me. The idea is good – let people call from home (or the car) to get their name on the list, so they don’t have to wait as long when they get to the restaurant. Seems simple enough.
So, a couple weeks ago before we went to Chili’s, I called ahead and told them there would be six of us (four adults, toddler, infant) and gave them my name. We arrived 20 minutes later and they had no record of it. None. They apologized and said we’d be “next on the list”. That apparently isn’t what it sounds like, because all kinds of people were seated before we were. I checked with the hostess again, and there were “just a few more people” ahead of us. Huh? Weren’t we next?
Then last week I tried with Longhorn. My experience with Longhorn in the past has been nothing short of excellent, but they had a few issues. First was the call ahead seating. Like with Chili’s, there was no record of my call. How? They eventually found my name on another list, but they had no idea how it got there. We had to wait a bit longer than we should have, but it’s still kind of silly.
This Longhorn also has some parking issues. There are 3 or 4 spaces in front of the restaurant, and the rest are valet-only, presumably so they can squeeze more cars into the back lot. Of course, with two kids valet is a pain in the rear. But, whatever, we don’t have a choice.
We get done eating and go to get our minivan. We give the guy the ticket and wait – and wait – and wait. Eventually he drives around with a minivan similar to ours, and by “similar” I mean it was also a minivan. He seemed confused when we told him it wasn’t ours, but asked if he could bring around a Jag next time. They got it right on the next try and brought the correct vehicle. I asked what happened and was told “they both had the same number on the ticket”. What? How does this happen? You would think that all of the tickets had unique numbers to avoid this exact situation. I guess not…