UPDATE 4/22/2017: Public records reveal Farmer’s Table Express cited for food violations.
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) –BocaNewsNow.com reported back in March about the reservation problem at Farmer’s Table — a Boca Raton restaurant that seemingly enjoys making folks with reservations wait an hour before being seated. Located on the first floor of the Wyndham, the restaurant is the non-eyesore part of a motel that surprisingly still exists.
We reported how time after time, reservations booked on Open Table are not honored. An 8pm reservation turns into 9pm. A 7:30p reservation turns into 8:25p. Folks emailed us and posted on Open Table that our observation was right on — and that the restaurant has a customer service problem.
We just spoke with General Manager Leslie Hill. With an upcoming reservation scheduled, we asked what could be done to make sure the reservation is actually honored. Could we call ahead to get on “the checked-in list?” Could we have the reservation noted that we’d like it to be honored? Could she, as the General Manager, just tell her underlings to make sure people are seated when they expect to be seated?
The answer: a very arrogant “we do our best but it’s just not always possible to adhere to reservations.”
Hill is representative of the problem at Farmer’s Table… a problem that, mark our words… will result in the restaurant’s failure within 24 months. Anyone who has lived in Boca for any period of time knows that while food quality is important, customer service is possibly the most important element when folks here decide where to dine. On a Saturday night in Boca, there are often two groups of diners… the newly wed and the nearly dead. The newly wed aren’t going to put up with waiting and waiting and waiting, and the nearly dead are shuffled through quickly because restaurants don’t want to appear, well, old.
Irritate folks who aren’t in their 80s and you end up with a restaurant full of people in their 80s.
A quick check of Facebook reveals that General Manager Leslie Hill, herself, has a history that doesn’t exactly exude fine dining. You’ll note she was GM of Seasons 52 which we slammed for horrendous customer service back in October.
From the Farmer’s Table Facebook Page:
“(Hill) relocated to Lahaina, Hawaii where she worked for Bubba Gump Shrimp Co, quickly moved up to GM after a few years, winning the “Rookie GM of the Year” award. Later, Leslie relocated to Florida where she worked for BJ’s Brew House, and most recently General Manager at Seasons 52. Her motto: ‘It’s all about people working with you, not for you.”
How about a motto of “customers first?”
Restaurant success in Boca is very simple. Customers are more important than anything else. If you don’t respect your customers, someone else will. We’ll see how long Farmer’s Table survives with its “too cool for school” mentality. There’s only so much popularity that a restaurant in a Wyndham can hold on to. If they’re not careful, they too will become “that restaurant that used to be in that motel,”… just like “Always Open Denny’s” and “Howard Johnson’s.”
Been to either lately?