Powerhouse Restaurant Brewery Complaint - Attention: Powerhouse Restaurant and Brewery No Longer Needs Customers

Review by NMarsh on 2006-12-09
PUYALLUP, WASHINGTON -- After being long-time customers of the Powerhouse restaurant in Puyallup, that suddenly came to a halt on December 8th 2006, when my wife and I were kicked to the curb, by some of the rudest managerial behavior we have ever seen in our personal combined 30-years of restaurant business experience or in any type of business as far as that goes.

Picture our scenario:
We come into the restaurant, and as what typically happens in "normal" restaurant situations, a nice kid comes up and tells us “it will be a couple of minutes,” which was fine, they were full...it's Friday night...we understand. He put our name on the waiting list, and left. Shortly after that, 4 other customers walk into the restaurant and a waitress greets them and immediately ushers them to a seat. My wife asks her "what's going on?" Why do they get seated before us?" She then begins to tell us in a "don't you stupid idiots get it?" fashion that “it is their policy to seat 4-tops before 2-tops if they’re available first, even if the 2-top was waiting first. So my wife asked to see the Manager (to see if that was really their asinine policy). In our case it really wouldn't have mattered about the specifics of who was a 2-top or a 4-top, we wouldn't have sat in one of their 2-top tables anyway, (they are those really tiny booths, which I hate). Next here comes the manager, which is when the real magic happened. This so-called manager who approached us like some kind of WWF wrestler or better yet, strip-club bouncer, with his arms in the air and with a very boisterous, condescending, aggressive tone asking "So, what's the problem, (as he looked at my wife) Ma'am?" we proceeded to tell him how we thought it was a little unfair to seat the other table first, since we were there first. He basically stopped us in mid-conversation and told us he was too busy to bother with this, and we need to deal with it or leave. "Have a good night." and walked away as we sat there with our jaws on the floor.

What would you folks do? Please email a reply to this ad so I can gather your responses and send them to the restaurant owner, that way he can see just how much his management staff is concerned about his investment. Even though we might have not spent as much as a 4-top, however, our money is still money and if this restaurant is anything like some of the restaurants I’ve ran in the past, then they probably do have a payroll to meet, food cost to cover, utilities to pay. The last time I knew, it was the customer who met those needs.

You know what? This place does have a cool little atmosphere going on, but the food and sports pub style menu is mediocre at best, but if they think they can piss away customers like that, then that is their choice; my money comes hard-earned and there are just too may restaurants out there who will appreciate it. My wife and I don't necessarily feel we need to bring an entourage with us to get better seating privileges. Boy! What is happening with restaurants now days? Wow! Business in Down-town Puyallup must be totally wonderful, to not have to worry about something as trivial as "customer service."

Our hope is that this business and others like them do not deserve your business either; maybe with the voices of many these dipsticks will get a clue of who the customer is. Hello.... your paycheck!!!

Nick and Helena

Puyallup, WA
Comments:7 Replies - Latest reply on 2006-12-09
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-12-09:
Sounds like you got treated badly. I can't find a web page for the place. Go to the local library and you might be able to find out who actually owns the place. Ask a librarian for assistance. Then contact the owner. I had a similar problem with a local restaurant a few years ago. When I contacted the owner he was truly shocked by what happened to me. The manager was fired and I was given a chit signed by the owner allowing me and a guest free meals for one year.
Posted by Bababooey on 2006-12-09:
Sounds like that Seinfeld episode where Jerry, Elaine, and George were kept waiting for a seat at the Chinese Restaurant!
Posted by Nohandle on 2006-12-09:
Most restaurants have very limited seating for one or two individuals. You more or less stated even if a table for two had been available you basically preferred a larger, more comfortable table...don't blame you there. Unfortunately, most restaurants don't work that way as far as seating goes.

If the next requested table was for six the restaurant wouldn't have given you preference when they could have served six instead of two. They will grab a table for two, combine it with a table for four and presto table ready for six. Forget the individuals who have waited patiently to be seated. You simply would have been dropped further down the bumping order.

I really think your primary complaint is the way you were treated by management, being a long-time customer. Of course they were busy, Christmas season, parties, Friday night etc. Well, the busy holiday season won't last forever and those who keep a favorite restaurant in business the rest of the year will find somewhere else to frequent in the future. Perhaps restaurants might keep this in mind when giving preference many times to seldom diners over the regular customers.
Posted by NMarsh on 2006-12-09:
Thanks Nohandle, this is my first time to my3cents.com which I feel I'll get a lot or use out of. Your right about the seating arrangement protocol that most restaurants use, which may not have been so bad just as long a they explain to the parties who've been on the list before the table they're seating. (e.g., we have a table that can accommodate this larger party ready we would like to seat them first--our crew is working on your table which will just be a couple more minutes, is that alright?). Like I said we were in the business, and it would have actually been alright, but the attitude of this waitress by the way she responded to us was just inappropriate which she probably learned was okay because the very same method is practiced and endorsed by the management. Busy, Holiday season, whatever, treat your customers like the jewels they are.
Posted by NMarsh on 2006-12-09:
Thanks PassingBy:
I actually called the restaurant back a little later and asked a series of questions to the person I had on the line which one of them was "who is the owner?" they told me who it was and that he usually spends most of his time at a sister restaurant in Tacoma, WA (Engine House no. 9). Since they have an email address on there website I sent them a message to pass along to the owner about our experience. Let's see what he does with that. Thanks again for your advice. Here is a web-site I found for the Powerhouse http://www.powerhousebrewpub.com/main.html
Posted by Shakra on 2006-12-09:
We have a place in my town that looks quite similar to that restaurant. It's a brewery also. Thank goodness we were never treated like that. Best of luck to you.
Posted by Anonymous on 2006-12-09:
I'd say it's much ado about nothing. Vote with your feet, if you're not happy how a place treats you, don't go back. But don't lose sleep over it either.

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