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The case of the horrible no good very bad service at North Fork Oyster Company in Greenport, NY

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Some of the worst service I've ever had at a restaurant. Inattentive, rude, careless, and sloppy. I am far from a snob about these things, but we had to ask for bread three times, and when it finally came we got three pieces for six people. The food runner had his thumb in one of my dining companion's bisque, and the busser dropped food in her lap. We had the audacity to ask for pepper and a waitress looked at me like I had insulted her. Our waiter hovered near other tables, but never once checked to see if we were happy or enjoying our meals, and acted frantic even though it was nowhere near a busy night. A shame, because the food was pretty good.

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  1. Huh? I am surprised. We had a fabulous meal there with great service and food. To me it was a bit too pricey for what it was but no complaints otherwise.
    Then again, we were there early on a weeknight and it was not too busy. Our server was a "seasoned" woman who had previously worked in another upscale place.
    I have found that too many of the "finer" North Fork restaurants do not attract and keep quality employees. There comes a point where the restauarant loses quality help and is happy to just get "warm bodies."
    Spotty service at an expensive place is a big red flag. We don't return to those places.

    6 Replies
    1. re: Motosport

      I do not know this restaurant, so I can't comment about it specifically. Many NF restaurants- and I'm sure this applies to the Hamptons and other summer destinations as well- rely on HS and college students on their summer breaks during summer. These kids are frequently very sweet, but their skills as servers vary from expert to pathetic. So far this summer, I've had excellent service at the NF restaurants I have gone to, but in the past I've seen some pretty clueless and incompetent help.

      1. re: EricMM

        Ditto EricMM!! Being local we do our best to patronize the Riverhead and North Fork restaurants. At the moderately priced places we'll put up with spotty inexperienced service but at $100 pp it is unacceptable.
        One relatively new place in Riverhead has outstanding and creative food but the service is painfully slow and inattentive. After three tries we are giving it a break before we go back.
        I spoke to the owner of another new restaurant in Riverhead and commented on the excellent service. He said it was one of his priorities to properly train the staff, constantly stay on top and keep them sharp. You won't hear: "You wanna nudda drink!"
        At another, not as upscale, new place on Main St I noticed the staff to be without experience but certainly eager. They are still going through growing pains. I hope they figure it out. The food is great.

        1. re: Motosport

          Just went to North Fork Oyster Company tonight. Food was great, and we had no problem with the service. Our waitress was exactly the young summer help type I had mentioned, but she was very sweet and did a perfectly good job, no issues at all. I do agree that it is pricey for what you get, but overall my wife and daughter agreed with me that it was worth a return visit.

          1. re: EricMM

            Restaurants, like people and most things in life just have a bad night.
            If it is as bad as the OP stated I would have brought it to the attention of the manager/owner. Their response would have made the decision for me as to whether to give it a second chance. Snooty and aloof, fuggeddahboudit! Concerned and compassionate, I am coming back.

              1. re: Motosport

                We did the response was a shrug and 'a oh well'.

      2. that's too bad, i always have high hopes for the new places, particularly in greenport. my sister and i went in on a whim in july, and while the food was good, the service was just ok. not bad enough that i would not return. i did think it was a bit overpriced. also, the menu offerings seemed oddly geared for fall/winter rather than summer.