Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Not About Food >
Jul 6, 2010 09:51 PM

Was this too long to wait? What should we have done (if anything?)

Last Saturday night I was with a party of 10 for dinner at an Italian restaurant. I guess it would be classed as a moderately upscale place with white linen tablecloths and all-middle-aged male servers.

We ordered our food and it took an hour and ten minutes for it to arrive! I thought that was too long to wait.

We all just kind of put up with it and didn't say anything.

Is this kind of wait time common for a large party?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Yes, this was way too long for food to arrive. I would have become the cranky customer and have been causing a scene.

    1. I would not have waited that long without some major discussion with the staff. That amount of time is uncalled for. I hope they at least comped you some drinks!

      1. Were there appetizers/salads served in the interim?

        1. Why didn't you say anything?

          Yes, it is too long and no, it is not common or acceptable.

          1. well, hang on a second. are you talking about how long it took to get mains, or how long it took to get everything through dessert? or, are you talking about how long it took to get the very first salad on the table?

            other little details. what time on a saturday night, and how big of a place are we talking about? chain/non chain?

            if you sat down at a busy and small place (i'm assuming a serious cooked-to-order menu, not applebees, here) with a party of 10 at bang 7:30 on a saturday night, and some folks in the party ordered well-done porterhouses for their mains-- yeah, an hour wait seems reasonable. that's why drinks, nibbles, starters, small plates and first courses are on the menu in the first place. it's unclear whether your party ordered starters & whether they were served in a timely fashion and then you merely waited for your mains. . . or whether y'all skipped the starters, just ordered mains, and thought you'd be signing the check in 45 mins.

            at most non-chain semi-fine and fine dining establishments, which seems to be what you're describing, a large party (8-10 or more) is assumed (by the restaurant) to be a 2 hour minimum time commitment, soup to nuts.

            1 Reply
            1. re: soupkitten


              Did it take an hour+ to get anything, or an hour+ to get your entire meal?

              I'm guessing an hour+ to get anything and no, that is not acceptable.