I am glad the food was great. Honestly, a simple apology would have sufficed. I’m not a big drinker and I was not with big drinkers (our party of four finished two carafes of 44 dollar sake) so an alcohol comp wasn’t even necessary. In fact, I was driving back to Orange County so I very well may have turned it down.
I understand that with a restaurant of that size, a table can’t be forced out. I just wanted an opinion on how to handle situations like these. Thanks for your input.
I contacted my friend who works at n/naka to see if I could get things straightened out for you and was told that there was indeed a party that night at 9:00 that was inconvenienced for nearly an hour, and was not seated until close to 10, at which time the party was comped (what exactly I am not sure).
Anyway, that’s really beside the point. The bottom line is things like this are unfortunate. They suck. But are really out of the control of the restaurant. Sometimes, things are just what they are.
Perhaps Jeffry and the rest of the FOH crew could have handled things with more of a human touch, but sometimes humans are such difficult creatures to figure out.
An update: As I think I mentioned somewhere, I sent a very reasonable email explaining that I thought the service during my wait was not superb.
N/Naka went above and beyond and acknowledged that communication should have been better and that an apology certainly should have been issued for seating us 35 minutes late. They offered either a rebate on our drinks or a 100 dollar gift certificate for a future visit.
I took the gift card. Thank you to everyone for their input.
Finally made a resie. I read @ipsedixit’s post above indicating that no dietary restrictions are allowed (i.e. vegan or gluten free), so I interpreted that to mean you can only select between the full menu and vegetarian? So for example, if my dining guest would eat the fish but not the beef, then the guest would have to pick between the two menus?
WHAT IF I HAVE ALLERGIES OR PREFERENCES?
When we confirm your reservation, we will ask each guest about specific allergies. Please make sure you get everything over to us within one week of your reservation so that we can have enough preparation time. We will handle each instance as reasonably possible by substitution or omission. However, in order to maintain the integrity of our dishes, there are certain dietary accommodations we cannot facilitate - including but not limited to requests for: no vegetables, no fish/meat only, no seafood (including kelp broth) and severe bean or gluten allergies (that would exclude all soy sauce or miso).
At least in Japan, every kaiseki restaurant I know of will accommodate “seafood only.” What they typically won’t accommodate is someone who refuses to eat seafood, even in broths and sauces. That’s like telling an Indian chef not to use spices. I’m sure they’re happy not to serve you wagyu; cheaper for them.