A family owned Chinese restaurant in the Bay Area has a pretty sterling reputation and most reviews of the establishment are pretty positive.
Yelp reviewers are going to be angry again an hour later.
While Joseph Xue, the owner of the Wonderful restaurant in Millbrae, California says he’s too busy to care about online customer reviews like Yelp and Trip Advisor, his son was startled to discover a one star Yelp review from user “Dan W.” who claims that they refused to seat him since he was a party of one. –That or he surmises that maybe it was the way he was dressed; either way he decided to write a scathing review of his not so wonderful experience. Only problem is that after reviewing surveillance footage from the night in question it turns out his story was total BS!
Guy in hat: Dan W.
First: here is his review which Yelp later deleted:
“My experience was at around 730pm on a Wednesday. I was flying solo that night, after a particularly challenging day. The waiter came up and asked how many. I said one, I had planned to sit at the bar or get the food to go. She said "one? no, one?" and then ran off. I waited a minute at the door, and then left. They were busy and potentially understaffed. It's not that classy of a place, but they refused to seat me. Sure, I was wearing jeans and a baseball cap with my flannel shift not tucked in. I had no intentions of taking a full table, just any corner I could fit in, or order off the menu to go once the guy next to me was done with it. Oh well, next time I go out in a group of three to six we'll take our business elsewhere. The key to a good business is to be consistent in the small things. That sucks, I just wanted food and I had cash, just as I sat down two people called me back and my entourage of 6 had an amazing dinner at Thai stick.”
Now watch the video of what ACTUALLY happened:
On their website, the Wonderful management writes a great response to this restaurant troll who it seems spent more time writing a bad Yelp review than he actually did trying to get a table at the busy restaurant.
“In this first video, you can see that you entered at 19:07, which is earlier than you quoted. You can also see that you did not wait a minute at the door. You spent a total of 22 seconds in the establishment. This video also clearly shows that there were other patrons waiting. We are sincerely sorry that we forgot to recognize your very, very "VIP" status at wonderful, a status so special that you don't have to sign the waiting list like everyone else... I've never been to a restaurant where to refuse to seat people because they're wearing what you were wearing... You're dreaming if you think that's why you didn't get service.
Dan, we didn't refuse to seat you. You refused to wait in line like everyone else. You thought you were special, so special that you don't have to follow the rules. That's not true, we caught you.”
BOOM! You just got served! -Well actually he didn't get served, but you know what I mean. For the record Dan W. is not allowed back at Wonderful even if he wanted to go. I for one want to applaud the staff at Wonderful for taking the time to call this guy out. A lot of times in the restaurant or customer service industry they go by the adage “the customer is always right” – especially if you work at a big chain restaurant or retailer. The customer can come in and say whatever the hell they want to and it’s your job to stand there and take it like you’re their bitch.
Can there be a Yelp for Yelp reviewers?
Now days it’s even worse on the Internet, reviewers can anonymously write bullshit comments about YOUR BREAK ARTICLES THAT HAVE NO RELEVANCE ON ANYTHING- …er I mean, they can write negative YELP reviews about restaurants and the staff generally have no way to dispute them even if they are false. That’s why mom and pop operations are so great; they don’t always have to put up with that crap.
Follow Phil Haney on Twitter @PhilHaney