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Honey Brown's... a horrible experience.

creamfinger Mar 12, 2011 07:37 PM

After reading good things about the food at Honey Brown's in Summit I was eager to try it, especially since Southern comfort food is not something that you find too much of in NJ. Sadly, I never got the chance. I reserved a table, specifically requesting one away from the front door since it was a cold night and I would be with my parents, who are elderly get cold easily. They assured me that would be no problem. After an hour on the road we arrived, and were promptly seated directly in front of the door. My father reminded them that we had reserved a table away from the front door. My mother was still in her coat and gloves and was clearly very cold. Their response was to my father, "well things changed since we made your reservation. We had a larger party reserve a table and we needed to make room." Normally a response like this would send me right out the door, but we had travelled a long way, and we had no other place to go, so we asked how long the wait would be for another table, and we were told "take it or leave it, we're booked solid". Needless to say, we chose to leave. I can forgive an off night for bad food, but treatment like this is something I can't forgive. I wish them all the success in the world, but I won't be back.

Honey Browns
7 Union Place, Summit, NJ 07901

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  1. Quine RE: creamfinger Mar 12, 2011 07:52 PM

    Your experience certainly merits a call and an email to the owner. Clearly, whomever that was who gave you such bad FOH experience need t o be brought to their attention and the owners can apologize to you.

    No excuse what so ever for this! Your reservation was called in advance and before the other with a very specific and easily met condition. NO reason you should not have had the hospitality one expects normally, and I might say, especially from a place that works off the "southern comfort food" vibe.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Quine
      creamfinger RE: Quine Mar 12, 2011 08:07 PM

      Your suggestion is a good one, but I got the feeling we were talking to the owner. He certainly acted like he was.

      1. re: creamfinger
        Quine RE: creamfinger Mar 12, 2011 09:42 PM

        Think a bad FOH person would act like someone less than the King Of Siam? Call and Email the owner. Email first then call after a few days.

        At least give yourself a chance to get a honest sense of closure but hopefully more a chance to let a better result.

        1. re: Quine
          creamfinger RE: Quine Mar 12, 2011 10:31 PM

          Please don't think less of me, but before this post goes any further I have to ask a question... what does FOH stand for?

          1. re: creamfinger
            Quine RE: creamfinger Mar 12, 2011 10:37 PM

            FOH Front of House. Sorry for using jargon. Back is kitchen staff, Front is Host/server sorta staff.

            1. re: Quine
              creamfinger RE: Quine Mar 13, 2011 09:53 PM

              Ah ok, that makes sense now. I would actually characterize the experience as FUBAR.

    2. menton1 RE: creamfinger Mar 13, 2011 06:05 AM

      I hear the absolute BEST Southern Soul food in NJ is at Freshwaters. in Plainfield. Anybody been there?

      1. Quine RE: creamfinger Mar 17, 2011 09:17 PM

        Any updates on how this worked out for you creamfinger?

        2 Replies
        1. re: Quine
          creamfinger RE: Quine Mar 18, 2011 01:46 AM

          I suppose I should provide closure to everyone who took the time to read this.

          When the owner discovered that I had posted a similar review on Yelp, he sent me a personal message, with what can only be described as a "non-apology" apology. "I'm very sorry you had this experience with us, blah, blah, blah. I can assure you nobody working for our restaurant would behave that way, blah, blah, blah." He then went on to imply that it was my father who was lying about having requested a table away from the door. He said that he was assured by his wait staff that we had been offered other seating options which we refused in favor of storming out. Storming out? … With two people in their late 70’s in tow? That last absurdity, combined with the implication that my father was the actual culprit in causing all the problems gave me reason to think his “apology” was less than sincere. Never the less he did take the time to contact me to apologize (as it were), and he did offer to have us return for a special dinner (he stopped short of using the word “free”), so I told him I would remove the Yelp comments; which I did.

          In retrospect maybe I shouldn’t have taken my comments down, but my goal wasn’t really to hurt his business, just to vent my frustration and maybe get the owner to notice. Since I did that and I think that Yelp can occasionally be too powerful in its influence I chose to do what I did.

          1. re: creamfinger
            Quine RE: creamfinger Mar 18, 2011 09:55 AM

            Thank you for your reply and letting us know how it turned out.

        2. menton1 RE: creamfinger Mar 18, 2011 02:34 PM

          Anyone been to Freshwaters?

          2 Replies
          1. re: menton1
            MarlboroMan RE: menton1 Mar 20, 2011 07:00 PM

            No, but you can check out the menu here:


            1. re: MarlboroMan
              menton1 RE: MarlboroMan Mar 20, 2011 07:49 PM

              I saw the menu a while ago. I was looking for a first hand report. Most CH-ers are aware of menus on restaurant websites...

          2. a
            Applecheeks RE: creamfinger Mar 21, 2011 02:57 PM

            The Southern Belle, on Bloomfield Ave. in Montclair, has a very similar menu to Honey Brown's. I've been to both places and enjoyed the experince at The Southern Belle much more than Honey Brown's. I felt the food was much better, the servers very warm and friendly and the prices were a tad cheaper. If I had the option to go to either place, I would certainly pick the Southern Belle over Honey Brown's - where I found the food to be ok but the staff to be a bit uppity.

            Honey Browns
            7 Union Place, Summit, NJ 07901

            1 Reply
            1. re: Applecheeks
              Quine RE: Applecheeks Mar 21, 2011 03:24 PM

              Thanks good to know.

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