During our first day at Chicago, my girlfriend insisted we should go for Ed Debevic's for dinner. I never heard of them so i wasn't sure what sort of food they have nor did i have any expectations about them. Plus, i was starving from all the travelling so i thought any food should be good at this point. We managed to find the place not too far from Hard Rock Cafe and from the outside, it looks pretty old school with the colour and design on their building so the first thing i thought was, it could be a retro place.
See the crowd going in? Shows how busy they are!
When we got in, the place was packed so we had to queue a while for our table which surprisingly didn't take too long. While queuing, there were two guys with two young girls in front of us waiting as well. All of a sudden, i heard the hostess shouting saying "Hey! How old are your kids?!" which took me by surprise. My first instinct was maybe it was too loud in there so she had to shout. Then one of the guys replied saying "I don't know, she's not my daughter..." to which the hostess replied even more louder with all the rudeness in the world saying "I don't frickin' care if she's your daughter or not i just wanna know how old is she!!!". Now here i was, feeling awkward cause i think i'm witnessing some horrible customer service in front of me and felt rather awful for the guy but i didn't understand how come he was cool about it and even laughing. My girlfriend on the other hand just smiled and giggled at that so i thought maybe it's a Chicago thing.
A not so happy customer!
After we were shown to our table, our waiter came and asked me to pass something from the table. I honestly thought he wanted the bottle of ketchup to get it refilled or something so i took that and he gave me the most annoyed look and said "Not that...why would i want that?! I want that! *points to something on the table*" I realised there was a signed bill on the table from the previous diners so i quickly handed him that, feeling somewhat embarrassed. He pointed back at me and said "We're not off to a good start here buddy!" and walks off. At this point, i was in between embarrassment and probably anger cause i swear this has got to be the worst place to dine in with such customer service and was complaining to everyone around me at the table. Suddenly, our waiter walked past our table and literally threw some hats on the table without stopping and shouted "Here, put on these stupid hats for me" and continue walking off. I won't lie, i did feel kinda threatened cause i thought if i didn't do what he asked, i might get some "extra ingredient" in my meal so i just put it on and asked the others if it's normal for them to talk this way. My girlfriend finally told me that's how their supposed to treat their customers cause they're known for being rude and people find it funny. It was only then i realised that all this attitude serving was part of their thing and felt a bit more relieved.
After i found out the truth about Ed Debevic's, i managed to play along with it and found it quite funny as well. The waiter came back for our orders and asked for our drinks. Calla always liked to mix her drinks so she ordered her usual "diet and cherry mix"and guess what our waiter said? "Oh, what's the point!?" LOL! When we got to our food part, i got a bit confuse with what cheese i wanted for my turkey burger to which my stupid apologetic side told the waiter "Sorry, i'm not from around here" for making it a bit confusing and he rolled his eyes at me saying "Well, guess what? I'm not from around here as well.." Talk about giving me an attitude...haha! While waiting for our meals, we got treated to a free show which was also a first for me cause it's not your usual live band performance you see in a cafe but this is more of a dance. What dance you asked? If i asked you to think of Coyote Ugly, what's the first image that you'll think of?
This? Girls on bar dancing right?
Ok take that concept but picture the cast of Hairspray dancing instead. Minus the booze, keep the sexual part of it but add a whole handful funny bit to it. What do you get?
I was hesitant to do a video of the dance but since i saw other people doing it, i decide to take a full video of it and i'm glad i got it cause the dude in the middle is absolutely hilarious! Oh and the guy to the left was our waiter.
Food arrived and it was sorta average. I wouldn't say it's bad either but i think most people go there for the weird customer service experience which is fun especially if you haven't been there or heard of it before like me. I just wonder if there are random people who absolutely have no idea about this and do not have anyone telling them that this is their 'shtik', would they storm out of the place? Halfway through our dinner, there was an announcement that went off saying "Attention to all diners! If you see your plate is empty and your drink is empty, then it's time for you to get out!" We finally asked for the bill after having enough humour for the night and normally you'd get some nice messages in other restaurants thanking you for dining in but because this is Ed Debevic's, things are a bit more different...
Yes, you still have to tip them
for their 'awful' service!
I did have a fun night here but i don't think i would want to come back randomly to grab a meal here especially not when i've had a bad day. On the other hand, I wonder how hard is it for the staffs to put on a crappy attitude whenever they start a day at work or do the management actually hire those who have natural talents from other restaurants?
One thing i know for sure, if there's a Ed Debevic's in Brunei, it's definitely gonna be easy to hire staffs. I'm just sayin'... :P
[Update 17Jan2018] - Wow. To think that 8 years later, this scam is still going on as I'm still getting the odd notifications every now and then with comments on this post. TLDR: If you guys stumble upon this random site because of the APL*ITUNES 866-71-2-7753 charge on your credit/debit card, call your bank immediately and report it as a fraud. If you have an iTunes account and have any bank cards associated with it, you might wanna beware. I normally check my bank accounts every now and then just to be sure that there's nothing fishy going on in there and of course at the same time, just like many of you *secretly* hoping that someone might accidentally transfer $1 million to my account as well. I've had a few cases of credit card frauds happening and so far, banks have been very cooperative with disputing transactions and issuing me a new card (especially my local bank, SCB Brunei. Well done!). So today, i checked one of my overseas bank account and found out tha
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