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Aug 8, 2009 03:30 PM

"K" in Sioux Falls, SD; Thwarted, once again, attempting to do business locally!

We arrived at "K" at 1:00pm on August 8, 2009. After carefully checking the hours of operation and noting that the restaurant was open and taking in business, we entered. There was no line and we could see an open table in the back.

The hostess came towards, speaking on a cell phone, and we waited for her to finish her call and seat us.

After greeting us, she informed us that the open table was not available to us because it seated five and we were two people. She appeared regretful and told us the wait would be at least 15 minutes or longer.

I was so surprised! I said, "Even though you have an open table you will not seat us?" She said, "We have to leave that table open in case 5 people come in."

In my opinion, if the restaurant does not consider business on the customer's terms, the message sent is that the restaurant does not need the money.

My family and I operate a business. We are very aware of the challenges in the current economy. I cannot imagine having a customer walk through our door, wanting and waiting to buy something and turning this customer away. In fact, even more unbelievable is turning a customer away just in case a better one could walk in later.

Ironically, while we were waiting for the hostess, we were perusing the display case and happily picking out items that we planned to buy and take home after eating our lunch. It is possible that our sale could have ultimately totalled more than the imaginary party of four or five that could possibly arrive in the restaurant at some future time.

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    1. I'm sorry you had a bad experience there. I haven't been so I can't comment. However, I can recommend two places I really enjoy in Sioux Falls that are independently owned.

      The first is El Paraiso on E. 10th Street. Their bean and cheese pupusas with curtido are very good. We also love their carnitas dinner. They serve up a ton of carmelized pork with nicely spiced rice and beans. Be insistent to have tortillas included in the order. Three times they didn't include them which is a big bummer for me. Otherwise it's good homestyle Mexican food.

      My second fave is Saigon Panda on 26th Street. Good spring rolls (nix on the orange sauce stuff, ask for the Vietnamese dipping sauce) and a reasonably good pho can be had there, which is rare in S.F. Compared to anything on Eat Street in Mpls., it's not stellar, but good for what it is.

      3 Replies
      1. re: justalex

        Thank you so much for these suggestions. I was very frustrated at the time because I had an out of town guest with me who is a 'foodie.' I wanted her to experience something in Sioux Falls that was not a chain.

        1. re: jianji

          Like I said, compared to places in Mpls., these places might not be stellar. I guess you scared me with the word 'foodie.' LOL! El Paraiso is kind of divey and Saigon Panda is in a strip mall. It's definitely not upscale, but they do some dishes well and they're owned by locals.

          Have you tried Sanaa's Gourmet yet? I've never been but heard good things.

          Here's a link to any old thread from 2006 about Sioux Falls. There are comments there from as recently as 2008. Happy chowing!

          1. re: justalex

            Sanaa's is probably my favorite! :-)

            I did take my guest here. She was thoroughly impressed by the quality of the food! She thanked me profusely!

            When I visit this restaurant, I usually purchase additional to take home.

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