Thursday, January 31, 2008

Waiter, there's a roach in my drink & other tales

CHOWKING. I was supposed to charge this thing to experience but after emailing feedback to Chowking twice and not getting any response, I feel compelled to write about it. I went back to Tacloban from Biliran on the eve of new year's day and decided to eat an early dinner at Chowking instead of a local restaurant for the sake of speed (I was really hungry after the nearly 3 hour trip) and convenience. I was sipping the last few drops of my iced tea to cap my lauriat meal when something caught my eye -- a small roach at the bottom. Good thing I didn't drink bottoms up as I usually do. When I complained to the crew, one nonchalantly told me the roach may just have dropped into the glass as it wasn't all wet. I didn't want to create a fuss or ruin the holiday spirit so after looking for the manager and being told he/she wasn't around, i decided to just charge it to experience. maybe write chowking to see whether the company would want to look into it. I'm a regular Chowking customer and it's a pity that a big company is coming up short on the cleanliness aspect. I mean what's the difference of eating in a big fastfood/quick service outlet and a hole-in-the-wall in the palengke if this is the kind of quality service you're gonna get? 

VIA MARE. And while we're on the subject of poor customer service, I was also disappointed about another favorite eating place - Via Mare. After running an errand in Quezon City sometime December, I went back to Makati at nearly 4pm to have a quiet, relaxed lunch at their Landmark branch. after 20-25 minutes of waiting, I was surprised that my order wasn't relayed to the kitchen. I'm normally a cool-headed and civil fellow but hungry, tired and largely ignored by the waiters, I called for the manager. Why am I not surprised that the manager wasn't there at the moment. While apologetic, the staff did nothing to appease me. I've been a faithful and loyal via mare customer all these years and it's saddening that even an institution like theirs is not spared the scourge of poor customer service.


Sidney said...

Chowking has branches all over the country and there are BIG differences between the different restaurants. Some are very clean and other are really very dirty !
I think it goes down to who manage the outlet and where it is located.

Being a business man myself I know how difficult it is to enforce rules. If you don't keep on checking, people tend to "forget the rules" and they end having a bad attitude towards customers.
It should not be the case but humans are humans... and I don't take anything for granted anymore.

By the way, there are a lot of Vitamine C in cockroaches ! ;-)

Oman said...

i am not an ambulance chaser but things like this makes me sick to my stomach. these establishments must be taught some lessons and if you have documented these things, a letter from a lawyer will surely make them notice you.

lagal[og] said...

sidney, i smiled, then let out a big laugh on the last sentence :-) the roach may also have lent the iced tea a different taste altogether ;-)

oman, perhaps that's true. i just don't like to be drawn into a big legal battle where it's going to be my word against a big corporation's. i'm just wondering about 1) the lack of cleanliness in some branches as pointed out by sidney; and 2) the lack of good customer service. i actually don't know if the crew told me off because he may think i put the roach into my drink deliberately so i can get a free meal.

etteY said...

hello! ask ko lang san branch po ng chowking sa tacloban? meron 2 branches kasi dito, one in the downtown area and the other is in Imelda avenue, beside Gloria Jeans Coffee, lagi kasi kami kumakain dun, anyway... marami na din ako naririnig feedback about Chowking....eeeewww! pero so far wala pa naman ako naeexperience na ganun. Parang ayaw ko na tuloy kumain ulit dun hehe!

lagal[og] said...

hi ettey, i ate at the chowking branch near manhattan inn where i stayed :-)

Anonymous said...

Any business that deals with food esp. restaurants need to be inspected regularly and if they fail should have warnings which leads to suspension or closure until the cleanliness aspect is resolved. Such incident is disconcerting. I would altogether stay away from Chowking if that's the case if only to enforce standard ethics and cleanliness.

At any rate, try other resto na lang.

Anonymous said...

the bigger they are, the harder quality is controlled. and i agree with sidney, di consistent ang food nila as well as serving in different branches.

Anonymous said...

Wag nyo gagalitin si Oggie pag gutom! :p

lba said...

kaya pala masarap ang iced tea sa chowking :)

lagal[og] said...

bai estan, i do agree with that kasi even the jollibee branch sa tacloban, iba ang lasa ng burger steak. but at least, i presume, mas malinis siya.

bai ferdz, tama ka dyan. pagurin mo na ako, wag lang gutumin :-P

lori, must be the secret ingredient! iced ipis tea ;-D

Anonymous said...

sabi na nga ba eh tatoy's na lang! hahaha!


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