Monday, September 13, 2010

Restaurant Review: Wild Ginger, Bellevue

Restaurant Review: Wild Ginger, Bellevue, WA
Cuisine: Asian, Satay Bar
Verdit: D-

I think I'm going to begin writing more about restaurants and places I visit or eat at. Whether they're good or not so rave reviews I'll give you an honest run down on my personal experience. As a friend of mine would describe, there is such thing as the "outspoken consumer", aka me. I enjoy expressing my opinion and hold certain expectations of the service I should receive when I'm out, of course it's all dependent on where I am. Don't get me wrong, I'm pretty easy, smile, have a happy demeanor, be nice and I'm content. But be rude, negative or lacking in customer service and that's a whole different ball game.

My first review is going to be of The Wild Ginger located in Bellevue, Washington at The Shops at the Bravern. My sister is going away to college next week and we wanted to go out to a nice dinner for some quality sister time before she leaves. We were looking forward to a fun evening filled with great conversation, yummy food and a fun atmosphere. So, I thought we'd check out Wild Ginger, a restaurant I'd heard a lot about but had never been. I like the Bravern so it was fitting that we went to their Bellevue location. Little did I know that would be more of a mistake than anything else. Upon arriving to Wild Ginger we were greeted by two hosts who immediately showed us to our table. A table that was uncomfortably located right in the middle of their dining room and several other tables, I requested that we get a booth which thank goodness they accommodated right away. After moving to the booth however, that is where the night went spiraling downhill. We sat at our booth for a good 10-15 minutes completely unacknowledged, it was as if we weren't there. No water, no server to greet us, NOTHING. I had to wave over one of the hosts and ask that we get some water to drink. Thankfully he did bring us water, but then again we waited another 10 minutes for our waiter to finally grace us with his presence and take our order. What I thought so odd was that their dining room was probably only about 50% full and there had to have been 7-10 wait staff walking around aimlessly. Why we were ignored is beyond me? Our waiter came to our table about three times, to take our order, bring us our food and then bring us our bill. Didn't bother to ask how our food was, nothing. I felt as though we were a nuisance to our waiter more than anything. Along with being ignored and invisible, Katia was given a dirty plate to eat off of. Her plate had dried up crusty food on part of the side. So I'm curious if they wash their dishes? Maybe they're in a hurry? Who knows?

Their food is ok, definitely not worth the money they're charging. I don't think I will be going back. The whole experience there was really not pleasing, it's such a bummer because when I made the reservation for dinner with them, I informed them that it was a special dinner celebrating Katia's accomplishment for going onto college. Was that acknowledged or brought up at all? Nope. So instead of conversing about college, life goals and happy memories, our conversation was poisoned with questions like, "When is our food coming?" or "I hope someone comes to refill my water." You get the gist, we spent more time talking about how baffled we were rather than talking about what we had originally wanted to. I really wish I would have selected somewhere else for dinner. It's amazing how poor service can really spoil an evening. In conclusion I think you'll find better service and food at Panda Express, Wild Ginger is overpriced and over hyped. I won't completely fail them, but I can't exactly say the whole experience was average either, it was just very disappointing.

On a more positive note I did get some feedback over Twitter and heard that Wild Ginger's Seattle location is better. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't? I don't know.

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