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Whoa...Bayonna needs Restaurant Impossible help

Have eaten in the FQ many many times. I never picked Bayonna because sweetbreads and rabbit not my cup of tea.

But, back for the Final Four, and the gorgeous aura of the courtyard hidden away in the FQ and the huge ratings and Susan Spicer aura finally drew me in.

Holy Cow....what a total disappointment. So bad the ambiance couldn't even make a dent.

The hostess told us we had to wait. No biggie. She said, "Sit in the lounge and order a drink." No one in the lounge. After 10, went back to the hostess and ordered drinks. Pet peeve: Instead of placing our order, right in front of us, she stopped and chatted up a coworker who was there to meet friends. Drinks never showed up until we were finally seated at our table.

It became obvious that Bayona staff only caters to locals. We weren't even sure who are waiter was. Several came by - but no one seemed to "own us." We ordered at 7:45p and our entrees were finally brought after two requests at 9:30p. Mine, the hangar steak, was cold and tough as leather.. My husband's fish was fresh but totally uninspired. Funny part, Harry Shearer, reference SNL and Simpson voice overs sat next to us. He was totally absorbed with twitter but he had waited longer than we did and a waiter came up to him and asked him what he wanted for dessert ! No entree...skip to dessert.

They did take my ice cold late entree off the bill. so what....we weren't there to save money...we were there to eat what every one said was a fabulous meal. Never again would I go back to this very cool oasis in the FQ. We, as diners, were disrespected and were served horrible food.

BTW...their famous garlic soup was amazing with depth of flavor - despite being burned ever so slighly. Only "slightly burnt" bright side of visit.

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  1. Sorry to hear that. I haven't been to Bayona in ages, not because of the food, but because of just what you described: I waited, waited, until finally, after the fifth different waiter had passsed, I grabbed one and asked, Please, just WHICH of you who keeps walking past me is my waiter?! Service never got any better as the meal progressed. And don't get me started about the goofy wine/corkage policies and smug attitudes. Would love to go back but I'd kick myself if my ususal experiences were borne out again.

    1 Reply
    1. re: sanglier

      I went to Bayona for the first time back in January. While the food was excellent, the service was not very good. It left a bad taste, so to speak. But I liked the ambiance and got to meet the chef so that was nice. They do this weird thing where they have 2 servers splitting our table and they explained this to us when we were seated. We liked one of them, but the other was a mess.

    2. Earlier today I made reservations based upon previous recommendations. However, I am cancelling them. Too many great restaurants to have to tolerate this quality of food and service. Thanks Ambiance for the heads up!

      3 Replies
      1. re: cjml

        I don't doubt that this unfortunate event happened just as described, and it is a big shame, but that's not the typical Bayona experience. I've never had anything but friendly, attentive, timely team service and excellent food in about a dozen visits.

        1. re: uptownlibrarian

          I'm with you. I have always had a good time in there and I am not a regular so I don't know if anyone remembers me although maybe I stand out in a suit..

          1. re: hazelhurst

            I've had rather amateurish service the last couple of times I've been, but the food has never let me down.

      2. Wow, things seem to have changed.

        We have not been "locals" in a few decades, and even when we had some "in tow," they were unknown by the restaurant.

        Still, all was very good, from the FOH to the food, to the service and wine service.

        I am sorry to hear of your disappointing visit. What a waste of talent and a great location.

        Hunt

        1. sorry to hear about your Bayona experience .
          we visited in November and had an excellent meal.
          I even forgot my new hat and they called my cell phone from the reservation and let me know they were holding it.

          1. i stopped going as well (despite loving the sweetbreads) due to goof service policies... in my case i would call to request the courtyard for my reservation. the hostess on the phone would say theyre first come, first serve. then when im there, about to be seated and i asked for the neary empty courtyard -- and they say it's reserved for regulars. nice.

            total BS, in my book. dont play games. just state what your rules are and live by them.