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Top of Hub Tops in Nothing But Mismanagement

p
parkerjh Jun 15, 2008 11:40 AM

It is baffling to me how poorly run this restaurant is for the prices it charges. I can't even begin to recount the ineptitude of not only the service staff, but specifically management from my last two visits. If it wasn't for a $50 gift card that they gave to people who got suckered into overpaying for the poorly produced Mother's Day Brunch, I'd have never gone back at all. Nevertheless, went to a show last night and figured a few appetizers, a light meal and a drink would be a nice way to end the night.

Soup was served cold. Informed waiter that although delicious (it actually was), that it needed to be heated. He was disgruntled to have to do this. Soup came back again- just as cold.

Salad was served filled with olives as the main ingredient yet the menu made no mention of that item. After pulling a Houdini act, server finally showed up at a point that it was too late to have the salad remade. When pointed out that the salad was chock full of olives, he said that I should have mentioned it earlier and it would have been replaced. Gee thanks for putting the blame on me Bucky.

After several more service gaffes and food quality issues, we decided dessert was not happening and asked to speak to a manager.

The manager never showed up. Upon check presentation, server made nasty remarks and my wife decided he deserved no tip. Upon seeing his gratuity, server again got obnoxious. I immediately went to the host stand and asked for a manager. (Hostess was gracious) It took over ten minutes for manager to creep out from behind his curtain. (Nice way to run a restaurant- from the back of the house). This roughly 22 year old junior manager was not equipped to manage his way out of a paper bag. I explained my disgust in the food, service, and overall experience. His best response was that he had already taken the soup off the check (that was cold....twice). Wow! Incredibly gracious hospitality- imagine doing all of that for me. I pointed out again, the multiple instances of poor service and bad food and he just blankly stared at me trying to figure out why I was not pleased with the soup compensation. He told me that's all he could do- he had already talked to the chef. Giving up, and knowing that nothing was going to be done, I left knowing that I would never, ever return again.

  1. trufflehound Jun 15, 2008 05:28 PM

    Nice view.

    3 Replies
    1. re: trufflehound
      d
      drbangha Jun 16, 2008 06:40 AM

      Several years ago my inlaws were visiting and we went to the TOTH. We went after dinner and were getting drinks and desserts, etc. Service had been pretty slow despite the fact the place was maybe a quarter full. My father in law from PA, for whatever reason, decides to ask the waitress which way is North after she brings our drinks.

      She looks confused, looks out the window, looks back at him, and then, with great ernest, begins an explanation about why there is no north and south in boston because the streets are old cow paths. It takes about 5 sentences to get this concept conveyed. About 2/3 of the way through she suddenly stops, then points south west, and says, "actually that way is north, there is Northestern [university]."

      This is now one of my father in law's favorite stories.

      1. re: drbangha
        LindaWhit Jun 16, 2008 07:26 AM

        LOL! Oh man, that's priceless! You at least have to give her props for knowing re: the cow paths as to how the streets are laid out.

        1. re: drbangha
          l
          lisa13 Jun 16, 2008 01:49 PM

          oh wow - that is the best story I've heard in a very long time

          looking to Northeastern as a reference point just kills me! good lord

      2. r
        Ralphie_in_Boston Jun 16, 2008 06:38 AM

        That makes me miss the Bay Tower room....which wasn't exactly excellent either but had better service.

        1. t
          tamerlanenj Jun 16, 2008 12:16 PM

          You didn't tip your server because your soup was cold and there were olives in your salad? And they took the soup off the check? Is this something you do with some frequency? Seriously, the waiter would have to punch me in the face to lose his tip.

          5 Replies
          1. re: tamerlanenj
            justbeingpolite Jun 16, 2008 12:28 PM

            I, too, have trouble not tipping. But in this case, it sounds like they didn't tip because: "Upon check presentation, server made nasty remarks and my wife decided he deserved no tip". If really rude and nasty, not unreasonable, I think.

            1. re: tamerlanenj
              aadesmd Jun 17, 2008 06:31 PM

              That is not what he said. There were nasty remarks made. I as well have had a tough time eliminating the tip completely. I think it is an aversion to confrontation,

              1. re: tamerlanenj
                Karl S Jun 19, 2008 06:01 PM

                A server making nasty remarks would be fortunate merely not to be tipped - a server making nasty remarks should be fired.

                1. re: Karl S
                  t
                  tamerlanenj Jun 19, 2008 06:22 PM

                  Alright, I'll say it. It sounds like a one-sided account to me.

                  1. re: tamerlanenj
                    sailormouth Jun 19, 2008 06:36 PM

                    Thank you.

                    Perhaps the OP would be willing to weigh in?

              2. jfood Jun 19, 2008 06:43 PM

                There are very few items that turn the tippo-meter to an automatic zero and nasty remarks is on the list. Given the circumstances described, the zero-tip sounds justified plus a call to the real manager the next day as well.

                Gift cert or not, this is unacceptable.

                2 Replies
                1. re: jfood
                  sailormouth Jun 19, 2008 07:37 PM

                  Right, but I think I would like to hear what these rude remarks were before we consider Top of the Hub "as nothing but mismanagement." I think we need some more from the OP.

                  1. re: sailormouth
                    invinotheresverde Jun 19, 2008 09:29 PM

                    Yeah, seems wonky to me that a waiter would be deliberately rude to the person who subjectively pays his salary.

                2. hotoynoodle Jun 19, 2008 11:36 PM

                  soup came back same temp -- was it supposed to be a chilled soup? this is a good time of year to ask that question. maybe that's why the waiter was grumbling?

                  olives were the main ingredient??? -- was it tapenade? c'mon.

                  you went because a gift card, fair enough. the place has never been known for its food or its service. (don't know why joints with a view generally suck, but that's another thread...) personally, i would have dialed my expectations way back and since $50 doesn't go far there, had a couple of drinks and an app and cut my losses.

                  sounds like you were miserable from the jump and didn't ask for a manger til the check was dropped, so it was too late for much to be done. sorry, but sometimes squeaky wheels don't get greased, and the place is busy enough with tourists that i don't think they care much about locals.

                  i just will never comprehend why people fume and stew and suffer through their personal version of hell. (lots of olives equal heaven for me, so to each his own, lol.)

                  speak up, peeps! you're paying!

                  1. MC Slim JB Jul 8, 2008 04:12 PM

                    Is it possible that this space, by dint of its location (big view) and its ownership (a succession of corporate chain restaurant owners) isn't, and maybe never will be, any good? I don't ever want to write a place off entirely, but this place has been emanating suck so consistently for so long that I want to say to anyone considering dining here: caveat emptor, which is shorthand for: you are going to get abused and ripped off.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: MC Slim JB
                      Karl S Jul 8, 2008 05:55 PM

                      Well, that is certainly its reputation of long standing.

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