In Praise of Complaining

Although we’re always delighted to receive plaudits for the quality of our food and our service, running restaurants is not all 5-star reports and glowing reviews. We do sometimes get things wrong.

So if your food arrives cold when it should be steaming hot or something has arrived meant for another table, would you count yourself amongst the 38% of the British population who say they would never complain or are you in the other group – the one that saves its ire for an angry Tripadvisor review or a disappointed comment on twitter once you get home? There is also a third group – a rarer breed it is true, but nevertheless significant – who don’t mind complaining in a restaurant, but who would prefer to do it on Twitter, posting photographs of the thing about which they are unhappy rather than talking to a member of staff who may well be able to help. This group, to be brutal, gives us all a headache.


So – while we will always try to make your time with us as fabulous as possible, in case things do go a wee bit astray and you are in the unfortunate position of not being as happy with everything as we would hope – here’s our two-penneth on what to do…

Mistakes happen. If there’s something wrong alert a member of staff, just sing out and simply explain what’s wrong. We do genuinely want to know. Allow us to correct it. It’s disappointing to read about a misdemeanour on google some days later when we could have dealt with the issue there and then.

That being said – if you feel your complaint hasn’t been taken seriously or dealt with in an inappropriate manner then by all means, unleash your inner Grace Dent and let the world know. Online reviews are really powerful – good and bad. We read them all the time.

And those stories you hear about staff tampering with the food of people who have complained? They’re mainly apocryphal. No one would last long at Balans Soho Society doing that sort of thing. We have a number of stories about our staff tampering with each other, mind you, but they’re for a whole different type of blog altogether…

Back to all posts…