The etiquette of how to complain about restaurant service

Wine Educator / Wine Editor of Food24 and ex-restaurateur, Cathy Marston says using social media to complain about service, especially at a restaurant should be your last resort.

Marston has written an article sharing her most trusted methods to lodge a complaint after having a meal at a restaurant.

She says one of the downfalls of social media is that it gives people a platform to give an opinion without always being aware of the impact the opinion will have on the business.

Keep calm

Tip number one is to keep calm. If you're calm, that's the first thing that will help you be taken seriously.

Cathy Marston, Ex-restaurateur and Wine Educator / Wine Editor of Food24

Tell someone immediately The second tip Marston shares is to tell someone immediately about your experience. She explains that if you leave your complaint until the bill comes, the phrase ‘freeloaders’ will begin to float into view.

Explain clearly what you want the restaurant to do Marston says you need communicate clearly what you would like the restaurant to do to improve their service and meet your expectations.

Be realistic about your demands If you have a fly in your glass of wine, an appropriate response is an apology and a fresh glass of wine says Marston. She goes on to say that it’s not a fresh bottle of wine for the whole table. Everytime you do that, you screw it up for genuine complainants adds Marston.

Go to the top and follow-through if necessary She says the senior manager won't always be available and then the next best option is to follow up with the complaint the next day.

Listen to the full interview here:


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