I have been to Barossa a number of times over the past few years, at least since '07 (even before Barossa was Barossa really), and have always had a lovely experience, but this has left an extremely bad taste in my mouth, both literally and metaphorically, and I have little, nay, no desire to return.
Essentially, a group of friends and I went for drinks after dinner. Of the four of us, three of us ordered a drink each, be it wine, a cocktail or a beer, and an order of bar snacks, and asked for water all round. However, we were promptly and unceremoniously told that we each needed to order a dirnk each before we could receive the glasses of water we asked for. First, it is extremely silly to refuse to serve water to customers in a country where the water is potable, but hey, you're not the only suspects, so I can't necessarily just single you out for that (it is still nonsensical, but I'm not singling you out, just -pointing- it out). But to tell us that you can't serve us water despite the fact that we ordered drinks (note that at least, with wine, you should serve water, and let me reiterate, at the very least, but hey, it's kinda nice to have a drink of water with other drinks too, but who am I to say. Apparently, no one. Touché, Barossa, touché.) AND food UNLESS we order a round of drinks? Silly and illogical. And to reiterate to us that it's 'company policy'? AND after we requested to see the manager, who was mysteriously absent on an ostensibly busy weekend night? And then, may the Power That Be eventually deigned it fit for us to receive 3 glasses of water, 'with no top-ups' as we were dutifully reminded? Hey, who are we to say anything... Oh wait, people with some sense and who have apparently spent 70 bucks on a round of drinks and snacks. The latter of which was the most lacklustre aggregation of onion rings I have had the misfortune of encountering outside of fast food joints (but we have a mutual understanding of how far my money is going to get me in terms of a meal, so we're even). The beauty was that the onion rings were named as such without remotely ressembling said food item. Less beauty, more mystery. I don't know what onion perished in the making of it, but it wasn't any onion I have ever met. Flour, batter perhaps. Onion? No.
Here's a note. Please do not treat your customers like a bunch of schmucks. We gave you a chance, at least the wait staff who have to suffer the brunt of recrimination, but not the nebulous Company, whose policy it was to insist on not serving water to customers who have ordered beverages, or at least a drink each. And apparently food doesn't count. Let me save you some time. If you insist on that being said 'Company Policy', politely tell people that you do not serve water from the get-go. Otherwise it is an exercise in extremely illogical, unadulterated nonsense.
I spent $18 per person.
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