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Effendi's (Cranston, RI) - what's the problem with seating?

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OOliver Jul 21, 2010 01:19 PM

Saturday evening, my long lost friend and I decided to meet at Effendi's in Cranston for a relaxing dinner and conversation (she's the one I haven't seen in 15 years, as I mentioned on another thread). Anyhow, we decided to meet at 5:30, knowing the dinner crowd wouldn't be there for at least another hour. We both noticed on the sign at the front door there would be live music that evening.

We told the hostess (who had to be in her mid-20s) that we wanted to be seated as far away from the live music as possible, since we wanted to hear ourselves talk. She agreed, looked around the restaurant and said "I know - follow me!" which was away from the front door and towards the back (kichen area, which was fine).

We got seated, ordered our drinks, apps and meals as the restaurant started filling up (as we expected). Between the apps and our meals, I notice instruments being set up right behind my dining partner (she had her back to the kitchen area, she was facing the front door). They were so close, i could throw a piece of bread at the drums and hit it easily. As we got served our dinners, the music starts up - with no other table to move to since the restaurant is filled. There was the end of our conversation.

The waitress then came over and asked if we wanted desert, which we told her we did but we refused to stay. We then told her about our evening - how we specifically asked NOT to be seated near the music - and that's exactly where the hostess sat us. She half-heartedly apologized. I won't be going back there anytime soon (the food was OK, not as good as it was when I went a month earlier on a Sunday evening - even though I ordered the same dinner.)

I stopped going to Baccarro for this reason as well.

I would ask for a certain waiter's table (who is a friend of mine - last time I even made a reservation ahead of time requesting his table! ) the hostess would look at her chart and seat us. I would ask the hostess once more - are you sure this is Andy''s (not his real name) table? "Yes it is' she would answer, drop us our menus , walk away - and sure enough someone else would come to introduce themselves as our server. When I would ask to be moved to Andy's section (and remind them I made a reservation to be seated at his section), they told me nothing was available. My friend and I got up and left the restaurant (Andy told me to do this once before when I told him my plight).

If you're going to a nice restaurant, and you specifically ask NOT to be seated somewhere, or ask /make a reservation for a particular waiter's table...how can there be such a disconnect with the host or hostess? How can they not know what you are asking for? Is it really that much of a big deal to be seated where you choose, since this is part of the dining experience? I don't think it's an unreasonable request (unless the restaurant is packed, and dyou didn't reserve something ahead of time).