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Oct 2, 2007 07:46 PM

terrible experience at Pio Pio to go

I was so looking forward to my first chicken at Pio Pio To Go after having moved to Jackson Heights. I went to the one on the corner of 85th and Northern tonight. I ordered a whole chicken and an avocado salad to go from the cashier. I paid $15.25. The same woman who rung me up went into the kitchen and she packed my order and gave it to me.

When I got home, I discovered there were absolutely no avocados in the salad. $6 for a heap of iceburg lettuce and a sliced tomato is kind of expensive, so I put it back in the container and planned to go back out to return it. Then I opened the chicken, which I found to be a very small amount for $8, plus too greasy for my taste.

I ate half of it and then went back to return the salad. When I got there, there was a different woman at the counter. I told her that I had ordered and paid for an avocado salad only to find a lettuce salad when I got home. Instead of apologizing and offering me my money back, she said "oh, she didn't tell you?" (meaning the other woman). "We don't have any avocados tonight." The other woman came out, acted pissed off that she had to deal with me, asked me if it had been delivery (I'm not sure why that mattered but I said no, I came here an hour ago) and then kind of pushed the $6 at me after I told her all I wanted was my money back (of course she didn't give me back the tax I had paid on top of the $6) and was generally unpleasant.

I will never go back there again.

I may, however, give the regular Pio Pio a chance, but I will NOT get takeout. At least when you're in the restaurant you can see the mistakes and ask for them to be corrected right away. Once you're at home with takeout food, it's kind of hard to work up the motivation to return it if the order is wrong.

I understand that mistakes can be made- but all I ask is that the restaurant have a 'customer is right' attitude (especially since I WAS right) and treat me graciously.

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  1. Sorry you had a bad experience.

    I get a half chicken & avocado slices from Pio Pio to go fairly frequently, I've generally been happy. I had the salad once and that was enough, don't care for iceberg, cucumbers, unripe tomato, big chunk of carrot nor their house dressing.

    The one time I ordered delivery, after the guy left, I discovered there was no green sauce. I was pissed! What's the point of getting a Pio Pio chicken without the green sauce???

    If you didn't like the take out chicken, I don't expect you would like the chicken in the restaurant any better.

    1. I've had an unpleasant experience with Pio Pio to Go as well. Cashier was pretty rude and overall there is a couldn't-care-less attitude from the staff. The chicken I ordered wasn't fresh and seemed pre-packaged. Rice was soggy and clumpy. Bad. I will never get takeout from there again.

      1. I ordered take out a month ago. On the way home the very, very thin plastic bag broke and everything landed on the sidewalk. Fortunately, food was well packaged and I did have another large plastic bag from another store. Food was good. I won't order the Avacado salad again. When I don't feel like walking to Pio Pio for chicken, I get it at Empire Chinese at 37-09 83rd St. They place roasted chickens in a huge covered Rice container. The chicken literally falls off the bone. Incredibly moist and tasty. A whole chicken is $5.85, 1/2 is $3.00. The reason I go to Pio Pio is for the side dishes. The woman at Empire is always so very pleasant unlike the one's at Pio Pio. Empire has a special (D1) which is 1/2 roasted chicken with steamed mixed vegetables and rice for a mere $4.75. This is a huge meal and so very good.

        1. Pio Pio on Woodhaven Blvd is very friendly. I never had trouble with that branch of Pio Pio.

          1. I an so saddened by my recent experiences at Pio Pio because it was one of my favorite dining experiences in Jackson Heights. I've always gone there for the fried calamari as a great to-go dish but more and more they seemed to have changed the definition of what constitutes calamari or they've changed suppliers or they've gone from using fresh to frozen; I'm just not sure what went wrong. I DO know that the taste of the "calamari" is very different than what it used to be. It now looks like it could be an onion ring or an old thick rubber band and tastes horrendous. I still love the ceviche (roasted chicken I go to the yellow place at 81st and Roosevelt--wow...) but it seems that for calamari it's still best to go to Cyclades in Astoria. The owner there is adamant about having fresh ingredients....

            1 Reply
            1. re: FillmoreHall

              I haven't had their calamari in a long while, but I did used to like it quite a bit, and yes it was always tender. But the ceviche? I always heard it was a must to avoid, and that many many people had gotten ill from it...