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BAD night at Flora

marty S. Apr 14, 2008 07:57 PM

Had dinner Saturday night at Flora and experienced some of the most terrible service I have had anywhere in a long time. We had reservations at six and were promptly seated and then promptly forgotten. After having waited for far too long I finally told the hostess that we seemed to have been "overlooked". After some apologies we were told that no one had been assigned our table but that had been remedied and we could now look forward to our evening....NOT!!! I have never felt so invisible anywhere - we had to keep reminding them that we were there. We had an 8 o'clock show to make at the Paramount and nearly didn't get our desserts in time to make it. We were comped the desserts but still....I will not go back there for a few months hoping we can expect some improvement on the service side. The food was good but would have been much more appreciated had it arrived in a timely fashion. I don't understand how this restaurant made the "Top 100" - this was our third time there and only one has been somewhat acceptable.

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  1. pastryqueen RE: marty S. Apr 14, 2008 09:42 PM

    I keep hearing about inconsistencies in service but have heard the food is very, very good. I have been eager to try this place (especially for dessert) but have heard nothing but bad reports. Anyone else been and have good experiences with service? Do you think it's an issue of new restaurant or just bad staff?

    6 Replies
    1. re: pastryqueen
      JasmineG RE: pastryqueen Apr 14, 2008 09:45 PM

      I've been twice, and the service was fine both times, if a little green.

      1. re: pastryqueen
        Fig Newton RE: pastryqueen Apr 14, 2008 09:51 PM

        I was there with a group of 9 a couple weeks ago. With such a large group, I normally wouldn't even bring it up if there were service hiccups, especially for a newish restaurant. But we had a really lovely dinner there, and the service was just fine.

        I'd like to go back ... loved their cocktails. The hamachi appetizer was delicious, and I liked the rabbit sugo appetizer as well.

        1. re: pastryqueen
          susancinsf RE: pastryqueen Apr 14, 2008 10:20 PM

          I thought the service was reasonably fine given that I went right after opening: a bit unpolished perhaps,but basically fine. It was the food that I didn't think was worth a return visit, including my dessert, which came close but missed the mark. I certainly didn't think it was very, very good.

          Loved the room, however (other than the fact that it was freezing!) and the bar is appealing. I plan to go back for a drink after work some warm evening.


          Please report back if you try it.

          1900 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94612

          1. re: susancinsf
            JasmineG RE: susancinsf Apr 14, 2008 11:12 PM

            It's not freezing anymore! I'm frequently too cold in restaurants, so I remembered that you had said that, but those windows are closed now, and I was perfectly temperate (without my jacket on) both times I went, and neither time was a warm day.

            1. re: JasmineG
              Oakland Barb RE: JasmineG Apr 15, 2008 08:00 AM

              I've been a number of times and always found the service to be good until a visit a few weeks ago. It was awful.
              Our main courses were brought just as we started our apps and then returned to the table later, cold. The waitress seemed to have no control over the food.
              This was the first time I had run into poor service at Flora and I think, perhaps, it's an anomaly. At least that's my hope...

              1. re: Oakland Barb
                marty S. RE: Oakland Barb Apr 15, 2008 08:39 AM

                I hope it was an anomaly too and am glad to hear that others have had better experiences. By the way, the desserts were fabulous.

        2. Robert Lauriston RE: marty S. Apr 16, 2008 10:56 AM

          I've been about half a dozen times (obviously I like the food) and the service has been mixed, though so far not in a way that affected the food. Seems like there's a lack of communication between the hosts and the waiters and high turnover among both groups.

          I would strongly recommend going elsewhere for a pre-concert meal.

          Presumably it made Michael Bauer's top 100 because they recognized him and paid extra attention.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Robert Lauriston
            Ruth Lafler RE: Robert Lauriston Apr 16, 2008 11:02 AM

            The fact that the service has always been a weak spot at Dona Tomas doesn't bode well for Flora. Still, I'm going to have to check it out myself.

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