Unhappy Diner vs. Graham Elliot

This is so awesome. I love GEB’s initial response back to said diner, and then his lengthy response.

Disgruntled Diner Voices Dissatisfaction on the Internet, Creates "Chicagoans Against Graham Elliot" Facebook Group - Eater" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

GEB could perhaps self-edit a BIT, but he appears to be very much in his right. The diner’s commentary is basically all about portion size and value and $$$, but to launch this after leaving the restaurant and ask for a 50% refund seems like pure extortion.

His next restaurant meal, wherever that might be, will likely be pure expectoration.

Sad to say, the diner seemed totally unprepared for what a very high end restaurant like GEB was offering. If the diner knows how to use yelp, tripadvisor, etc… he could have done some research to see if GEB was the type of restaurant he would like at that price point.


Having just dined there on Friday. It is relatively obvious when you walk in the door and look at the menu what the restaurant is or for that matter isn’t. Loud music, waiters in jeans, everybody having a good time. Don’t get me wrong this is fine dining, the meal was great very interesting flavor combinations with just enough fun poked in. When he calls brioche a Twinkee that sort of explains it. His pairing menu contains not only wine, but beer and cocktails. This is not your grandmother’s dining room. GE was there high fiving people in the dining room. The wine manager was flying around the dining room at a million miles an hour. Lots of energy, excitement with some really, really good food. 10 course tasting menu for $120 plus pairing $60 perfect amount of food.


Loud music is good, if you do not want to talk with fellow diners. [tease.gif]

Who goes to a restaurant to split an entree and then complain when they aren’t full? The no refills on soda is stupid though. I don’t really run into that much because I’m drinking wine/beer/water.

Who drinks a coke with a meal like that?

People who are used to the ginormous amounts of food at places such as Applebees, Olive Garden, Red Lobster, etc.

Lafite-bearing Chinese.

Especially when he makes cool cocktails like summertime/vodka/horseradish paired with sashimi.


The fact that this cheap bastard could find someone to marry him is what really shocks me. What a Jag off. I may just go to GE this week!

“People who are used to the ginormous amounts of food at places such as Applebees, Olive Garden, Red Lobster, etc.”

Tangent: anyone see James Carville going NUTS yesterday about “This is our CULTURE we’re talking about. We don’t DO Applebee’s or Red Lobster down here!”

It’s stupid if they are using a soda gun. Given the movement away from soda gun systems in high end bars, it might make more sense for GEB to just pour out of nibs and charge $3 each time. It also seems silly to complain about an extra $3 on a meal that expensive.

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The guy has a meal that isn’t what he expected and writes a bad review. That should be the end of it. But Dumbass Graham Elliot gets his panties in a bunch and decides to tell the guy off…and you guys cheer him on!!!

The appropriate response should have been a polite “we take all customer feedback seriously. sorry that your meal was not what you expected. We do feel that the prices we charge are appropriate given the quality of the ingredients we use and the care that goes into the preparation.”

Now there is a facebook page and a story on the wire services with Graham Elliot telling a customer to “F off”…well played Graham! Very savvy!

I don’t know this chef from Rachel Ray but does he have a “bad boy” image to uphold? PLUS, to his ACTUAL audience the complainer is gonna come of as a serious rube. Could be GREAT PR for him after all…

No, that’s not quite the story. He had a bad experience and writes a bad review, and then sends GEB an email that suggests more of the same unless he refunds 50% of his dinner bill. Had he simply left the review and not attempted to extort GEB, lest he leave even more nasty reviews, then that would have probably been the end of it.

And he has since pulled his Facebook group, as it had a whopping 6 members and he was getting lit up like a candle on every foodie blog that wrote about it.

Probably not handled in the most gracious maner by either party, but I’ll take GEB’s side in this one I think.

yes, gleefully.

I wonder if this guy has a clue what U-12 dry-packed diver scallops (and I’m assuming that’s what he got) go for on the wholesale market. Given that, per guidelines, his plate should have cost the restaurant no more than $3.00 for the raw ingredients, apparently not.