I am basically a new employee (server) at Cracker Barrel in North Carolina. When I first hired in, the trainer was very helpful and nice making it a good transition coming out of early retirement. I do need to work as I was recently divorced and had to surrender half of my pension. Back to the subject, the managers make it so nice for you when you first get on the floor, but after you are on board for a month, the real Cracker Barrel comes out of the walls. Besides me working my area of 4 tables and when it's busy that's walking, refills, serving, busing tables, making your silverware quota and running food out to other tables.
One extremely busy day, I got a drink of water and I heard my name being screamed out to me about running food out to tables. They do not talk to you, they holler at you like you are some kind of lowlife lothario. I do not think or even recall when I was allowed to drink or eat a little break. I thought it was the law when you work over a certain period of time that you are allowed breaks. Well, not at this Cracker Barrel you do, and if you do your job is at stake.
I actually am a nervous mess when I work as I feel that I am doing something wrong all the time day in and day out. Managers never praise you for a good job, they always look for fault and will be glad to notify you of it, believe me. I really need the job, but it's a shame that business with food service is like Walmart in all means.
JOPLIN, MISSOURI -- Not only are all of those things true but their respect for their employees is nonexistent. About a year ago someone had the wise idea of giving the managers a bonus for making "goal hours" meaning that if they make so much in sales for an hour they get a bigger bonus. Sounds innocent enough, right? But the manager at the store in Joplin, MO, the general manager has taken this to an extreme. He now gives servers, who make $3.73 an hour two table sections on the weekends, when we should be making our money for the week. Keep in mind some of these people have worked there for over ten years and can handle more, and did before the goal hour bonus took effect.
Now we are not making enough money to pay our bills or even fill up our gas tanks on a weekend night, while his check is growing, and CB managers would certainly make enough to pay the bills without the bonus at all. I encourage all who, even if you like Cracker Barrel, to skip the one in Joplin, MO. There is one in Springfiled, MO, just 60 miles away, or one in Tulsa, just 100 miles. Some regard has to be shown to these people as the manager has said that it's an employer's market and he can do what he wants. I just think everyone should know how this company treats people.
FLORIDA CITY, FLORIDA -- In 17 years of working in hospitality/restaurant industries, I have never experienced such filth and lack of sanitary protocol as I do at the Cracker Barrel in Florida City. As an employee, I cannot drink from their cups without lining it with a plastic baggy. All of the staffers implemented this practice once they witnessed myself doing this. The cups sit in racks slightly above the tile floors that are constantly wet with spillage. All the spillage from the floors are then splashed back onto the cups whenever anyone passes by.
There is also something wrong with their dish washing apparatus. Four out of five dishes/cups are covered in dried eggs and gravy because the apparatus isn't being maintained and can't clean properly. Some servers don't have time and have to use the dirty dishes, others just don't care that the dishes are dirty and use them anyway. Also, I have witnessed the Florida City Cracker Barrel keep up to 20 full trash cans inside the building next to the dry storage area and break room where the employees eat their meals.
Only when there is enough time and too many full trash cans will the cooks take the garbage that's fermenting from inside the building to the dumpsters outside. Eat at own risk!
NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE -- I have been a long-time customer of Cracker Barrel, & had the idea that they were a good, home-sweet-home restaurant. Well it hit me like a ton of bricks when I heard what some of my friends who are current employees had to say about the establishment.
The managers constantly screw up schedule requests. One girl told them early on that she had to pick up her child at a certain time, so she had to be off by then. They agreed to this. When her shift came around, they held her longer than they agreed to. She stayed as long as she could, but finally had to clock out and leave (of course). She was terminated immediately. A cashier was robbed by a scamming customer that played a word game with the cashier, and walked away with $50! The problem: they took that money right out of the cashier's paycheck, and told him they wouldn't go after the criminal because it would cost $65.
These employees dedicated hundreds of hours to the company, but they just go and treat them like money bags to pull from. Even The Golden Corral treats its employees better than Cracker Barrel! This place is HELL to work at - just ask an employee. PLEASE don't patronize this sell-out, money-hungry, corrupted HELL HOLE!
SHERMAN, TEXAS -- Less than a month ago on a Friday night I tried their fried fish special. It didn't taste fresh fried or feel it either. It was dry and warm like it was cooked that morning and kept in a warming oven all day to simply be plucked out and served. Vegetables like mashed potatoes and mac & cheese appear the same way. Only the green beans simmered in water appeared hot. Sent food back and my same plate was returned only to have been microwaved.
