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Old 10-09-2013, 02:52 PM   #1396
ddluvsdisney
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That's so disappointing!! Sorry you had an awful night. I keep hoping it'll be better by the end of December.

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Old 10-09-2013, 02:59 PM   #1397
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Originally Posted by Abby's Dad View Post
We are back - we ate at CG on 9/29, and we will never return. This is sad, as this has been a regular of ours for years, but the service was less that what one would receive at Denny's. Once we were finally able to order (we were seated in the bar area before our table was ready - twenty minutes there and nobody even acknowledged our presence, let alone solicited a drink order), which was a considerable wait after being seated at our table, the drink order was incorrect. Once we got the right drinks, they were decent (the cucumber fizz and the sake martini). We ordered a Spicy Kazan for our appy, along with wine. A Dragon Roll was brought and dumped on our table by someone other than our waiter. After not being able to attract anyone's attention, let alone our waiter, who was busy talking with the other waiters at their little "station," we ate the Dragon Roll, as it was something we had never tried, and it was good. Halfway through the waiter appeared to see if we were ready for our entry, and I told him no, but that we would like the wine that we had ordered for the Spicy Kazan. He offered to replace the sushi, but kind of late for that. My wife had the scallops, which were good, no better than at Red Lobster, but good. I had the filet, and it was good, but again, no better than many that I have had at chain restaurants. And again, the wine that we ordered for our entrees only arrived halfway through, when he finally came back, and we reminded him (though I must say, that the wine-by-the-glass selection is excellent). After the fireworks were over (and I must say, though I didn't care for the décor changes, the new floor to ceiling windows are great - we were able to see the whole show from our table, and we were not even seated at the window.), we waited and waited, while the waiter busied himself clearing tables and the like. Finally returned, ordered dessert and coffee. Brought coffee, which was gone by the time the dessert finally appeared - asked for more coffee, never got it, and he never returned until we asked someone if we could have our check. The desserts (I had the lemon meringue cheesecake, and I don't recall what my wife had), were uninspired, unimaginative, and definitely not worthy of anything that should be coming from a chef-run Signature Dining location kitchen. This was definitely the only bad experience of our trip - and we had some other great meals. I normally tip 25 to 30% at Cali Grill, because the service and food have always been that good. We were using TIW, so he got the required 18%, but no more. A full letter has been sent to Disney - it will be interesting to note their response.ed

Normally I let things that are subpar just go by the way, and I don't complain (which is probably my mistake), but there was no excuse for this. If they were not able to obtain and train appropriate help, they should not have reopened, and they definitely should not have opened when they were obviously not ready and then expect the customers to pay full price for the privilege of training their staff. Fortunately, there are many excellent restaurants on property, so there is no need for CG for us anymore, and there are many excellent restaurants off property in the area. I felt the need to tell of my experience, since I had written of how much I enjoy CG and in fact, doubted some of the critical reviews. I wish we would had cancelled our ADR there and dined elsewhere.
sorry to hear of your bad experience ... seems like the framework is there for a good restaurant (good wine list, good sushi and apps, etc.) but surprised how many bad reviews I have read about the service - something they should be able to get a handle on

Hopefully it improves and quickly as we have an ADR there next week
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Old 10-09-2013, 03:26 PM   #1398
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Hopefully it improves and quickly as we have an ADR there next week
.For your sake, I hope it does also - supposedly all of their original staff was retained, but we saw very few that we recognized. For us, this was one of only one or two restaurants on site that had top notch service, and the dining experience was one of few that were second only to Victoria & Alberts. Sadly, this wasn't the case for our experience this time. Hopefully yours will be great.
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Old 10-09-2013, 05:33 PM   #1399
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Originally Posted by ddluvsdisney View Post
That's so disappointing!! Sorry you had an awful night. I keep hoping it'll be better by the end of December.

