Monday, April 05, 2010

Forgive the rant but...

So last night Mrs. The Pol, Momma of The Pol, Baby Sister of The Pol, and myself all went out to dinner at Soccer Taco On Market Square. I love having a quick and easy Mexican place on the square and also wanted a cold beer. The food was expectantly good for what it is and the beer was cold so wins there, but I have to point out the faults because this has happened twice now.

The front of the house manager really needs to get his act together because the service is lacking. From the almost fight that broke out over tables on the patio to the time it took to place drink orders (and then have the drink order be partially wrong) there are some sophomore year bumps that need to be worked out.

Unfortunately I'm not picking on this aspect just after one night. Several weeks ago the Mrs. and I tried to go. We were seated on the patio and after 20-25 minutes of being ignored, by three different waiters, we walked over to Lenny's for a grab-and-go.

Again, let me say I love Soccer Taco, I just want it to improve in the service dept. so that I can feel comfortable making it a part of my dinner rotation.


The Modern Gal said...

I heard someone else complaining recently about never being acknowledged by the host/hostess. I hate to hear this about Soccer Taco, because it's become my favorite Mexican restaurant. I hope they get their act together.

Patrick Beeson said...

My wife and I had the same issue Friday at lunch. Not only did the hostess take 10 minutes to seat us at a table that was open the entire time (no line in front of us), but we sat for 20 minutes eating chips without drinks before leaving.

Nobody came to take our orders (drinks or food) despite me making eye contact with several of the wait staff.

I can't imagine why they would give us chips and nothing else.

I've never had a bad experience at the old location; we might write-off the new one and keep with tradition.

Skib said...

I've experienced the same thing multiple times. Love the food. Hate the service.

Randall Brown said...

Our family has been to Market Square Soccer Taco several times and had good service, food and very little wait each time.

Discordia said...

I've been boycotting soccer taco for 3 months running now.

Awful service/incompetent server at the market square location. Order wasn't right. Informed server order wasn't right. Server fixes one aspect of the 3 items that were missing. Inform server again that he forget 2 items. Server fixes one more aspect. Finally complain and point out how ridiculous it was. Order is finally fixed. And then me and my friend had to wait 15 minutes on our check. And then the server shorted her on her change (she's a career waitress and was furious).

Repeatedly had horrible/negligent service at the bearden hill location. Ignored, forgotten, or just apathy. Not cool.

And lastly, Soccer Taco Catering. It is a sham. We've used it multiple times for where i work, and let this be a message to all: Soccer Taco does not cater. Soccer Taco delivers mexican food and abandons it sitting on a table without telling anyone

The people we were feeding came down expecting a lunch. What they encountered were several cheap disposable service trays stacked one on top of another. No plates. No napkins. No serving spoons. Nothing.

Oh, and yours truly got stuck with cleaning up/disposing of the whole affair. Ever clean up all the catering utensils/trays/foodstuffs after feeding 70 people? It blows.

Eric said...

Whenever I've gone there I've had fast service. I've heard many stories to the contrary though.

I like them because I generally got swift service because no one eats there. The food is mediocre but sometimes I don't want to wait 15 minutes for a seat at Tomato Head.

Anonymous said...

Aside from a couple of the mainstay restaurants (like Tomato Head), service on the square is seriously suffering these days. I've visited early in the day the past 3 Saturdays (before the dinner rush starts) and have been disappointed by the poor and slow service I've received each time. Maybe the square is getting too much traffic so they don't think they *need* to do as good a job?

Athomp said...

Being a resident and restaurant owner down here, I eat out a LOT downtown. First off, service in just about ALL restaurants in this town is either hit or miss, or just plain terrible year round. No penache or passion. Personally, I think this is because we live in a college town. That creates a unique situation of often privledged kids who only have to work now that they are in college for extra coin. This creates an awful situation from a service standpoint because these kids are only doing this for a short time.

A server or bartender who gives good service, 99% of the time, will be a person who is self-motivated (even if its just by money) and generally has their shit together.

I've had terrible service at all restaurants on Market Square EXCEPT Tomato Head (which I still think is the best restaurant in ALL of Knoxville overall). It's especially true of Soccer Taco and Cafe 4. I believe the reasons for this is because they employ people who have no stake in downtown Knoxville. Both are often high school or young college kids.

And don't get me started on their managers. I've literally never seen a manager at Cafe 4. I have no idea who the manager at Soccer Taco is....all I ever see are the kids running the restaurant.

Though, to be fair, there is one exceptional server (yes ONE) at Soccer Taco. Don't know his name, but he's a white guy with a beard (short and stocky) and he's just awesome. Upsells well, friendly, FAST, and seems to really care about his customers. Find out his name and ASK to sit in his section.

I have been trying Cocoa Moon a few times as an alternative since it's owned by the folks who own Casa don Gallo out west. It's not too bad if you are looking for something a little funky and their Patron Margaritas were great. Best of all, I had good service there now 4 times in a row.