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Tokyo Sushi Complaint - Scammed?

Review by Raining on 2008-05-05
8366 WOODBINE AVE -- Okay...So my friends and I went to tokyo sushi for all-you-can-eat at woodbine last weekend to celebrate 2 friends' birthday and we had a total of 21 people. We were separated into 7 different rooms and were given a piece of paper and a pen to write down what we wanted to order. After waiting for like one and a half hour...I think there were less than 20 dishes that came if you added all 7 table's dishes together (not including appetizers such as miso soup) and one room totally didn't get any food until we started complaining. 2 Of my friends wanted to order some coke so they asked the person working there how much it would cost because it wasn't on the menu... And the lady said that it would cost $1.50 For a can of coke and you can get refills... After they both finished their can of coke...They asked for a refill and the lady said that the "fountain" was broken and that they can't give us a refill.... And they wouldn't even give us another can of coke..... So after waiting for one and a half hour...We got impatient and started talking to them about it and they wanted $220 for 21 people... Which is totally stupid considering how some people didn't get food so one friend of mine told them that if they're not satisfied with us not paying for $220 then they can go call the police... After saying this the lady there dropped the price down to $150 for 21 people(which I think is unreasonable)so we payed and left....

So what do you think? Were we the ones who were unreasonable?
Comments:28 Replies - Latest reply on 2008-05-11
Posted by madconsumer on 2008-05-05:
was this a buffet? 10 dollars per person is the average price here for this style of food.
Posted by Suusan B. on 2008-05-05:
If you ordered the food then you should have known what you were spending and paid for it. Any post that involves a threat to call the police leads me to believe that we haven't been told the whole story.
Posted by LauraW on 2008-05-05:
Suusan, There was no threat to call the police. The OP says(in a very convoluted sentence) that one of his/her friends who was present said that if the persons managing the restaurant would not be satisfied with less than $220.,then they(the managers) could call the police. He/she also says that some of the group never got their food.
Posted by Suusan B. on 2008-05-05:
The OP states ". . . and one room totally didn't get any food until we started complaining." so that means that everyone eventually got served. I stand by my previous statement that the food that was ordered should have been paid for and as a general rule a restaurant tab is not negotiable. Something just isn't ringing true with this post but I'm sure we'll never hear back from the poster.
Posted by Raining on 2008-05-05:
raaaawr .__. anywayz...we told them that we'd pay for what we ate and we'll just leave but the owner of the store kept making us pay $220 so that friend said that it is ridiculous kus his room onli got one plate of sushi after an hour and a half and the sushi were as thin as a piece of paper...and there were like what? 20 slices? and the thing that got me mad is the coke thing >_< I mean...they could've told us before that the fountain isn't working...but they didn't...and yes...this is all-you-can-eat japanese food and its like $18 per person
Posted by Suusan B. on 2008-05-05:
$18 X 21 = $378

Posted by Raining on 2008-05-05:
dood...do you expect us to pay $18/person even though each onli got served like what? $3 worth of food? and we waited for AN HOUR AND A HALF like come on...
Posted by *Brenda* on 2008-05-05:
I definitely think you were being unreasonable DOOD.
Posted by GothicSmurf on 2008-05-06:
I'm sure you would have been offered a discount had you not demanded it. I think the only scamming was by the OP.
Posted by yoke on 2008-05-06:
gothic, they were given a discount. They bill would should have been $378 plus drinks. So it does sound like the OP and their friends were scamming!
Posted by heaven17 on 2008-05-06:
Yes, you were unreasonable. It's sad that you even have to ask.
You do say it was an all-you-can-eat situation, so it seems as if the power to get your money's worth was completely up to you.
And $220 for 21 people is not outrageous in the least. It should have been more than that considering the tip, which you essentially eliminated by your cheapskate haggling.
So congratulations. There was indeed some scamming going on, but it wasn't the restaurant.
Posted by flipper on 2008-05-06:
I still don't get the math. Twenty-one people. Seven rooms. That's 3 people per room!
Posted by GothicSmurf on 2008-05-06:
Yoke- Thanks for pointing that out. Must've missed that. Prices in restaurants aren't set by the customer, but by the establishment. The OP wanted everything at more than half price (61% off) for taking up 7 tables and a few hours.

Oh yeah, he had 21 people and less than 20 dishes came out?!?!? Sometimes the waitstaff has to go back and get dishes and bring them back out.

I think this whole post is a joke.

Posted by Ben There on 2008-05-06:
I feel sorry for the restaurant.
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-07:
I would like to start off my rebuttal by first making something clear. My friend did not get a 90% average in English at school, and he was not born into an English speaking family. As such, his mannerisms in regards to communication are not on par with what you may be used to - indeed, his use of the slang "dood" and “totally” may have made the wrong impression upon some of you, and that bias has affected your judgment of his review.