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Old 10-09-2013, 05:48 PM   #1400
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All these negative reviews are interesting to read. We have reservations for 6 pm on the 1st of November and were looking forward to a great, leisurely dinner to kick off our evening. Now we are kind of intrigued and are looking forward to the possibility of a horrifically horrid experience we can spend the whole night laughing about. This is the start to our Monorail Bar Crawl, so either way the evening will be a blast. I will report back and let you all know how it goes... if I can remember it.
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Old 10-09-2013, 06:43 PM   #1401
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Originally Posted by Abby's Dad View Post
We are back - we ate at CG on 9/29, and we will never return. This is sad, as this has been a regular of ours for years, but the service was less that what one would receive at Denny's. Once we were finally able to order (we were seated in the bar area before our table was ready - twenty minutes there and nobody even acknowledged our presence, let alone solicited a drink order), which was a considerable wait after being seated at our table, the drink order was incorrect. Once we got the right drinks, they were decent (the cucumber fizz and the sake martini). We ordered a Spicy Kazan for our appy, along with wine. A Dragon Roll was brought and dumped on our table by someone other than our waiter. After not being able to attract anyone's attention, let alone our waiter, who was busy talking with the other waiters at their little "station," we ate the Dragon Roll, as it was something we had never tried, and it was good. Halfway through the waiter appeared to see if we were ready for our entry, and I told him no, but that we would like the wine that we had ordered for the Spicy Kazan. He offered to replace the sushi, but kind of late for that. My wife had the scallops, which were good, no better than at Red Lobster, but good. I had the filet, and it was good, but again, no better than many that I have had at chain restaurants. And again, the wine that we ordered for our entrees only arrived halfway through, when he finally came back, and we reminded him (though I must say, that the wine-by-the-glass selection is excellent). After the fireworks were over (and I must say, though I didn't care for the décor changes, the new floor to ceiling windows are great - we were able to see the whole show from our table, and we were not even seated at the window.), we waited and waited, while the waiter busied himself clearing tables and the like. Finally returned, ordered dessert and coffee. Brought coffee, which was gone by the time the dessert finally appeared - asked for more coffee, never got it, and he never returned until we asked someone if we could have our check. The desserts (I had the lemon meringue cheesecake, and I don't recall what my wife had), were uninspired, unimaginative, and definitely not worthy of anything that should be coming from a chef-run Signature Dining location kitchen. This was definitely the only bad experience of our trip - and we had some other great meals. I normally tip 25 to 30% at Cali Grill, because the service and food have always been that good. We were using TIW, so he got the required 18%, but no more. A full letter has been sent to Disney - it will be interesting to note their response.ed

Normally I let things that are subpar just go by the way, and I don't complain (which is probably my mistake), but there was no excuse for this. If they were not able to obtain and train appropriate help, they should not have reopened, and they definitely should not have opened when they were obviously not ready and then expect the customers to pay full price for the privilege of training their staff. Fortunately, there are many excellent restaurants on property, so there is no need for CG for us anymore, and there are many excellent restaurants off property in the area. I felt the need to tell of my experience, since I had written of how much I enjoy CG and in fact, doubted some of the critical reviews. I wish we would had cancelled our ADR there and dined elsewhere.
I am so sorry that your experience was less than wonderful. I was just so disappointed in CG and we are now talking about never going again, also. I was really hoping that things had changed since we were there and that it was back to the wonderful restaurant that it was. Sorry to hear that it wasn't, bummer.

Laura
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:10 PM   #1402
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I am so sorry that your experience was less than wonderful. I was just so disappointed in CG and we are now talking about never going again, also. I was really hoping that things had changed since we were there and that it was back to the wonderful restaurant that it was. Sorry to hear that it wasn't, bummer.

