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Takeout/delivery snafus

I was recently reminded of a classic takeout mix-up that happened to me a few years ago. I ordered a pizza with hamburger and anchovies. The counter clerk must have abbreviated the request on the order slip, and the cook misread it. I was already home and ready to dig in to my tasty dinner when I opened the box and saw that instead of hamburger and anchovies, it was made with ham and artichokes!

Not a catastrophe but I was really psyched for anchovies and this just did not hit the spot.

Any other dyslexic dining disasters out there? Unexpected delivery "surprises"?

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  1. One of my friends was a salad frantic. He seemed to have issues getting the right dressing via, Drive Thru(DT). Apparently he wanted Ranch dressing, but not the French dressing that he ended up with. It seems that are confusing in the DT communications system. It wasn't till I told him he should order his dressing as "Creamy White Ranch Dressing".

    One day, he called me over a firewood project we had been planning. He nudged me by treating me to lunch. At the order marquee he ordered me my burger, fries and drink. He proceeds to order his salad and I heard "I want a packet of Ranch dressing". I said to him that you will end up with French again. The 'of Ranch' got mingled enough to sound like French to me. Then a voice came back, what number is that dressing? WTH??? (We thought) They started numbering their dressings on their ordering marquee to avoid the confusion. Oh, I guess KISS works.

    7 Replies
    1. re: RShea78

      There used to be a Taco Bell by my apartment back when I was a starving college kid. No matter how clearly you spoke into the microphone, you got a bag of food that was nowhere near what you had ordered. Usually they got the approximate number of items right, but an order for two bean burritos, three hard shell tacos and a drink would come back as chilicheese burritos, taco salad and a burrito supreme. tI was like a game trying to figure out what we would end up with.

      1. re: lulubelle

        That's hilarious cuz that just happened to me last night! I ordered a cheesy double beef burrito, a burrito supreme, and the new ultimate nachos (don't waste your money) and ended up with a chili cheese burrito (fine, I like those), and a grilled stuft burrito (ick). I've learned after many trips to Taco Bell over the years, to always order one additional item because it goes without question that you will always end up with at least one incorrect item and one item that turns out to not taste as good as you thought it would.

        I've also gotten the entirely wrong pizza delivered to me before. I ordered a supreme, I got a hawaiian with BBQ sauce. I HATE BBQ sauce. That was the ultimate disappointment because by the time the pizza was delivered and I got it upstairs and opened the box, the pizza place was closed.

        1. re: Stillwater Girl

          had the same problem with pizza saturday night. Ordered an everything pizza with half no meat (so just the veggies) and got half everything and half meat. I really took the time to explain to the (Spanish) girl on the phone that I don't eat meat so please make sure one half had just veggies but .........

          of course by the time the pizza guy had left and we had got out plates drinks napkins it was too late.

        2. re: lulubelle

          I am convinced that everyone who works at the Taco Bell by my house is stoned, except one woman. If she's taking your order it's correct. Otherwise, who knows.

          Once, at a Taco Time drive-thru I ordered a soft taco meal (mexi fries, drink) and a quesadilla. The guy checked my bag, naming each thing, handed it to me, closed the window and walked out of my view. I looked and there was only the box of mexi fries - no soft taco, no quesadilla. No idea what he was doing when he checked. I sat there trying to get the attention of the people inside. When I finally flagged another person down and told him what I was missing, he got the rest of my food. As he handed it to me, he leaned out of the window and said quietly "Sorry - the manager is trying to work the window." The eye roll was PRICELESS.

          1. re: lulubelle

            I grew up near a Wendy's that was the same way. Mom and I used to bet on how off our order would be. I don't think any order was ever correctly executed.

            1. re: Janet from Richmond

              We've been going to Aruba for 11 years - 12 coming u yea!!! Anyway, back when we first went we ordered a couple of pizzas from our resort. I like fresh tomatoes and onions on a crispy pizza w/extra cheese and DH likes pepperoni on crispy with xtra cheese. Anyway, up they come to our unit with 8 EIGHT pizzas. Somehow our order translated to 8 pies. We got a big laugh on that one.

            2. re: lulubelle

              LOL...my DH and always joke that we're going to stop ordering specific things and just ask for however many items. I think we actually discovered the root of the problem the other day...at the bottom of the receipt is a summary that totals the number of drinks and the number of items. Who cares what they are, as long as there's enough stuff in the bag? Half of it tastes the same anyway...

