We have seen many of our ‘branded’ restaurants behaving in this way which does not augur well for this industry. Such arrogance will certainly take us to nowhere!

Arrogance – the Path to Failure.

Before the Chinese New Year, several colleagues of mine decided to give me a surprise as our year-end and New Year celebration party. They wanted to treat me to a famous restaurant that serves “Fotiaoqiang” (which literally means Buddha jumps over the wall). Wow….obviously I was overjoyed at this idea and I was looking forward to personally taste the “Fotiaoqiang” from a restaurant which is well known not only locally but overseas and it is also an award winning restaurant for Fuzhou cuisine.

In the earlier days, when we were handling inbound tourists this was one of the few well known restaurants catering to busloads of tourists. The “Fotiaoqiang” and Fuzhou cuisines dished out by the chef cum owner was indeed delicious and hence, its reputation spread far and wide. Their cuisines even won numerous gourmet awards at home and abroad. Now that it is taken over by the second generation of the family, it has grown to greater heights.

Well, I’d always wanted to taste this famous cuisine in Malaysia and didn’t have the chance to do so . Presuming that when their business keeps growing, their dishes must definitely progress likewise, hence, I had this confidence that it doesn’t matter any time I go, the standard is always maintained.

My colleagues had been quite enthusiastic about this meal as they wanted to fulfil my wish of tasting this exotic dish. They were willing to fork out an additional 20% paying RM150 per person for the dinner, considering the fact that their monthly salary is not more than RM2K. I’m so touched by their determination to take me to this place which is quite a distance south of Kuala Lumpur.

However, all the enthusiasm ended with disappointment. The “Fotiaoqiang” was so-called acceptable but we could easily get such a standard anywhere else. The moment the lamb was served, I felt that I’d be so sorry to my colleagues if I did not do anything. Therefore, I made a complaint to the supervisor about the tasteless lamb and requested to get the chef to taste it. The supervisor politely replied to us that she will get the chef to taste it. After 5 minutes, the chef came over with the plate of lamb and replied that his cook “should have missed out the salt”. The word “should” sort of irritated me as it meant he did not try at all! When pressed further, the chef admitted he had not tried yet and would do it in the kitchen. A few minutes later, the chef came back and casually answered that his cook had forgotten to add salt when he marinated the lamb chops in the afternoon and offered to re-fry it with black pepper sauce. As a gesture of damage control, the chef offered to serve a complimentary set of fruits which turn out to be a small plate of papaya and watermelon.

Serving us with such a poor explanation and arrangement, without a single apology, no consideration of the customers’ feelings, none of the dishes was palatable, there is absolutely no hint of any professionalism in it. What a shame to be one of the major branded restaurants?

We have seen many of our ‘branded’ restaurants behaving in this way which does not augur well for this industry. Such arrogance will certainly take us to nowhere!

Travelution 2011 March/April Issue

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李桑 作者

在旅游业纵横驰骋1万1000多个日子, 探秘南北极境, 足印遍布7大洲119国! 由衷信仰,“出走” 身体力行,“走出”