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“Poor Service!”
1 of 5 bubbles Review of Spice Merchant - CLOSED

Spice Merchant
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Indian, Balti, Eastern European
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Groups, Cheap Eats, Special Occasion Dining, Kids, Child-friendly
Dining options: Dinner, After-hours, Highchairs Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
2 reviews
“Poor Service!”
Reviewed 23 June 2014 via mobile

We visited with family, initially quite excited...30 minutes before we got to order...then another hour before the food arrived...cold. Not a place we would revisit.

Helpful?
Thank Lucinda N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

238 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    100
    70
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Canterbury, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great food, shame about the service.”
Reviewed 23 June 2014

We had high hopes when we arrived at this restaurant on the last day of our long weekend for my stepdad's 40th birthday, and dinner was on him. However, things turned sour very quickly. On arrival, we were taken to a table clearly meant for six when there were seven of us, so four of us had to get very cosy to sit down on one side. A minor issue, yet it set the tone for the rest of the night.
The first issue was the drinks... A simple request, one would think. Apart from my mum's drink (a glass of wine) was completely forgotten about, and after several reminders (precisely 3) to one stroppy member of staff and 30 minutes later she finally received her drink. Then came the ordering of the food, with this same rude waiter. Which all went swimmingly, until he arrived with the hotplates and cutlery etc. He handed a plate to my fourteen year old brother, which I can only assume was forged in the deepest depths of fiery hell by satan himself, and remarked casually, "pass it down". The waiter himself had in fact handled this plate using a thick cloth to cover his hands, and as my brother was not at the time dressed to survive a blizzard due to the blazing sun outside, he then proceeded to try and do as instructed whilst burning himself. When we pointed this out to the waiter he continued to repeat this behaviour with myself, and my parents.
By this stage things were getting ridiculous, we had waited over an hour for food and even satan's warmest crockery was beginning to cool down. When the food finally arrived, of course my grandparent's order was completely wrong, and the food itself was of a luke-warm temperature and beginning to congeal. Yum. My boyfriend insisted his be reheated, but not wanting to wait until tomorrow morning for my meal, I soldiered on.
The food (a chicken achari) was actually really good, the keema naan was lacking meat but by this point we were wasting away and had to eat something, and a second waiter now greeted our table. "How was the achari?" He questioned, greeting me with a beautiful smile that the previous waiter had severely lacked. How I wanted to make him happy, I wanted to lie to him, and tell him it was amazing. I settled with, "It was really nice food but it's a shame it was cold when it arrived and we had to wait over an hour". The hurt on his face was clear, he looked genuinely upset by this result, and yet I had to be honest. This was followed by the other complaints from our table, and it transpired that because one member of our group had ordered a starter, our main and the starter had been cooked and left to wait under the impression that the starter had left the kitchen first and they were waiting for it to be finished.
We were offered free drinks from this point, but alas by this stage we were all incredibly fed up and having a three hour drive the next day we left feeling extremely let down. Perhaps the waiting time and general cock-ups could have been resolved by better communication with us and decent treatment by the first sullen, sulking waiter. If only. Next time we would chose somewhere with less mixed reviews, and maybe nicer staff who don't look like they hate us. I feel incredibly bad for the poor man who clearly wanted to please us and takes pride in his work, and the chefs in the kitchen because the food was really very good. It's a shame that it cost us £120 for an hour and a half's wait with hideous service. Don't bother if you like a friendly service, food that's not cold and a reasonable price.

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank Ellie N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
beer
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“terrible expierence!!!!!”
Reviewed 13 June 2014 via mobile

Me and my partner had prebooked a table for 2..Before we got offered a drink we were asked about a started.We ordered a large bottle of still water..30minutes later we were still waiting for a drink.We asked about our water only to be told it was on its way...we waited a further 10 minutes and we asked again for a drink and the waiter arrived with a glass of tap water.When we asked about our large bottled water after 45minutes he seemed unsure..the other waiter stated our water went to another table!!The service and attitude of the staff was extremley poor..weactually decided not to eat here..we will never return to this place as if they cant get a basic thing right its very poor!!!!!

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank sketchley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vale of GlamorgaAn
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Good food, dreadful service”
Reviewed 8 June 2014

What a shame the service in this restaurant is not of the same quality as the food. We were a family group celebrating a birthday. The food was slow to come out after ordering but the major problem was that the waiter had forgotten to write down one of our orders. We know this because we heard him being told within earshot of our table, that he had written four orders for five people. This was after we complained. The mistake was not spotted initially by the waiting staff. When we pointed it out I said not to bother cooking the order. I would make do with a side order of chips that had already arrived. About 10-15 minutes later as the rest of my party were finishing their meals, my order appeared with some excuse that it needed extra cooking time. I challenged the waiter on his inaccurate excuse and he continued to argue with me for some time before finally conceding that my order had not been given to the kitchen along with the other orders for the table. I did not pay for the missing course but then I didn't eat it either. The rest of my party enjoyed their meals. I didn't get an apology, only an offer to get me another lamb dish in addition for free. I did not want it so did not have it. The whole experience could have been scripted for Fawlty Towers. Take away from here only in future - never again!

  • Visited June 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
3 Thank Bro_morgannwg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
79 reviews
66 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Friday night Indian...”
Reviewed 6 June 2014 via mobile

Ordered a takeaway which was ready in 20-25mins. Quality of food was good, price was normal Indian prices with a 10% discount for takeaways. Staff were pleasant and friendly. Restaurant was fairly busy, based on this experience we will give the restaurant a go next time.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank Ian C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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