          2. My mom and dad went out to dinner one night, and the waitress asked if they would like anything to drink before dinner. My dad said" I'll have a cup of coffee", and my mom ordered a cocktail. The waitress came back with two cocktails, and my dad asked her what she had given him. She said " You ordered a kamakaze!- My dad told her it was a cup of coffee, not a kamakaze- and she said " I didn't think you looked like the kamakaze type!

            1. When I was in high school, I worked drive thru at McDonald's. We were given 30 seconds to get an order out once the person got to the window (I think it was 2 minutes from the time the order was placed but it's been a long time and I can't remember exactly). The boxes are muffled so you can barely hear the person, never mind the, "Oh, wait, change that cheeseburger with no pickles to a hamburger with extra mustard...oh, no Johnny changed his mind, he wants chicken nuggets instead..." with the screaming in the background. Add that over a shift of 6-8 hours, busy lunch/dinner service, minumum wage, frenzied managers, hundreds of items packed. Mistakes are bound to happen.

              1 Reply
              1. re: chowser

                ditto to that...I worked at a Wendy's in university and had that unreasonable time limit to get the food out the door too. We had a couple of burgers go out sans meat.

              2. Ohhh I SO can beat your anchovy mix up !

                In my leaner, early post-uni days, we ordered a pizza from a place that delivered that, plus your other typical greasy spoon items, like fish and chips . Maybe had ordered a pizza and some fries.

                Well the order comes and not only did we get our pizza but had an apparent "freebie" of a small fish and chips, and gravy. We dove into our good fortune (hey it was cheap days), only to have the take out call half way through our mini-meal to tell us........that they had inadvertantly sent us someone's doggy bag by mistake.

                There is no amount of mouthwash that rinses that feeling out I tell you.

                2 Replies
                  1. re: im_nomad

                    At Burger King I got a sack of parts what I believe to be for their coffee maker, for my DT order. I cought the mistake when the window person set the bottom of the sack in my hands. My comment was, "geez, if these burgers are this hard, I better make sure it is really food". The widow person eyes rolled, as to move along - its right,... till I pulled out a brass looking part. The window person must have passed out as there was about 6 people crammed into the take out window area. I did hear someone in the back yelling that his parts bag was missing, so I hollered back, I got it! Yikes, I hope they sanitized the place as the repairman appeared like a nasty sewer worker.

                    My money was cheerfully refunded.

                  2. One time I ordered an antipasto salad - Menu did not say anything other than the title of the salad. I get it home (after a 2 mile drive that took 20 minutes because of snow) and I open the box and it is covered with tuna salad. YUK. In my experience antipasto salads are lettuce with delicious cured meats and cheeses - not tuna and mayo!

                    Another - ordered an italian sub with the works on it - usually this would be oil and vinegar... nope they slathered it in mayo. Who on earth puts mayo on an italian sub?!?

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Chefsquire

                      ""Who on earth puts mayo on an italian sub?!?""

                      Americans! ;-)

                      1. re: RShea78

                        And don't forget Canuks! They put Mayo on french fries too... eek!

                      2. re: Chefsquire

                        Who puts mayo on an Italian sub? Southerners! They'll put mayo on anything down here. My fave local pizzeria, run by an Italian via NY, had to start putting mayo, in addition to oil and vinegar, on his cheesesteaks. It grosses him out totally, but that's what the customers insisted on.

                      3. Okay, so a few of us have mentioned the inability of Taco Bell to get an order straight. I have another, Jimmy Johns! I swear I have never gotten a delivery order come correctly. I'll order a country club and get a sorry charlie. You say no mayo, you get extra mayo. I think they do it on purpose just to see if anyone will call. I never have, I'm not really that picky and if I'm hungry (or lazy) enough to pay someone to bring food to me I'll basically eat whatever I'm given. Although I have noticed all their delivery drivers have seriously bloodshot eyes...

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Stillwater Girl

                          mayo on a sub???? My g-son PLUS xtra xtra vinegar on top eeeew!

                        2. I frequently go to a local place and order a cup of chicken salad to go or tuna salad. I never know until I get back to work and open the container what i have received. I order chicken and get tuna and vice versa. My surprise lunch.

                          1. I sometimes order take-out from a vietnamese place nearby, and when I've gone to pick up my order, I'm not sure they've ever gotten it right. All their food is good, and all costs about the same, so I don't really mind, but it's pretty funny when "Bo bun nem" turns into "Pho bac". Between the crappy telephone they have and all the kitchen noise, you know it's happening, you just don't know what you can do about it except laugh.

