Saturday, March 01, 2008
Grecco's Pizza is the BEST!The other night we went to Grecco's, home of the best pizza in the universe. We took Hub's mother with us, because we always do, and each of us ordered our "usuals."
The staff at Grecco's knows us so well, all we have to do is walk in and they say, "The usual?" and we say "Yup,*" and then we sit down in OUR BOOTH and wait a few minutes and, like magic, our food appears and it's always superb.
This night, we had a new waitress, and we had to actually order from the menu in front of her because she's not used to the place and the fact that almost everybody who goes there is a "regular" and has "the usual." She'll learn. She was a sweet girl; she's just new.
To continue this fascinating saga, we sat there and waited, and waited, and waited, and then two of our three got their food and ate their food and finished their food and the third of the three was still waiting, and, well, we started to wonder what was wrong back there in the kitchen with my "usual."
When she finally brought it to our table, it was the wrong pizza. Sometimes, when it's the wrong pizza, it's still okay, but not this time. She apologized, another server came out and apologized; everybody apologized. We were not in a hurry and this kind of thing happens, and it really wasn't a big deal to us, but it was to the restaurant.
They comped our entire order.
See, big chain restaurants have a lot to learn from the small, family-owned restaurants who genuinely care about their customers because they KNOW them. The "regulars" at the big places have their "usuals," too, but who can remember that when corporate policy rules made by old rich guys in bad suits a thousand miles away have to be followed? The employees at big chains might know their customers, but often their hands are tied by this same corporate policy.
At Grecco's, the owner is usually back in the kitchen, helping. At most of the big chains, the owner doesn't know that beef comes from cows. At Grecco's, we're known by name. At a big chain, we're known by a number.
Last December, my Other Sister took us all to dinner in a big fancy expensive restaurant, and our waiter spilled a pitcher of ice water, cubes and all, down my back. It was two days before the lining of my coat was dry. We got nothing from the restaurant, not even a little discount. I'd tell you the name of the restaurant but I'm not that petty.
Grecco's accidentally brings us the wrong pizza, and felt so bad they comped everyone at the table's dinner.
Which of these two restaurants has the best "corporate policy?"
When you come to visit me, I'll take you to Grecco's. It's tiny and oddly-shaped and weird, but the servers are the greatest and the food is divine.
Miguel, I would have taken you there but you left too soon! (Let's all go to Miguel's blog and tell him to update! His posts are so beautiful, and he's not updated since last fall!)
So, Grecco's, where I get deep-dish Sicilian pizza made from scratch, we'll keep coming back, and coming back, because you understand far more than just how to make out-of-this-world Italian food of all kinds. You also understand that customers look upon a favorite restaurant as a friend who understands their tastes and remembers them, as well as remembering their names and where they like to sit, and that those customers also know YOUR names, and how old your kids are, etc.
At the big places, I'm ticket #479, fat chick with a soaked, freezing back, we hope she doesn't sue but otherwise no big deal; at Grecco's, I'm Jane and my usual is deep-dish Sicilian pizza with extra sauce and a diet coke with innumerable free refills. Our servers also know what Hub and my MIL always order there.
I understand that if a restaurant is HUGE and
Grecco's does it, and I have a feeling that even if his restaurant was large, he'd still hire the kind of staff that remembers their customers' names and what they'll probably order for dinner.
Hurry on over. You'll love this place. Pee before you go; they don't have a public restroom.
* People around here say "Yup." Sorry.
Mamacita, Scheiss Weekly
Posted by Mamacita (The REAL one) @ 12:44 PM | |