Going out to eat is one of life's simple pleasures... that is until something terrible happens to the food you ordered.
I can safely say that I've never really had a truly terrible restaurant experience. I've also never had anything truly untoward happen to my food. And when I've received the wrong thing––it happens now and then––it's never truly been all that big a deal. Others aren't quite so lucky, we're sad to report.
After Redditor Memeofdankness asked the online community, "What is the worst way a restaurant has screwed up your order?" people shared their stories.
All we can say is... yikes. Some of these stories are quite humorous, actually, so you're bound to crack a smile.
"I got a corned beef sandwich..."
Anyone remember Bennigan's (US)? I got a corned beef sandwich with a literal screw in it. They didn't even comp the whole meal. They didn't believe us, thought we put it in there!
"It was annoying."
They brought everyone's meal but mine. After a few minutes I grabbed the servers attention and asked about it and she said she'd check on it. When she came back to check on the table I asked about my food and she said she'd check on it again. Eventually everyone is finished and I never got my food, when the bill came my order was still on the bill. It was annoying.
"I ordered a cheeseless pizza..."
I ordered a cheeseless pizza because I'm lactose intolerant. I like to just order a ton of toppings and extra sauce to make up for the lack of cheese. Domino's decided "no cheese" also meant "no sauce" so I basically got a bread disk with a very meager sprinkling of 2 of the 3 toppings I ordered. Thankfully they sent a new one.
"At this point, I've given up."
I was visiting a medical school campus to interview as a prospective student. It was my first medical school interview, so I was incredibly nervous. We had lunch before the actual interviews began, and we were taken to the school cafeteria and given gift cards to buy food. Pretty typical.
Now, I had a dilemma. I wanted something filling so I wouldn't be distracted by hunger, but I also wanted something that I wasn't going to risk ruining my outfit with; a splash of sauce on my blouse would be devastating. After hemming and hawing for a minute at the cafeteria, I decided the most fitting item on the menu was a grilled cheese sandwich. I go up to the counter where the grill worker is to place my request.
"No, grilled cheese."
"Uh... no, a grilled cheese? Like cheese on bread, toasted on the grill."
I want to clarify: this lady was American. I'd have gotten it if she were foreign, grew up in a place where grilled cheese wasn't a thing, but she was absolutely American, and she gave me the most confused, suspicious look I've seen in my life as I tried to order this sandwich. This sandwich which was, I want to clarify, listed on the menu. She asks if I want white or wheat. I say white. She grabs... a white hamburger bun. Off to a great start. She asks if I want cheddar or pepperjack. I hesitantly say cheddar. She slaps a slice of cheddar on the bun and sticks it on the grill for about 60 seconds. She does not flip it. She hands me my "grilled cheese," which is just a hamburger bun, lightly toasted on the bottom, with wilted, sweaty, unmelted cheddar in the middle.
At this point, I've given up. I'm already full of nerves, and I just want to get this over with. I take my meal to the register, where the lady there looks at the sandwich with utter confusion. "What is that???" I told her it's, supposedly, a grilled cheese. She has a brain aneurysm in front of me. She runs back to the grill, speaks to the workers there for a minute, then returns. I'm given a proper grilled cheese, on the house.
I ended up attending that school. I approached the register lady fall of my first year and asked if she remembered me, the grilled cheese girl. She clapped her hands, then ran to the kitchen saying she NEEDED to re-tell everyone that story.
I still haven't tried ordering a grilled cheese a second time.
"We kept waiting and waiting and waiting..."
After a family wedding we all went for dinner at a nearby restaurant. It wasn't a large wedding, just family and a few close friends. Our party took up three tables.
We kept waiting and waiting and waiting for dessert. Which was odd because they had brought it in from a local bakery (with prior arrangements of course) so all the waiter needed to do was carry it out to the table.
There was a second and larger wedding party at that same restaurant that night, and nobody in that other group questioned it when they received two wedding cakes.
That's right. The restaurant served a wedding cake to the wrong party.
The bridegroom asked the waiter several times and then got up to walk to the kitchen. On his way he passed by the other wedding party where he saw his wedding cake being eaten by strangers.
The restaurant manager at first offered to substitute free desserts, then wrote off our entire party's bill. Nobody created a scene but when the bride stood up in her wedding dress to say there was a problem that ended any debate. We were a small wedding party and there were other diners in the room who were beginning to look up with curiosity at what was happening. So we ate for free, not that anyone was much satisfied.
Our reactions went from confusion to disbelief to anger. Everyone present was mature enough to focus on solutions and didn't want to make a bad moment worse. The only thing we debated was whether to accept the offer of substitute desserts: some were of the opinion that nothing could replace a wedding cake, then the bridegroom decided he was going to get the most expensive dessert on the menu and the bride agreed. So those who had balked at first all followed their lead and we got the most extravagant desserts we could find. Even those who had lost their appetite ordered something. That was our low key way of protesting.
