Sunday, 20 July 2008

No Bookings

Why is it once you've found someplace good to eat and it becomes popular, they try to suck the goodness out of it?

It's like celebrities, the popularity goes to their head, and they seem to think they are popular just because they exist, not popular because of particular things about them.

For instance, Mr Coffee and I have tried various places which may have not had the greatest ambience, but they did one dish fairly well and they had a good cheap lunchtime special. They let you choose from a number of their dishes, plus one of their sweet flavoured teas. So it got popular around lunchtime, and it's one high quality Chinese dish wasn't bad either!

Then they decided to cook worse and use lower quality food.

Then the more popular dishes on their lunchtime special menu started disappearing or you had to pay "extra" to get them - for instance, the duck.

Then you couldn't get some of the nicer teas.

The final straw was when they wouldn't serve any of the flavoured sweet teas at all - all you could get was the plain regular Chinese tea - or what Mr Coffee calls "brown dishwater"

We walked out without bothering to order.

At another restaurant, their very nice handmade noodles were really good value at $6 a bowl - and some of their other dishes weren't bad either. Despite the fact the place looked crummy and their service wasn't really good. Then it crept up to $7, then $8, then $9 ....

I have just recently enjoyed eating at a nice Thai restaurant. It's really popular - people queue in the street to get in. The food is pretty good and I have preferred it over another Thai restaurant mainly becuase it's a little cheaper and you can actually make bookings.

The other Thai restaurant, while the food is delicious, doesn't allow bookings and is a tad more expensive.

Then I rang the first Thai place just now and asked to book, a week in advance. "No weekend lunchtime bookings!" they cried. This was new to me, only a couple of months back I'd booked a weekend lunchtime.

I hope this one doesn't start changing all its ways just because it's popular. Please no.

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