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Oct 17, 2007 07:49 PM

Les Zygomates- sad sad night

met up with some friends and we decided to grab dinner at les zyg.
we sat bistro side so we could chat and catch up. our waiter came over and had the manner of a train conductor- in the annoying loud way when they talk AT you and quickly leave

when he came back to order one DC asked to talk to the somm Geoffrey. we have always liked his manner and wine selections. the waiter looked liked we had boiled his slippers. and then, it seemed, he was done with us for the evening.

more bread was asked for twice, no more replacement bread until the dinner courses were served. this wouldnt have been bad if there wasnt the twenty minute gap between clearing salads and entree arrival. and we ask three people. the salads were passable. we all had the beet with goat cheese. one DC got the prix fixe and as a result got the crumbles of goat instead of a slice like we had-it might be bistro style but it was pretty glaring when we looked at them all together.

I had an empty glass of water and i was eating ice chips (very thirsty after vinegary salad) and wound up drinking my DC's and then eating their ice chips, everytime i tried to flag down a pitcher i became invisible.

entrees: mine was rabbit; over salted but the texture of the rabbit was fine. the rice was um how can i even minute rice. seriously the grains were splitting all over the place and it had clearly been left to soak...for a long time. i cant believe i paid 27 dollars for this-all while eating ice chips-oh i did finally get up and go to the bar where 4 waitstaff were chatting and asked our waiter for water. this was just embarrasing-i didnt want to but he filled the next table without even glancing over or asking how everything was. however all the waitstaff did have quite a conference going on at the bar, the waiter seemed more upset that he had to actually wait on our table for the rest of the night- yay service!

DC had prix fixe hanger-very tough and not pleasurable to eat-ug strike two

other DC had lamb shank - passable but honestly a little too salted -is the entire kitchen staff smoking menthols without filters!!????? what happened to their palettes?

our entrees were cleared and waiter gave a ramekin of chocolate discs-the kind used for melting choc-it was a nice gesture but ug he actually was giving us the eye after this
another waitress came over and took our wine bottle and tried to clear our glasses-we had to ask her to stop-there was still a full glass of wine left - GO TEAM! she then seemed to glare from the conference at the bar. hmmm when you expect friendlyness-you may get the opposite...ok

dessert- had cassis sorbet - to much lemon. creme brulee- i liked it one DC thought it not rich enough. i like it for its not to cloying taste. i must admit it was very milky and not creamy or rich. but at this point we were asking ourselves "could this have come from a mix?"

the atmosphere is still nice but i would only go back to talk to geoffrey and order some nice wines off his list.

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  1. When things are this bad, did you think of talking with the manager? I wouldn't have had the patience to sit and take such poor service.

    1 Reply
    1. re: three of us

      we sat on the side with no music. I was told this was the bistro side but that could be up to interpretation. the DC that frequents talked to the mgr when we left. I am fine to go back and enjoy some wine. I was just really really saddened to feel such a drop in food and service. last time i was there was in January and it was ok but nothing like a few years ago. i feel like they are struggling and not even trying to strive for what they could be. I still have hope for the place but a strong hand from the FOH would be welcomed.

    2. I am really shocked, and I agree with threeofus that a talk with the manager would have been called for in this instance, and early on in the going. Either Geoffrey or Silvi would have remedied the matter quickly, I expect.

      I frequent Les Zyg regularly (once/month), with a disclaimer that the BF's jazz quartet is a monthly feature there. I usually have great experiences there. The food is usually consistent and solid, high quality neighborhood French bistro fare. I'm a big fan of the goat cheese/beet salad and have had it both as an a la carte item and from the prixe fixe menu. Yes, they are presented differently, but I don't expect the prixe fixe items to be exactly the same, since I'm getting "the deal". Just curious, were you on the side with the music (I don't know which side you consider the "bistro side")...that is always where I sit, but service should be the same regardless of where you sit, right??!!

      Give it another shot.....

      1. When scoping restaurants for our rehearsal dinner my wife and I had our hears set on Les Zyg. We hadn't been there but had read good things, loved the menu, and when we first saw the set-up, the room for the dinner would've been perfect. At the start of the meal we explained to our waiter that we had talked to the manager and were very interested in having our rehearsal dinner there. This typically led to a night of fantastic service at other restaurants. Not so at Les Zyg. We were also ignored for most of the night, we had to flag down a different waiter for water, the time between courses was awkwardly long, our plates sat empty for 20 - 30 minutes between each course. Is this a plot to try to sell more wine??

        All in all the service was so bad we had to cross them off of our list. Everything else from the food to the wine to the venue was perfect, but the service was so poor we couldn't chance having the dinner there. I don't think I"ll ever go back, it's so out of the way and the wine is overpriced... what's the point?

        1. I hate to pile on but a few friends and myself went this past summer for some wine and jazz. We ordered four different glasses of wine and they were so warm that they tasted like mulled cider with a spritz. I asked if we could cool down the wine, our waitperson left the table without saying a word and came back 5-10 minutes later with one small glass of ice, I asked her what we were suppose to do with the ice, she said put it in your glass! So it would of been watered down mulled cider? NO THANKS!
          I put $40 down on the table and we left, they didn't care, nobody even inquired why we left without drinking any of our wine. I could not believe that they could call themselves a "Wine Bar".

          1. It's odd how widely service experiences can vary. I've been to Les Zyg several times over the past year, often with a sizable party, and have gotten great, attentive service, usually from a tag team of several servers. The food was what it always is, pretty authentic-seeming Parisian bistro fare at decent prices. I think they've been eclipsed on this front by Petit Robert Bistro and Pierrot, but we all enjoyed our meals, certainly had none of the kind of outright losers identified here. (I expect hanger steak to be chewy, and like it that way.) The reds we ordered seemed at proper cellar temperatures.

            On one visit, I ordered a bottle of wine that they were out of, and the waiter left it on the bill, but that was the only service miscue, and I tend to believe that was an honest mistake.

            It's kind of hard to fathom how they could be so indifferent to someone who claimed to be shopping for rehearsal dinner venues, though. Is it possible that that's a line that they hear a lot? Seems unlikely, but I wonder.

            4 Replies
            1. re: MC Slim JB

              Regardless if it's a line they hear often (shopping for rehearsal dinner venues) and it's not the case as often as it might be said, wouldn't it behoove them to give uniformly excellent service to all couples anyway, in the anticipation of bringing in a larger party at a future date? It sounds like the staff just doesn't care if the OP had to get up to get their own water refill.

              1. re: LindaWhit

                I agree: the OP experienced some appalling service. I've just been luckier there, I guess.

                1. re: MC Slim JB

                  I've been pretty unlucky there, too.

                2. re: LindaWhit

                  When we were shopping around for the rehearsal we also went to Sel de La Terre. We informed the hostess that we were scounting for the rehearsal (note: we'd called the managers of all the restaurants beforehand to assure they had availability). The service at Sel de La Terre was sensational. From first course to last they were attentive, accomodating, and just downright friendly. At the end of the meal the manager came over and showed us the space, explained a run-down of the evening and gave us his card if we had any questions. AT Les Zyg we just crept into the back room at the end of the meal to check it ourselves, I can't explain the sour taste.

                  Unfortunately SDLT was too small for our party. Otherwise we'd have been there in a heart beat.

                  MC Slim, it is strange to see such a service discrpency, but then again, some servers are just better than others