Not a huge screw up, but I once asked if they could do the lasagna vegetarian. The waitress said yes. I ordered it vegetarian. When I received it, it was made with meat. I asked about it. The waitress responded, "Oh yeah, we can't make it vegetarian." Cool.
"Usually I'm super cautious..."
I'm gluten free for medical reasons. Usually I'm super cautious when I go out to eat, but one day I was exhausted so I just called a place, asked if they could make a dish for me. The girl said they could, so I ordered it. I get my food, bite in, and know immediately it's not gluten free. That was the first day of my vacation and I spent the next day going back and forth between sleeping and s******* my brains out, all because that girl at the restaurant lied to me (I talked to a manager who straight up said the girl lied). I definitely called that restaurant and yelled a lot.
"The server altered the receipt..."
The server altered the receipt to a bill paid on a card with a $20 or so cash tip on the table to add a $700 credit card tip. We were regulars at this place (at least once a week: they had the best steaks in a 30 mile radius and a good beer and wine selection) so I figured it was an error running the card, but when we brought it up to the manager the next day they still had the paper receipt and there it was with $700 written on it in different handwriting than the rest (I'm a lefty, so my chickenscratch stands out a bit.)
Kind of a bummer. The steak had been awesome, the other half's meal left no room for complaint, and the service was impeccable (which this place achieved with regularity and repeatability that most fast food places would be jealous of.) I hope whatever issue possessed the server to pull a stunt like that has since been resolved, because nobody should be in a position where they have to pull something so desperate.
"Ordered a mushroom and arugala pizza..."
Ordered a mushroom and arugula pizza that came with a pesto drizzle. They mixed up the pesto bottle with the mint sauce one. Minty pizza.
"The guy brought it to the table..."
I ordered a grilled chicken and provolone cheese sandwich. The guy brought it to the table with no cheese, so I asked if he could bring me a slice of provolone. He came back with a slice laying on his open palm and I had to retrieve it from his palm. (No, I didn't eat the cheese.)
"Well one time..."
Well one time I ordered food, about 1.5 hours pasted so I called the restaraunt. They didn't even start cooking it.
"When they came back..."
We went to a bar for lunch. Because I had a broken arm I ordered chicken fingers so I could eat with one hand. The order came out raw on the inside so I sent them back. When they came back fully cooked they were the same fingers, complete with my bite mark.
"I ordered the crab dip..."
I ordered the crab dip but got spinach and artichoke instead... which I noticed after the waiter dumped the entire bowl in my lap.
"What came out way much too late..."
We asked for one simple addition to our pizza. We asked for pineapple. (I know, I know, shush). What came out way much too late and burnt. It was the pizza we had ordered except for some reason they confused jalepenos for pineapple. I like jalepenos but this pie was soooooo deeply covered in those spicy devils that it was horrible. And not a pineapple to be seen. And it was burnt. And the waitress copped an attitude. And the drinks sucked. I was sad.
"My roommate had a bad reaction..."
My roommate and I went to this one restaurant with some friends. Big mistake going to this place on a Saturday night. We told our server about my roommate's severe seafood allergy. Our server decided to give my roommate clam chowder instead of potato soup. My roommate had a bad reaction, and ran out to get her EpiPen. The server tried to blame us for skipping out on the bill (no one was at the table and no food was eaten). One of our friends and I was with my roommate, while the others were trying to find any manager.
"My meal was comped..."
They served me raw chicken tenders. My meal was comped and luckily, I didn't die.
"So much for date night."
My wife patiently explained her food allergy to the waitress - no chili peppers, chili powder, or anything with capsaicin. She explained to the waitress that the grilled chicken sandwich looked safe on the menu, but she wanted to be sure it didn't have chipoltle aioli sauce or something else not advertised. The waitress assured her it was safe. So she ordered the grilled chicken sandwich and french fries.
One bite of the sandwich and she immediately threw down the sandwich and said, "Oh my God!" Peeling back the bun we saw a huge Anaheim chili on top of the chicken - with one bite taken out of it. As we immediately gathered up our stuff to leave, the waitress assured us it was fine, "It's just an Anaheim chili - they're not too spicy at all!"
We drove home as quick as I could. My wife clutching her epi-pen in her hand, but hoping she wouldn't have to use it. We got home safely and she took a big dose of Benedryl and slept for 10 hours. So much for date night.
"Finally the food comes..."
Had a crippling hangover after a night out with friends. We went to a local diner the next morning and all ordered big greasy meals, coffee, and water. The coffees came right away. No sign of water despite asking multiple times. Our collective dehydration is intensifying.
Finally, the food comes (still no water) and to my horror my bacon and cheese omelette appears to be... green? Apparently the waiter had heard "broccoli" instead of bacon. I'm not opposed to a nice veggie omelette but that was not what my body needed in that moment... and to add salt to the wound we never got water. Ended up going to the bathroom and drinking from the tap out of desperation.
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