Sunday, February 03, 2008

Why We Don't Go to the Flora Restaurant in Berkeley Oakland

Brother Peter Moore wrote at his blog that he came home from the Flora Restaurant in Berkeley Oakland without eating and I asked why:

Took BART down to try the place. Sit at the bar, have a drink, have a bite.
So it was pretty crowded and the hostess says "Well, I don't have anything and it's an hour and a half wait for a table but the bar is first come, first served." I say, "OK, I'll wait for a seat at the bar."
I'm waiting like ten, fifteen minutes.
A guy, seems like a regular or even an owner/investor comes up to the hostess and says, "That guy who stopped at my table owns half of downtown Oakland. He and his wife really need a table. You should do what you have to to seat them." They had come in after me.
Another ten minutes.
Another couple comes in and is greeted effusively by a waitress who introduces them to the hostess. "These are my really good friends."
Another five minutes.
I see a couple at the bar getting their check. I stand behind them. As they leave the guy tells me to be sure to order the appetizer special. I sit down. The waitress runs over,
"You can't sit here."
"I was told it was open seating at the bar."
She goes to get the hostess.
"I'm really sorry, I should have been clearer. I seat this part of the bar because it faces the kitchen."
At which point the bartender comes up and hands me a menu and says, "What would you like?"
The hostess insists that I can't sit there. A little back and forth but it's clear they're not going to let me sit there.
I stand and leave the restaurant.
I take BART home.
I call the restaurant.
"Hello, I don't mean to be a dick but I'm the guy who you just chased out of the restaurant. And I don't think you handled that very well. I know that you had the guy who owns 'half of downtown Oakland' and his wife and the other waitresses good friends, but I think you could have done that better"
"I'm sorry I didn't make it clear but I do seat that part of the bar."
"You've already insulted me, don't insult my intelligence. The bartender didn't seem to think I couldn't sit there"
Deep breath, "You're right sir. I could have done that better. I'm really sorry. You know the pressure I was under."
"Yes, but you could have handled it better."
"You're right, I could have. I am very sorry sir."
"That's OK. Just wanted to hear you say it.

I will never go to Flora restaurant again. Ever.

1 comment:

Peter Moore said...

Flora is at 19th and Telegraph is the NEW downtown Oakland.