I would also like to begin by stating some facts.
-This was a reservation for 30 people. The restaurant managers should have known what to expect, and should have prepared for such. Only 21 people actually made it, due to clashing schedules and the like. There were two cooks, and one waitress (as with many Japanese restaurants, the kitchens are open and the sushi is made in plain sight).
-We were indeed split into 7 tables, as the tables seat four people each; the waitress took our orders separately, with each table writing down what they wanted.
-The first table to get their food was the one directly beside mine. It was a single plate of sushi, and it came approximately 20 minutes after orders were taken. Nothing wrong at this point.
-For the next half an hour, nothing came, with the exception of one can of coke. Ah, the coke can which the OP spoke of! Nothing wrong with charging more for extra cans of coke… if you weren’t told that refills would be free, and when it actually came to refilling, they informed you that their fountain machine was broken! Unfortunately, giving you another can of coke isn’t refilling, so refills are voided.
-When food finally did come, it was delivered to the wrong tables, such that the people who ordered them didn’t receive their food; this effectively left several tables without any food. Food count: 3 large plates of sushi (cucumber rolls at that; nothing expensive in terms of raw materials), a medium plate of raw salmon.
-From this point on, we received no food. At an hour and a half, the two hosts of the party decided that they had had enough. Everyone was asked if they were willing to pay for the costs of the food that we had been served, so that we can negotiate a cancellation of the rest of the orders and leave. We were willing to pay, as we had not eaten a lot and assumed that the cost wouldn’t be high.
-The manager flat out disagreed, and insisted on finishing what they started. Surprised, we took a look at our order sheets. Many of the food items had been crossed out, and yet no more than four plates of food (disregarding the plates of wasabi and radishes) had reached us. As it turns out (this is based on admittance from the waitress), the food had been served… but to the wrong tables. There were two other groups of customers, and the food had been distributed to them, but taken off of our order list. The waitress wanted us to rewrite what we had ordered, and they would remake the orders.
-After waiting for so long, we wished to leave. Be honest with yourself for a moment. If you waited one hour and forty five minutes, and the bulk of your food hadn’t even arrived, would you still want to eat there?
-The manager finally agreed to letting us pay for our food and leave. The opening price was $300. Divide that into twenty one people, and it approximates 14 dollars per person, down from 18 dollars. This is unreasonable. Assuming each large plate fit 30 pieces of sushi, and there were 3 large plates, that’s 90 pieces of sushi averaged into 21 people; or, 4.3 pieces per person. However, due to the organization of the tables, some people did not eat anything while others did. To pay 14 dollars and not have eaten is unreasonable.
-The price was brought to $200 dollars. This is still approximately 10 dollars per person, with an average 4.3 pieces per person. Let’s say we add the salmon, of which there was a medium plate of 12 pieces, amounting to 4.9 pieces per person, or 2 dollars per piece.
-This is the point wherein my friend stated that if the restaurant wished to, they could bring in the police to deal with the matter, and that they could answer to the police why there were 21 dissatisfied customers. Said friend does not understand that by law, the police will protect the business owners first, and that if police actually were brought in, we would have to make our case in court or pay the fines. However, the restaurant manager lowered the price to $150, or $7/person. The host and I conferred, and agreed that, despite several people not having eaten at all, we were desperate to leave and dine elsewhere. We paid the $150, and left.

In conclusion, there were not 21 plates, there were 4. The raw cost of materials included 90 cucumber rolls, 12 pieces of raw salmon, and 1 can of coke. We were waiting for our food for an hour forty five minutes, not lounging around for an hour and forty five minutes enjoying our food and being a pain in the rear to the restaurant. There were a total of two other groups eating there, so it was not busy in the restaurant. There was a week’s notice to prepare for the arrival of 30 people, and only 21 arrived. The waitress delivered the food to the wrong tables, some of which weren’t even part of our group.

