Regardless of the veracity of overboard‘s account — and I should inject here that I didn’t verify the story — I think this mini-review of Sfizi Deli Cafe in Fairfax points out a very real fear for restaurateurs in the digital age: A burned diner is their worst enemy.
Get this: Overboard not only posted a review here at City Paper but also one on Sfizi’s page at washingtonpost.com. The very same review in fact. This is a diner on the warpath. Y&H is very sympathetic to burned diners, but I’d like to interject one question to overboard: Did you contact the managers and give them a chance to make good before slapping Sfizi upside the head on a couple of Web sites? If so, good for you.
I’m not saying that contacting management is a prerequisite for posting a review online, but I am saying that your gripe would have more impact if you actually tried to talk to the manager about this — and the manager showed no interest in making you happy and turning you into a life-long customer. That, to me, says so much more about a restaurant.
Good restaurant owners, after all, are trying to create a relationship with you, not just provide you a dinner
Here is overboard’s take on the situation at Sfizi:
This restaurant was recommended by a friend. The ambiance wasn’t too bad. Reviews are overrated. I had linguini with clams (very few,bland,dry and microscopic) mom lobster ravioli (lobster nonexistent). I was not given a menu and had to try to read the chalkboard in the distance-and was never given a wine list. The waiter recommended a very nice chianti which he said three times was 19.95. When the bill came the bill included water (we didnt get) and a $5 corkage fee – which no one told us about. Tell me price up front-dont tack on $5 on the total. If its 19.95 – that should be on the bill – if the corkage is there – tell me its $24.95 and charge me that. Servers are good. Owner is arrogant. Definitely better Italian out there-this aint it.