Open Table is a joke [split from Boston board]
(Note: This post was split from the Boston board at: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/566858 -- The Chowhound Team).
Open Table is a joke. If you make a reservation for a high-endresto there, they treat you like clueless bridge and tunnel people.
This post is not about Open Table but I can't help but respond. I have made reservations on OT at L'Espalier, Sorellina, Excelsior and The White Barn Inn just to name a few. Any restaurant treating someone differently for how their reservations were made should not be considered "high end" as they obviously don't get the concept of the hospitality business. All of the restaurants I have mentioned and many others have been most gracious.
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I've used OpenTable for many years - for reservations ranging from bistros and simple, little barbecue joints, to some of the finest, big-ticket restaurants in NYC, like Daniel, Atelier de Joel Robuchon, La Grenouille, Per Se and Le Bernardin. Honestly have never had a single issue arise resulting from OpenTable reservations.
There must have been some other reason that you felt you were mistreated. What exactly happened?
My experience with open table is that when I would try to reserve, the restaurant would be booked at the desired time slot but if I just popped my head in the restaurant, that slot would be open, so I stopped using it.
It's just you. I should know, I work at a restaurant that uses OpenTable. OpenTable is the entire reservation system for the restaurant. If you call to place a reservation, the person at the restaurant puts in the reservation through a screen with much the same format as the one that you use online. The only difference is that the person taking the res on the phone can look up empty slots in the book and set a reservation for a time that the computer thinks is full. On the reservation list, the only difference between a reservation made online and one made manually is a note in the reservation comments mentioning you made the reservation online.
re: JK Grence the Cosmic Jester
Thanks for the info. I've never had quite the same situation. I usually go with OpenTable first, because I'm usually scheduling a dozen restaurants for a particular trip and it's easy, plus I get the confirmation to add to my itinerary. These are usually made a few months out, but sometimes we'll be working a bit closer to the date. If there is no reservation available, and I, or my wife, or our guests, really want to dine there, I'll call. I have always been told the same thing - no reservations available. In a few instances, I've then called on of my concierge services, just in case. Always the same thing - no reservations available. If these fail, I'll call any influential friends in that area. Always the same - no reservations available.
Once, I did get some help from the concierge at our resort. She actually pulled some strings and got us into that spot, when all other avenues failed.
I've even had famous chefs come up as short as I have. That indicates that OpenTable is fairly accurate.
Now, I do wish that entering their site did not entail going through those danged welcome screens about a change in the interface, that happened years ago. Also, the Next buttons change positions between screen 1, 2 and 3. That could be simplified!