We have lived about 2 miles away from this restaurant for the past six years and pass it each time we take our family to Bravo Italian for a family meal. My husband and I decided to try J. Gilberts for one of our ""date"" nights sans children.
The first visit, we both enjoyed most everything. The waitress was a tad too talkative and annoying, but the food was incredibly good. We both had petite filets with broccolini and pecan green beans. They were the best steaks we've ever had. The atmosphere had ""ambiance"", and we felt like this was going to be our ""date night"" goto restaurant going forward.
About six weeks later, my husband had received a coupon for $15 off of $30 via his email. He printed it out and made a second ""date night"" reservation for us on a Saturday evening. This visit was regretable from the start, and we will not be returning to J. Gilberts because of a few minor flaw in the service.
Upon arrival (about 5 minutes before our reservation time), we walked into an emtpy foyer/greet area...no customers. The hostess advised us it would be a few minutes before we could be seated. In perusing around, we noticed several wait staff in the bar area gathered chatting and laughing. When we were finally seated (about 10 minutes later), our walk through the restaurant to our table (back near the kitchen entrance/exit) showed that the restaurant wasn't ""packed"" by any means. Why the wait?
We had our coupon sitting out throughout our entire meal...visible to our waiter. We opted to forego the appetizers and dessert w/this meal, and I do feel this alters wait staff attitudes. We like to save our appetites for the meal, and had other plans for dessert at another restaurant. The meal was spectacular, and we presented the waiter w/our coupon which he took to formulate our bill. He returned and indicated that in the fine print of the coupon it states ""not valid on Saturdays"". An honest mistake on our part which we acknowledged and I reached for my wallet to get my debit card to pay for our meal.
Here's the deal breaker: the waiter, taps the coupon, comments ""Yeah--you just have to read the fine print.""...and rushes off to go take the individual orders of an 8 person party next to us before processing our check so we could go. I looked at my husband in disbelief: ""Did he really just condescend and instruct us to 'read the fine print'?"" Did he ask his manager for an exception on the coupon as a courtesy? If he did, he didn't indicate this. Even if he didn't, his communication was arrogant and belittling. My tip(?): instruction to him on how he could have better handled our scenario and subsequently retained our patronage.
We will be returning to Bravo Italian just up the road from J. Gilberts for future dinners (date nights, family dinners for us and our three children, and my husband's many business dinners). We have never been disappointed w/their service and food.