My Dining Pet Peeves: From Point Barrow, Alaska to Key West, Florida

I love going to a good restaurant, and I don’t care if it is fancy or not. Sometimes casual places are just what is called for. But certain things should not happen at any restaurant.

  1. Children screaming
  2. Children running around the dining area
  3. People yelling at each other, especially in a foreign language
  4. Rude and/or absent staff
  5. Bad food

Some of these things are obviously not the fault of the restaurant, but there are things that they can do to fix the problem.

Recently, we were out of town and we dined at a Ruth’s Chris. Everything was wonderful until a family dining there let their children run around the dining room screaming. I was about to walk out because I was not going to pay $200+ for a meal I was not going to enjoy simply because of my surroundings. Happily, I did not have to as the restaurant manager went over to the table with the unruly children and said something to them (I wish I knew what) that instantly shut them up.

Conversely, I was out at a nice meal at the Commodore, an upscale steakhouse in Key West about two years ago. There was a very large table next to us, all adults, but they were intoxicated and yelling so loud at each other that we could not hear each other at my table without shouting ourselves. We asked if we could be moved but the staff refused to move us. The manager actually told us to deal with it as they were going to make a lot more money off of the larger table than our four-top. I was outraged, and I will never go back there after that. Funny thing is that I met those same people from the rowdy table the next day. They actually recognized me and apologized for their behavior. And they said that they asked to be put in the private room that the restaurant had but were refused because they didn’t want to get it dirty. WTF!

Things like bad service and bad food need to be changed. When they are not, these restaurants do not usually last long because who wants bad food and bad service? Sometimes they can get away with it though because if name recognition.

Anyway, that is my rant for the day…

BTW, I have never been to Alaska, but same would apply there. I chose that for my title today as it is the northernmost city in the USA and Key West is the Southernmost City in the continental USA.

For more information about things to do and see in our island city, go to our Key West Web Site. You can also visit our Key West Events Calendar to see more details on upcoming special events.

And for more restaurant reviews check out our restaurant review section of this blog as well as our restaurant reviews at

Island Genn – Your Key West Concierge


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