                            1. That is sacrilege! To deny the love of anchovies should be a crime. I love anchovies, and when I order a pizza you can rest assured it has those little salted bits of heaven on it! I once ordered a pizza, loaded with heavy anchovies. I get the pizza, and it is sans anchovies. I actually called the place, said "there are no anchovies on this pizza" and the reply? "Oh you were serious... we thought you were joking" Needless to say they promptly sent over a new pizza with about 40 of the little devils on it! I peeled off half, and put them on the "dry" pizza, and had 2 pizzas just the way I like them. Now when I call.. they know I really do want anchovies :)

                              1. I recently ordered some Indian delivery. When they told me the total ($31ish, including a $5 delivery fee) and asked how I would pay, I said I would pay with cash. I said, "I will pay with forty dollars." I thought that knowing how much I would pay WITH would help the delivery person stay safe by not having to carry too much cash. The person on the phone reminded me that the delivery fee was already included, and I replied that I knew that and I was merely saying that I had two twenty dollar bills, so I would need about nine dollars change. Apparently they still thought I meant I would pay $40. My food arrived in half the expected time (yay!) and the driver took the full $40 without offering me any change. When I asked for my change (considering I had been charged for delivery) he gave me a REALLY mean look and was deliberately slow in counting back my change. The food was good though- next time I'll just do pick up; it's less stressful.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Jetgirly

                                  did you tip the delivery person?

                                2. Does it count if, rather than getting the wrong food, you get no food at all? Our company has an annual inventory day when we have the thrill of coming in on a Saturday and counting every last piece of stock in our warehouse. The only thing that makes it bearable is the promise of pizza - lots of pizza - for lunch.

                                  This year, the boss' wife was distracted. By 11:45 stomachs were grumbling, but she didn't place the order until about 1 PM. She gleefully offered to give people a choice: pizza, which would be delivered, or curry, which she would pick up. About 1/3 of us chose curry, the others ordered pizza. By 2 PM the pizza hadn't come. People were getting grouchy. By 2:30 there was nearly a mutiny. She called the pizza place and they said that their power had gone down - with the pizzas in the oven. Weird thing is, our power was fine and we're only located a few blocks away. Finally, she got in her car to pick up the curry. Would you be surprised if I told you that the people who ordered the pizza devoured the curry, before those of us who had ordered curry had even reached the table?

                                  Worst part is that she made a big show and dance of ordering more curry for the rest of us. Went back out to pick it up. It was now 4 PM and we were starving. She waltzed back in with the curry, declared herself 'exhausted' from driving all over town (out and back twice, more like), and went home. The rest of us stayed until 7 PM and a few brave souls came back the following day to finish.

                                  Guess what - it was one of our more productive and successful inventories! The pizza place, however, appears to have gone out of business.

                                  1. I think this may be a regional thing, but I will defer to the rest of you for your analysis. My SO likes his coffee with cream and Splenda. Well, really he likes half and half, not cream. I am not sure if it is just a Buffalo NY thing but when I go thru a drive thru and ask for a "coffee with half and half and Splenda", I get a black coffee made with 1/2 decaf and 1/2 caffinated coffee with Splenda. So now I just say "cream". I never had a problem with this downstate NY, so I am thiking it MAY be regional?? *shrug*

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: L_W

                                      they are misinterpreting a "half caff" for half and half. That's an easy mistake, since most people do refer to it as cream. Most places don't have a choice between "cream" and "milk" so it's either with cream or without cream. Saying half and half makes them think half decaf, half regular.

                                      1. re: rockandroller1

                                        Oooo...very good point! I guess I am such a coffee junkie that I forget that decaf is even an option. Now that I have stated asking for "cream", I have yet to have a issue.

                                        1. re: L_W

                                          Someone once called decaf "Bean Sweat" and jfood can not forget it.

                                          1. re: jfood

                                            Going to a drive thru always reminds me of the "Peanuts" Christmas cartoons on TV when the grownups speak.. Waa Waaa Waa Waa Waaa Waaa Waaa Waaa Waaa Waaa Waaa Waa, would you like fries with that. And me living in south Florida the language barrier is even worse. When I get totally frustrated I just quote my alltime favorite news anchor. In the words of Rose Anne Rosanna Dana....."NEVERMIND"