I'm really seem to be having some terrible luck when I leave my house.
I went to BJ's Restaurant in Sacramento on Sunday evening with my friend after rafting for a few hours and we were starving! We asked to be seated on the patio since it was freezing inside the restaurant and after a couple moments we were greeted by our server who introduced herself to us as Courtney who took our orders.
We had decided to order nachos for an appetizer and I asked her if there was any meat in them. She said she was new and hadn't memorized all the dishes because there were a lot of them but she thinks the nachos have chili. I specified that I was a vegetarian and asked if we could order nachos with no meat and she said yes and wrote it down. I then put in an order for a soup entree and my friend got a pizza.
The food took a while to get to our table. I think it was about ten minutes that we were sipping on our drinks with our tummies grumbling. Our nachos were dropped off on our table and we started to chow down. The cheese on the nachos was firm and it was obvious they had been sitting around before being served which was really disappointing because the melty cheese battle is one of the best things about nachos. :( Anyway, we decided we were going to ask to have it heated up when our server came back and we continued munching in the meantime.
As we are looking around wondering where our server was, I was chewing a chip when suddenly I froze and looked at my friend who had a look on her face that said "oh s**t." I spit my chip out on a plate in front of me and frantically asked if I had just tasted meat. My friend took a closer look and discovered chili beneath the top layer of chips. I was furious due to how clear we were with communicating my diet restriction.
A different lady brought out our entrees and we brought it to her attention that we had made it clear to our server that we wanted no meat on the nachos and the lady said she was sorry. I told her that I was a vegetarian and that I ended up with a mouthful of chili. As she was holding my soup in a breadbowl, she told me that the soup that I ordered isn't vegetarian because it was made with chicken stock. Strike two. She told me the only vegetarian things they serve were salads and pastas. Great. She offered to comp the both soup and nachos as well as make me a new one without the chili. I said that was fine and I would not be ordering another entree to replace my soup. Before she walked back inside to put in the new order she mentioned it was our server's first day and that she was still learning.
Oh really. So, she really needs someone to teach her that a plant based diet = no animals? The soup fiasco is forgivable to an extent because I guess not everybody realizes that broccoli cheddar has more than just two ingredients.. but the chili infiltration in my fortress of nachos? What is wrong with you!
Our server came by our table a few minutes later and said she heard about what happened and said, "my bad" and explained that she had written no meat down but somehow must not have inputted our order properly. Irritated, I reminded her that I had emphasized the importance of no meat on my food and she apologized again and let us be.
When it came time to leave, she brought us out boxes for our food and as she was boxing my friends pizza to go, she said she was a vegetarian for eight years so she knows how important it is to not eat meat. (Or something to that effect)
YOU DON'T SAY!
She starts to box my friends chili nachos and jokingly says maybe we can find a meat-eater to eat them. Oh, how charming. Please get away from me Courtney.
Edit: I am somewhat sympathetic considering it was her first day. Sure, it's not like I risked a fatal allergic reaction but it was certainly a few steps above receiving a coke instead of a sprite. I suppose I will have to respectfully disagree with considering it an overreaction.
Edit 2: Aw darn there go the tags. Sorry folks.
Thanks for the reality check, everyone. I removed the Yelp review and will definitely be dining with more humble expectations.