This is not how you manage a restaurant. From your point of view, you may be thinking that a “kid” doesn’t fully understand the managerial aspects of a restaurant. However, we are seventeen. We are not troublemakers. The majority of us are 80+ average students. Our two birthday girls are leaders among students. And my father personally manages and owns three successful Szechuanese restaurants. Understand that we did not set out with the intention of scamming a restaurant, we set out to celebrate the 17th birthdays of two much liked students. Following the maligned events at Tokyo Sushi, we went and ate at the “V.I.P. Vietnamese Restaurant” in First Markham Place, satisfied by their service, great food, and, after the troubles we faced earlier, happily and generously tipped our waiters for a job well done.
Posted by yoke on 2008-05-08:
billium, 21 17 year olds wanting everything for nothing. How many adults were with you?
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-08:
Did you read the whole of my comment? We wanted what we ordered; as we did not get what we ordered, we opted to leave. Let's say you went to McDonald's and ordered a happy meal, and the meal came with just the hamburger; no fries, no coke, no happy. And for the next hour and forty minutes you sat there and waited for them to bring out the rest. Would you still consider that fair?
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-08:
Did you read the whole of my comment? We wanted what we ordered; as we did not get what we ordered, we opted to leave. Let's say you went to McDonald's and ordered a happy meal, and the meal came with just the hamburger; no fries, no coke, no happy. And for the next hour and forty minutes you sat there and waited for them to bring out the rest. Would you still consider that fair?
Posted by yoke on 2008-05-09:
yes I read the whole comment. How many adults were with you?
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-09:
Are you implicating that the number of adults with or without us would affect your judgment of the situation?
Posted by yoke on 2008-05-09:
billium, yes. It now sounds as if there were 21 teens that decided they did not want to pay for the bill and started to complain. I am suprised that the resturant allowed a bunch of teens in unaccompanied by an adult.
Posted by cherpep on 2008-05-09:
In my opinion, the folks that never received food should not pay for anything. The folks that did receive food should pay for what they were served. If this was an all-you-can-eat joint, than those people should pay full price. Whether or not adults were in attendance does not matter, as long as everyone remained respectful.
Posted by hello dolly on 2008-05-09:
I would say from the well written response these were well behaved young adults who were probably more respectful than many "adults" would have been in teh same circumstances. My hat is off to you and your group Billium for acting in a responsible manner. Many of todays youth would have mouthed off and felt they had a right to do it. I would welcome your group to my restraunt ANYTIME.
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-10:
yoke - Let us suppose that I took out the "21 seventeen year olds section", and you assumed we were adults. What would your response be?

As I have clearly indicated in my first response, what we were served were 3 plates of sushi and 1 plate of salmon - all for 21 people. 3 plates of sushi and 1 plate of salmon will not feed 21 people and keep them at least satiated, regardless of whether we are seventeen years old or forty.

As I have also indicated in my first response, reservations were made for 30 people a week prior - and yes, we were asked for our ages. As a restaurant manager, if you were expecting 30 people, you should have enough labour on hand to handle them. It's not as if we walked into the restaurant and caught them off guard, they KNEW that there would be a large amount of people coming, and still they failed to serve us.

If age is what you judge the situation by, then I am inclined to think that you are predisposed, and that without perhaps thinking through the situation, you would judge us as being at fault - simply because we are not "adults". And yet, I've seen adults do worse; how about getting proper service and on time food delivery, and then simply walking out on the bill?

It sounds as if you didn't read or fully understand my first post.

cherpep - All you can eat is what it was, but all that we ordered wasn't served. And it wasn't that we ordered an outrageous amount of food, it was that we received only three plates of sushi and one plate of raw salmon, after an hour and fortyish minutes of waiting. We wanted to leave at this point to eat elsewhere, and tried to get a price for what we ate to leave. Should we really have paid full price in this scenario?

hello dolly - Thank you. You raised a strong point though, and that's that many teenagers would have started cussing, and that may explain yoke's bias towards my friends and I.
Posted by yoke on 2008-05-11:
billi, since there were no adults with you and you were having a problem I would have contacted one of the parents and asked that they come down since the resturant was not giving you the food ordered. We only have one side to this story so we really don't know what really happened, only your version. There are always 3 versions to a story. Yours, theirs and the truth.
Posted by jktshff1 on 2008-05-11:
Billium, very good reply and explanation.
It is good to see young adults taking care of their own problems and apparently did a better job than some adults I know.
However, at the next gathering, I would request that one of the parents accompany your group, just to be on the safe side.
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-11:
yoke - And as this is the internet, you're entirely correct in assuming that I'm distorting everything I say. But, I doubt anything I say or do on this website will have any real life implications. As many people seem to post on this website seeking advice for their situations, it would make sense to me that subsequent advice be given with the assumption that they are telling the truth; no harm comes out of assuming they're correct, because this is the internet. If someone does come online and dispute their story, that's when I feel it would make sense to start questioning who's telling the truth.

I can see that from an outsider's perspective that what Raining has written seems sketchy and suspicious, however, so there is some reason to doubt what was said.

Protection laws in Ontario, Canada, do protect the business owners first; if they had called the police as my friend suggested them to, we probably would've been forced to pay first, and dispute it in court later. They didn't call the police, which, I think, means that either they felt that should we have taken it to court, they didn't have any actual defense, or that they weren't aware of such a law existing/didn't want to deal with the hassle of getting the police involved.

In short, thanks for the advice on how to handle the situation in the future; may I suggest that you try not to sound accusatory, if that was not your intention? I think it's possible to be objective and helpful at the same time.
Posted by Billium on 2008-05-11:
Oh and also, jkshff1 - it was a party, so having a parent around would have been awkward, both for the parent and us :P I don't think every time we reserve spots at a restaurant, we'll run into this same issue - this is honestly the first time I've run into such unprofessionalism. But involving the parents if we run into this kind of problem seems to be the general suggestion, so we'll do that if things like this happen again. Thanks for the suggestion.

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