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Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Restaurant Warning: Stay Away

Dissed in France
by Marseille Maitre

The following is a letter I wrote to Jeanne Laffitte regarding my encounter at her restaurant Les Arcenaulx, and arts, literary, and dining complex, at 25 cours Estiennes d'Orves. This is the FIRST time I've been dissed by an onery Frenchman for simply being American. This is also the first time I've refrained in giving a restaurant any credit via the 'star' system. Les Arcenault insteads gets five Freedom Fries.

Subject: Poor Service

PHILADELPHIA | 13 September 2011

Dear Ms Laffitte,

I had an unfortunate, disappointing experience at your restaurant on 7 September, thanks to your maitre d'hotel, a thin, wiry individual with white hair, a sharp tongue, and a short temper. The incident was aggravated in that my partner was also needlessly made to suffer.

At first, all went well, and as would be expected since Aux Arcenaulx came highly recommended from French friends here in Philadelphia. We had also hoped to visit your wonderful bookshop. But we were too late that day for that, and we were leaving Marseille in the morning.

Les Arcenault: Don't Go!
At the restaurant, we were seated promptly and then waited, waited -- and waited. We noticed that others were being served, in a well-paced manner. Finally, more than thirty minutes later, catching the eye of your maitre d'hotel, I asked in French whether he was READY to take our order.

'Boof,' he puffed, pointing inside to the busy inside dining room. 'Don't you see we are busy, Monsieur,' he barked.

He turned to walk away, but I grabbed his attention. 'Well,' I said, 'we're ready to order, and we'd like to. Now.'

'Alors,' he responded, 'I am NEVER ready.'

At this, we walked out.

I still hope to visit the your bookshop when I return in Marseille in January. As for the restaurant, I think I'll skip that 'pleasure.'

Yours sincerely,                           

Richard CARRENO,
News Editor
Writers Clearinghouse