Last night I ordered grilled chicken breast smothered with pepperjack cheese and peppers. Sent it back twice to be reheated, same plate I had because I dipped from everything to see what else was "warm" after the first time I sent it back only to have it slightly warmer. I refuse to pay for food to be microwaved and be called dinner out. Even fast food places in Sherman serve hotter food than this.
Maybe a call to the health department to check their food temps will fix it or get them shut down once and for all. Oh and our server said she would tell the manager. He never came to our table or any others to see how the food or service was. He stood outside of the kitchen, looking at what must have been daily tally sheets.
COVINGTON, LOUISIANA -- Let me start by saying we have 4 kids and they all love Cracker Barrel. We travel all the time, and can't tell you how many we have been to. This is the second time we have ordered from here. The first time was a week after it opened. Service was horrible, they could have cared less, food took forever to receive, order was incorrect & food did not taste anything like what we are used to and all this with no apology. We didn't complain, figured since they were new and young hires that maybe it was just an off day because of being so new.
Tonight we ordered take out, put on hold several times, and again order was wrong but this time we did not even receive part of our order. My husband called to complain, again put on hold but not to speak to the manager simply because they didn't feel like dealing with it. We asked to speak to manager after and they told us they were not available nor did they even ask what we would like to do about our missing food. They just flatly did not care.
We have never had this kind of service or treatment from another Cracker Barrel, and we were happy when we found out they were building one here, unfortunately we will never be bringing our money here again. We will drive to SliDell like we always have. Pretty sad when we only live in Madisonville. If you value your money and don't like your night ruined I would stay away from here.
MOODY, ALABAMA -- This past Saturday, June 20 (I think), after running around my sister all day, I came home to get my fiance. I suggested we go eat and he told me to choose. I told him he wouldn't like my choice. At once, he knew I wanted Cracker Barrel. Normally it is not a good experience, but I like their food and their prices so I go expecting poor service. My fiance, always spoiling me, reluctantly agreed to Cracker Barrel. They had a new special: Campfire chicken with veggies or Campfire roast with veggies. I got the chicken and he got the roast. Both meals came out in tin foil (on a plate) like they really were made on a camp grill. Both were excellent!
On top of that, the service we got was perfect! The waiter kept up with our needs without overshadowing us and enjoyed our meals very much. We decided to call the manager over to give to compliment the service and the food (especially the food). The manager was very friendly and conversational but had one very bad piece of news for us: They will only be serving the campfire meals for another 2 weeks! If you live near a Cracker Barrel, I highly recommend trying these dishes before they become a thing of the past.
BARBOURSVILLE, WEST VIRGINIA -- Why did Cracker Barrel stop using pure maple syrup? I have always enjoyed dining at Cracker Barrel whether at home or on vacation. One of the reasons we have sought out this restaurant is because of superior quality food and excellent service. I was extremely disappointed to discover on our last visit that they have changed their "pure maple syrup" to "pure natural syrup" (55% maple and 45% cane).
I feel this is a marketing mistake and it will not go unnoticed. Interestingly when we questioned the waitress and cashier they were not aware of any changes to the syrup or bottle. I don't know if they were playing dumb or if the corporation has not informed its workers of the change.
MILFORD, CONNECTICUT -- I love Cracker Barrel, love the food and store. Also most of the servers are real good and most helpful. But last night was disappointed. Strings had bad taste, fries and string beans very cold. Had the haddock which is always good, and I never had complained. But this has happened in the past, potatoes and veggies cold. Just thought I would bring your attention to it. Because it's a special place and I do like it. Thank you so much. In future if send me any coupons or anything printable. I don't have printer on my computer. Shouldn't be a problem cause you don't send things to print. Get so mad cause so many do and no printer.
JOPLIN, MISSOURI -- Well as a frequent visitor to JOPLIN, MO. Store, they recently went all non-smoking, and I must say I DON'T AGREE with it, and understand that it's a company wide decision.. I'm not a smoker myself but I do believe in individualism and being able to make decisions to one's own body.... Granted that their smoking section is open but it's not fair decision to guests or employees. Then a few days ago I learn the employees can't even smoke no where on the premises nor will they allow them to clock out or take ten minutes to go gather their nerves....
I'm in the customer service field myself like majority of the hard-working people all over the U.S. We all have our own type of "stress ball" relief and only thinking about your guests.... Your employees are what runs your business... you have to give respect to get respect.