I like my Japanese BBQ meat and while not the standards of Yazawa (highly recommend!), I think Gyu-Kaku is better than Seoul Garden at least. Having eaten at the Anchorage and UE Square branches, I was very disappointed with the service and quality of food at this branch. Shocking! It is so bad that I decided I have to write a review to prevent other fellow Singaporeans in being conned by this particular branch of this franchise.
I am someone who do not mind paying for good food but charging me without me ordering it is just unscrupulous or dishonest. I ate there last Friday on 19th April, and my first warning should have been at the empty atmosphere when I came during dinner time. But having driven over there, I decided to give it a try.
I brought a group of my overseas business partners, 6 of us total and ordered portions of normal beef tongue and kalbi but when the meat came, it was literally grey! I think with the lack of turnover, the meat is not fresh so I pointed out to the manager then who is Japanese and said he will get me better meat and apologized for the quality of the meat as he said that his freezer was not working and some of the beef might have gone bad. The next portion was better but the shocker was when the bill came!
They charged us for Wagyu beef claiming that the meat they replaced us with is Wagyu beef. Okay first of all, the meat was slightly better but if that is the standard of Wagyu beef, I think I would have much preferred to ordinary beef at say Yazawa or Aburiya at Robertson Quay. Secondly, how can you not have more normal meat on a Friday night!
The management was also terrible in resolving the issue, and the Japanese staff did not help as well. I don't think there is any benefit in having Japanese staff since they are not making sushi or need any Japanese chef skills and all I expect coming to Gyu-Kaku is to get a consistent quality expected from a franchise.
I believe this restaurant is lacking some basic business ethics and I even feel that they are out to con customers, especially those in big groups and usually wont check their receipt item by item. The atmosphere there was also terrible and I think the UE Square branch or Anchorage is much nicer with the darker lighting to drink beer. The only reason I chose this branch was due to the availability of seating on Friday night and easier parking outside but now I know why it is so desserted!
I quite shocked at the standard of this branch as I understand this is a franchise but I guess unscrupulous management trying to meet targets will do anything to squeeze a few more dollars out of local customers.
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