Diner experience a bust, service not noteworthy

Tricia Peterson,Washburn Review

I had many good experiences in New York City, but the one that stood out the most was the worst experience, of course.

I would have to say that it was the single worst dining experience in my entire life. I must tell you that I was extremely hungover and had just woke up. My friend Kelly and I walked around Manhattan in search for a place to eat where we wouldn’t have to stand in line for an hour before getting seated.

We found a place called Ellen Stardust Diner that looked nice enough and there was no line out front. Score. We walked in and were seated right away. Score. The seats were cramped and we were next to the server station and bar. No score. Usually this wouldn’t be a problem, but at this restaurant, it proved to be a hazard. The music was loud but wasn’t that big of deal, at first. After ordering off of the extremely over priced menu, $21.99 for a freaking cheeseburger, and getting our drinks, I realized that our server, instead of serving us, was singing and dancing around the restaurant.

Our food didn’t take long, but some other person than our server served it to us – she was too busy dancing around. The food was ok. The cuisine offered is that of your typical diner food: burgers, fries, shakes and meatloaf. I wouldn’t say it was great, nor would I say it was worth the money they wanted. Kelly ordered chicken fettucini Alfredo which didn’t seem to have any sauce or flavor. The burger I ordered was like two inches thick and reminded me of a hockey puck. The fries served were crispy and good, but nothing special. Nothing was special about this place, except for the singing waitstaff. I guess I should be nice, they are trying to get on Broadway, and I mistakingly patronized it unknowingly—this is not their fault. BUT, I would never go back. I don’t like people singing in my face, nor do I appreciate being ignored by my waitress so she can sing and dance. On that note, the music was so extremely loud, Kelly and I couldn’t even talk to each other, let alone ask a member of the waitstaff for extra sauce. I also had a problem with the servers sanding on the back of my chair and dancing, kicking my seat while I was trying to eat. Not only that but I also had someone singing in my face and jangling bells and just causing me to want to bolt without paying. I did pay, but after the waitress chased me down to demand more of a tip, it made me want to rethink paying for this horrible experience.

Normally, I have something good to say about the restaurant, but not this time. This restaurant offended and appalled me in a way that I can’t believe this place is popular. I guess if you like people singing in your face while you try to eat instead of serving you, go to this diner. If you are like me and want to actually get service when you pay over $20 for a cheeseburger, go to another restaurant, even if you have to wait 30 minutes, it will be worth the wait.