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“Don't Wait!”
Review of Artisan's Grill - CLOSED

Artisan's Grill
Price range: US$8 - US$29
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine, Child-friendly
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff
Harrisonburg, Virginia
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Don't Wait!”
Reviewed 6 July 2014

First, let me state that I hate writing negative reviews. I always try to find positive elements, to provide some balance to the negative. In the visit to Artisan's Grill, we could find none.

When we arrived, we had to wait, even though tables were available. Then, a couple behind us in line was seated, even though there was just two of us, and we were obviously at the front.

That was the first sign that the restaurant was disorganized. As we patiently waited by the grill, the kitchen staff argued about how the food was prepared. One suggested that the food was not cooked correctly, and another replied "it will have to do."

After waiting for several minutes, we were finally escorted to our table, then re-seated at a larger table by the front window.

Twenty minutes went by, and there was still no sign of our waitress. After flagging down the hostess, the waitress finally appeared, and took our drink orders. While were waiting for our soft drinks, another staff member very abruptly and ungraciously told us that they needed us to move to yet another table.

We had now been in the restaurant over a half hour, and nobody seemed the least bit interested in taking our food order.

After waiting at the third table for some time, the two soft drinks finally arrived.

It is worth noting that the staff does not scan the room for diners trying to make eye contact. In fact, they seem to avoid making eye contact altogether, Unless one practically gets out of their chair, and flags them down, plan on doing a lot of waiting.

While wondering when our oblivious waitress would arrive to take our food order, another family was seated at the large table where we had just been seated. As they were being held captive for fifteen minutes, another staff member approached them, not to provide water or drinks or take an order, but to demand that they move to another table.

When placing our food order, the waitress did not know the ingredients of the offerings, nor did she ever say "Let me check on that." In fact, we had to repeat the order several times, as she kept getting confused by instructions like "hold the cheese and mayo.".

We waited for another hour, for our simple order of two sandwiches to appear, to no avail. During this time, a table of six that was departing advised the our waitress that she had brought them someone else's check for two. These customers had luckily caught the server's mistake. However, if they had paid it, presumably the table for two would have gotten the bill for the table of six. While this seem comical now, it would have been a pain sorting out, when the table for two was ready to leave, especially given the inefficient execution by all staff.

At no time did the staff ever say: "Sorry it is taking so long for your order to come out. May I get you something (like dinner rolls, appetizer, salad, etc.) while you wait?"

When we asked if they would check on our order, we watched the staff for the next ten minutes, meander around the dining room. At no time did anyone check on our order. When we flagged them down again, they replied that "It would be right up," which is completely ridiculous, as nobody had checked with the kitchen. An HOUR after the order for two sandwiches was placed, we still had no food. Again (fifteen minutes later!) they promised "it would be right up," which was not based on reality, but just to placate us.

In short, it was as if the management took COMPLETELY INEXPERIENCED staff (at all levels) gave them the keys to the restaurant and then went away for the weekend. At best, the staff was trained by other staff who did not know what they were doing and did not care.

We fully expect that a reply from the merchant will be "It was the July 4th weekend. We were very busy."

The root of our dissatisfaction is that they were disorganized, unprofessional, discourteous, and incapable of working under the slightest amount of pressure. The basic customer skills of checking in with your patrons, scanning the room, providing an appetizer to offset the long wait - we were there to eat, not guess as to how long it would take to get service - cannot be excused by the July 4th weekend. In fact, there were three empty tables, as we waited.

The only person who appeared to be working was the boy cleaning tables, wiping them down with the same unsanitary rag he used on the previous table, just spreading the germs and bacteria around.

After promises that our food "would be right up" spanning over a half hour, it was abundantly clear that our order was never placed at all..

We got up and walked out (AT 2PM - long after the lunch hour), and not one person even noticed!

The solution for better service would be to fire the entire staff, and bring in more professional personnel at all levels. The fact that the staff was rude, inefficient, unprofessional and completely unapologetic speaks volumes about the standards and example management has set.

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
4 Thank Dean S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Eileen P, General Manager at Artisan's Grill, responded to this review, 7 July 2014
We apologize for your unsatisfactory experience at the Artisan's Grill. We strive to make each and every guest happy that walks through our door, I again apologize this did not happen with you. We were very short staffed in the front of the house and the back of the house on Saturday, with it being the holiday weekend, it was very busy. When you came in, we sat you at a table in the middle of the upstairs dining room, you then moved yourselves to our biggest table in the restaurant, which is a ten top by the windows, without even asking if this would be okay. It was very busy and every other table in the restaurant was full, when we brought a large party up to sit at the table you decided to move yourself to, you were asked to move to a smaller table, like the one you had originally been sat at. I apologize for this again. We did check on your order several times after you had asked when your lunch would be ready, the cooks had stated that they had a line of tickets in front of yours and it would be a few more minutes. Your food did come up about five minutes after you walked out, and yes we did notice you had walked out. Again I apologize for your experience and will take into consideration your negative comments about properly training our entire staff.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

358 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
1 review
“Local favorite...fresh homemade food”
Reviewed 4 July 2014

Very busy 4th of July prime time..handled well by the staff . Excellent homemade food, fresh salads and live music ! Couldn't have asked for more !

  • Visited July 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank sks126
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Walnutport, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
31 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2014

Very good food. You'd like to sit in the upstairs, but the atmosphere anywhere in this restaurant isn't great. Could use some updates. Prices are reasonable, and they have a wine and beer list.

Visited June 2014
Thank Katheethecamper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gainesville, Virginia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Nice Environemnt and Food”
Reviewed 1 July 2014

Food was very good and the music made the environment that much better! Could have sat their all night listening to the music and drinking wine.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Mark H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Richmond, Virginia
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Good service, bland food”
Reviewed 29 June 2014

This place was recommended by our Innkeeper on a weekend getaway. I really wish we had gone somewhere else. The atmosphere is nice and the service is good, but that doesn't make up for the completely bland food. I had a crab cake with sauteed squash and zucchini and red potatoes. I could see seasoning on the food, but couldn't taste anything. The veggies and potatoes were cooked well (not mushy or underdone), but just lacked flavor. The crab cake was honestly disappointing. It seemed like someone formed a patty out of under-seasoned shredded crab salad (heavy on the celery) and lightly fried it. Not a lump of crab meat to be found. Overall, food was cooked well and served at a good temperature, but just needed better seasoning.

Visited June 2014
Thank morrisne03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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