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Oct 7, 2009 06:59 PM

Salumeria Rosi - is pre-set table time standard?

They said we would have the table for up to 1 1/2 hours, as they have another reservation following us. When I hesitated they said that was standard, given they are a small restaurant. I appreciate being told the terms in advance, but wondering whether others have had similar experience.

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  1. No way is that a standard. That might be the average amount of time people spend there, but that is not an industry standard.

    But at least they told you in advance. I was in a birthday group of 8 people at Frank in the EV, and the waitress refused to serve us another round of drinks because they needed the table and "most people finish in this amount of time." This after they rushed our appetizers out before the wine arrived, and plunked down our entrees alongside the apps.

    I challenged her and went to the manager, who defended her, saying "these people need the table." Will never, ever go back.

    1. Not a standard practice but maybe standard for them. If he tells you in advance, then that is something you've accepted when you take the table. What they did at Frank is unacceptable. I was once at Haru on lower Park Ave, late in my meal the maitre'd asked if he could buy us a drink or dessert and coffee at the bar since they needed our table to make an 8 top... I happily took the deal and wasn't even greedy ordering just 12 year old scotch. Being nice often works best and restauranteurs should know this

      1. When I made a reservation there that didn't happen to me. But my reservation was around 9P.

        I've been alerted of the 1.5 hour thing at several restaurants, and they were places where one should be done in that amount of time (eg. no Per Se). I'd rather know beforehand, and the reservationist generally does it in a very friendly way that I don't find it offputting -- though recently I made a reservation at Yasuda and had encountered the rudest man and nastily told me that I must be out within an hour and a half, otherwise I will not be allowed to make a reservation. He was fine when I saw him in person but was quite a bastard on the phone.

        1. I think it is standard practice there. I was there earlier this year and made a reservation -- I was told all that was availalbe were bar seats (no problem -- my friend and I like to sit at the bar) and that we'd have to out in1.5 hours for another reservation. When we were seated, the bartender told us that they say that a lot and it isn't necessarily the case; and it wasn't the case that night.

          1. I've only gone as a walk-in later in the evening (around 8:30 or 9), or at lunchtime when the place is nearly empty. I have not been told about a 1.5 hour limit, but I wouldn't be surprised (or put off, personally) if they had one for peak hours. I wouldn't say that it's an industry standard to impose a time limit, but it's not so unusual in NYC, either. Hope you don't take it personally, uwsgrazer. If I had a restaurant you could definitely sit for as long as you wanted!

            1 Reply
            1. re: cimui

              It's not clear to me whether the time limit is standard at Salumeria Rosi but in this one instance I guess they were able to offer me an 8:30 table with the proviso that they would get the table back at 10 p.m. for another reservation. Just for the record, the reservationist was certainly nice enough about things. Anyway, now that I've had time to mull things over in this one instance I don't think the time limit works for me so I'll probably cancel, but do hope to visit at some point. cimui, you would always be welcome at my place too!