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Bad experience at Summer Shack

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I have always been a fan of Summer Shack. I went there tonight with my girlfriend and was really looking forward to it. I ordered the fried chicken and she had a blackened red fish. Her fish was really good, except for the big bone that they failed to remove. My fries were excellent but the chicken was only lukewarm. I didn't feel like complaining about it and it tasted ok.

We were about half way through our dinner when the busboy spilled a full coffee cup from the table next to us. My girlfriend got a big coffee stain on her white skirt. I pointed it out to the person as he was cleaning up and he said "Sorry" and walked away. She didn't want to pursue it so we didn't mention it to anyone else.

As we were waiting for our check there was another big spill, this time directly behind me. I look under my table and there was a big pile of green beans, rice and fish fillet. The spill was really loud and people on neighboring tables started talking about both spills and saying that we should not have to pay for our meal. In that moment the manager walks back with our check. He looks at me and says "Did you get hit too?" I said no but there is a big coffee stain on my girlfriend's skirt from an earlier spill. The manager pulls out his business card and says "I guess I can give you my business card if you want to have it dry cleaned." We just look at him, not knowing what to say. Then he says, "What do you want me to say? I guess I'm sorry" He then left with the bill on the table.

Needless to say we did not take his business card and we left rather unhappy. We certainly won't be going back there anytime soon. I do find it incredible that the manager chooses to do nothing even after witnessing the spill.

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  1. Why didn't you take his card? I would have sent the dry-cleaning bill directly to him. This is probably veering into the realm of Not about Food but I think his snotty attitude aside, they should have paid for the damage done. He should have comped you the meal but you don't always get that kind of customer service, unfortunately.

    1. Why didn't you take his business card?? That was his offer, albeit an indifferent one. I would write a note to Jasper White, and tell him about the situation. I'm sure you'll get a response. The more folks don't want to make a fuss, the more this kind of behavior will go unchecked.

      You paid good $$ for your meal. Why reward bad service and an indifferent attitude?

      1. Was also there Saturday night (Alewife location) and were very underwhelmed. I too have always been a supporter--even in the face of bad reports on this board--but may have hit my limit.
        I ordered a scallop special as my main, which not only came with different sides than advertised on the blackboard, but was also sitting in a about 3/4 cup of flavorless liquid--obviously not how the dish was conceived. Our waitress, who had been attentive and great to this point, disappeared for that portion of our meal. The scallops themselves were tasty, but I wanted to mention the "wrong" sides and liquid problem to someone, and never got the chance (plates were cleared by a lightning-quick bus boy). Most of our food was good--not great--and expensive. Not sure we'll be back anythime soon.

        Another note: we went early with our almost 2-year old, and noticed that those dining without children were in the minority.

        1. Went to Alewife location right after it opened (quite a while ago). We've never returned. The food was very expensive for what it is, the service was substandard and the seating was uncomfortable. I was SO disappointed because I was a great fan of Jaspers in Boston. (So sad when it closed).

          1. I ate at the Summer Shack at Mohegan Sun...was sooo looking forward to it...was sooo disappointed..the food was mediochre to bland , the service was nothing special...will not go back

            1. I guess I'm wondering why you didn't take his business card, too: that way, at least you wouldn't end up paying for dry cleaning on top of what you already paid for so-so food, crappy service, and an all-around lousy dining experience, and you would have been able to enclose in a letter of complaint to the owner to corroborate your story.

              1. At a minimum you should have taken the card and had them pay for the dry cleaning. Never let emotions get in the way of good judgement.

                With respect to getting comped, you should have casually walked over to him and out of earshot, mentioned all the troubles and ask him point blank to do something about the bill as well.

                You failed to mention the waiter so it appears he did nothing to assist in the discussion. I know I will probably be in the maniority but I would have nicked the tip significantly. Your his/her customer and they should have been there to assist

                4 Replies
                1. re: jfood

                  I like your suggestion to ask point blank about the comp. Seems in this case they OP was waiting for the manager to do the right thing, why not just ask the manager to do it instead? Worst they can say is no, and you're no worse off.

                  1. re: yumyum

                    how exactly would you phrase a request for bill comp? Would saying something like "...and I think you should ??? the bill" put the manager on the offensive?
                    How would you convery displeasure w/o sounding too nasty or demanding?

                    1. re: olia

                      First you must be calm and present the facts and ask for closure. So here's a shot at some verbiage.

                      "Excuse me. I want to thank you for stepping into our situation and your offer to reimburse my girlfriend for the dry cleaning of her skirt. You should also know that the kitchen had some miscues and the waiter was not on top of his game and overall the quiet evening we were hoping for turned into a disaster. I do not think it's fair (always a good word) for me to be charged for such a miserable evening. I think you should consider taking care of a portion of the charges as a gesture of good will."

                      1. re: jfood

                        thank you! i realize my question might have been a little silly, but sometimes i find myself reluctant to approach managers with any issues for the fear of sounding too upset/controlling/unreasonable. Your example sounds really good (although I hope I won't need to use it often)