What Child-Friendly Restaurants Shouldn’t Do

greek corner chelseaSince I moved to NYC, I’ve had some of the best dining experiences of my life.  Not only is the food in NYC some of the best in the world, but the service is usually stunning.  Waiters typically have a lot of patience and treat patrons really well, at least in my experience.  Often they are actors or writers, or have another profession, who have zest for life and love serving food.  I’ve also had plenty of great family-friendly dining experiences – fantastic ones.  That’s why when I have a bad one, I’m shocked and disappointed.

This past weekend, we had one of those rotten experiences at a restaurant called the Greek Corner in Chelsea.  I feel compelled to write about the experience in hopes that you think twice about going there.  I would not be writing this post had anyone at the restaurant reached out to me upon leaving to improve the situation or offer their regrets.

Okay, I was a little mad on Saturday.  I’ve simmered down, but I still see a need to write this post.

Here is a list of some of the ways you should not be treated by any NYC restaurant, particularly when eating with kids, based on Saturday’s experience:

– When your child is yelled at by a fellow patron for accidentally falling off his seat (he was tired and he did need to eat so his behavior wasn’t his best, but he’s only 6!), and the waitress sees the incident, there should be some kind of reaction, particularly when the incident occurs twice.  Rather than yell at my son and tell him to say excuse me, perhaps the patron should have addressed his opinion to me, the other adult in the situation.

– When you tell the waitress that your child is hungry, the food should come quickly.  It should not take an ungodly amount of time.  And if you order chocolate milk, it should come before the food, not after.

– If your child is starving and fussy, there is no reason your waitress should not want to bring an extra plate.  Rather than announcing quite rudely that you already have plates on your table and that she is busy, she should bring one immediately.  Even after you explain that your child will not eat on a plate that is touching other food, she should not blks at you.  Not appreciated.

– The fact that a NYC restaurant has a sharing fee does not surprise me. What does surprise me is that this information is in very small print on a menu in a diner.  There is no reason a diner should have a sharing fee for french toast!  The waitress should not announce his fact after you ask for an extra plate, as if she were seeking revenge on you for making her job harder.

– When the waitress upsets you to such a degree that you no longer have an appetite to eat the food that you now have to pay for, but you can’t get up and leave out of fear or not only further humiliation, but due to the fact that your child has to eat before falling apart, you sit at the table about to burst into tears, this is a bad thing.

– When you finally get up to leave and take your bill to the cashier, after the waitress mumbles a lame apology and tells you she is knocking $5 off the bill for her rudeness, and no one up front apologizes for anything, this is also bad.

Finally, if a fellow patron has to actually get up and run after you when you make your way out of the diner, and ask if you are from New York to see why you let yourself get treated like that by a waitress?  And you are a New Yorker.  That is also not cool.

Do I recommend the Greek Corner?  Absolutely not.




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  1. Ugh. Nothing worse than that kind of nonsense. I really hate restaurants that can’t get kids food out asap – once went to place that actually brought my daughter’s food out 15 minutes after everyone else’s. It’s not around anymore so I can’t complain about it. But you’re doing the right thing spreading the word about this place!

  2. we have some stories like that from our manhattan days, too. one of the nicest things about moving to suburbia (which in general i think manhattan outshines in most areas) was how easier it was to take kids out to eat. i remember thinking crayons? i’ve never heard of these! and there is that cool place with the etch-a-sketches too. and i love the place in new rochelle that gives kids their own pizza dough b4 the food comes.

    anyway, sorry it happened to you and your son… here’s to better dining experiences in the future!

  3. Wow, that place sounds absolutely horrid. I will definitely put it on my list to avoid! Sorry about this awful experience. I hope they see this review, and it negatively impacts their sales.

  4. that surely is one place to avoid like the plague! So sorry you and your family had to go through that appalling dining experience. Those people are monsters! I cannot believe how badly your family was treated. You should write a scathing letter to the owners and make sure no other family ever goes through the same experience. Perhaps the NY Times dining editor could help spread the word… there’s also the Daily News… just a thought. ((hugs))

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