Expectations vs Reality when dining out

Expectations vs Reality when dining out

posted in: News | 2

I was so excited

To try this restaurant. It had been around for a while, was situated at a beautiful location and I read good reviews about it. So we finally went!

I made a reservation, checked out the menu online and discussed with Peter which dishes we should try. Totally loved the pre-excitement vibe! On the day of our dinner I wondered what to wear – casual chic yet comfy or all in with heels and a dress. Casual comfy won since we wanted to keep the option open to walk home afterwards.

When we arrived at THE restaurant, there was a little crack in my ‘perfect evening out vision’ right away. No good evening, welcome to our restaurant or anything. No smile, no welcoming feeling at all. Just the standard question ‘do you have a reservation?’. I decided it wouldn’t spoil my mood, this was our night and I was determined to make the most out of it!

The disappointment continued

The next crack of disappointment arrived in the form of our starters. They were ok at best – Peter’s definitely better than mine. However, the biggest disappointment was when we got our main courses. Peter’s tuna was clearly overcooked. Instead of beautiful pink on the inside and moist in flavours, it was grey, dry and bland in taste. My beef cheek on the other hand was very undercooked, with a lot of fat left and therefore almost nauseating in flavours.

I just couldn’t pretend anymore – this was utterly disappointing and we couldn’t get out of there fast enough. We asked for the bill and I realised we were in and out of there within an hour. We ended up paying $200 for one glass of wine, two starters and two mains. I wish I had spend that money differently. So much for a nice evening out, catching up over a good dinner and spending some time together.

When we walked home it really hit me. This is why I love my book. This is why we get so many happy stories from other book owners. Evenings like this are one of the most frustrating things about eating out and trying new restaurants. The utter disappointment you feel after you were so looking forward to an evening out. I totally understand it when people say we just go to the same place because we know what we get.

Restaurant experiences

It’s such a shame though! There are still great restaurants in Singapore. Who give you a great night out – make you feel welcome from the moment you walk through the door. I don’t judge a restaurant on one element alone. It’s the whole experience that determines whether I’ll come back again or not. From the service to the staff and the concept to the atmosphere. It all plays a role and the combination is how I judge restaurants and how we choose restaurants for our book. Working through our list of 50 restaurants to choose from for our 2018 edition, I can honestly say that this year is the most difficult one so far. Luckily not all ’not so great’ experiences are as bad as the above one, but it’s disappointing nonetheless.

What’s your favourite restaurant in Singapore?

Let me know your recommendations in the comments so I can check them out and perhaps you’ll see them in our 2018 book!


NOTE – I’m not in the business of shaming or trash talking restaurants, hence I kept the restaurant name out of my article.

2 Responses

  1. Lynn K Lees
    | Reply

    Would love to see Artemis in the book 😊

    • EATSingapore
      | Reply

      Thanks Lynn – we’ll add them to our shortlist (or maybe they’re already there…) Any other suggestions let us know!

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