Laura
Thanks Laura. I am not holding out much hope at this point, as the Top Of The World Lounge (at the top of BLT) is also under Chef Piasecki's mismanagement, and the service has gone downhill there also. I asked one of the waitresses there who I was familiar with from previous visits what was going on, and she said that everyone is wondering that, which includes menu changes over there also.
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Old 10-09-2013, 08:59 PM   #1403
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Thanks Laura. I am not holding out much hope at this point, as the Top Of The World Lounge (at the top of BLT) is also under Chef Piasecki's mismanagement, and the service has gone downhill there also. I asked one of the waitresses there who I was familiar with from previous visits what was going on, and she said that everyone is wondering that, which includes menu changes over there also.
This is all just so sad. What in the world is going on.

Laura
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:10 PM   #1404
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My food was fine when I ate there on Sunday. The service lacked. I detailed it in my trip report though.
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:45 PM   #1405
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We ate there on Oct 4....four of us and though it was OK it was not a stellar experience. I have eaten there maybe 20 times prior to the renovation and had mostly excellent experiences with great food. I thought the food was good but certainly not great and our server , who we have had in the past was over the top on the dramatic side, to the point that it took away from our dining experience. We had eaten dinner prior to this at Kona on Oct 2 and everyone else in our group liked the meal better at Kona, especially the sushi. Although its hard to compare the two restaurants, everything at Kona was on the top of the game, food and service, while Cali Grill was good but not great. Maybe I expect too much....just was not wowed by the whole dining experience.
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Old 10-09-2013, 10:17 PM   #1406
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Okay everyone I have to add my two cents.... I had an absolutely FANTASTIC meal at California Grill and think the new restaurant is HEAD and SHOULDERS above what it used to be...
Idk the last time any of the people who think the old restaurant was better ate at Cali Grill but it had really started to show its age... I think the Filet with the teriyaki was absolutely terrible as well as many of the old apps (my last meal was pitiful)...
The new menu is fresh! And right now it is the most exotic on WDW property! I think it is a foodies paradise with the Duck app as well as the Surf and Turf and even the Pork "Sushi"! I think the Filet is MUCH better than it used to be and the risotto is outstanding!

I have to say my waitress was Dawn and she was INCREDIBLE much much much much better than service I have had there in the past! I will say my meal took quite a bit of time but I'm not complaining about that at all! I hate when signature restaurants try and "turn tables"!!!

So in my opinion California Grill has retaken its claim as the best restaurant on WDW property (exception: V&A's) I have COMPLETE faith in Chef Piasecki and his staff! So please people keep dropping your ADR's because I have no problem taking your place and eating at this OUTSTANDING restaurant!
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Old 10-10-2013, 08:58 AM   #1407
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Okay everyone I have to add my two cents.... I had an absolutely FANTASTIC meal at California Grill and think the new restaurant is HEAD and SHOULDERS above what it used to be...
Idk the last time any of the people who think the old restaurant was better ate at Cali Grill but it had really started to show its age... I think the Filet with the teriyaki was absolutely terrible as well as many of the old apps (my last meal was pitiful)...
The new menu is fresh! And right now it is the most exotic on WDW property! I think it is a foodies paradise with the Duck app as well as the Surf and Turf and even the Pork "Sushi"! I think the Filet is MUCH better than it used to be and the risotto is outstanding!

I have to say my waitress was Dawn and she was INCREDIBLE much much much much better than service I have had there in the past! I will say my meal took quite a bit of time but I'm not complaining about that at all! I hate when signature restaurants try and "turn tables"!!!

So in my opinion California Grill has retaken its claim as the best restaurant on WDW property (exception: V&A's) I have COMPLETE faith in Chef Piasecki and his staff! So please people keep dropping your ADR's because I have no problem taking your place and eating at this OUTSTANDING restaurant!
I am glad there are some who have had a good meal there. But it does seem to me that most have not. Just not worth the money to us.

Laura
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Old 10-10-2013, 11:41 AM   #1408
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My food was fine when I ate there on Sunday. The service lacked. I detailed it in my trip report though.
That stinks your service was poor throughout your trip... Honestly I had the best service I have ever had throughout an entire trip every night was great! Especially compared to years past where I have had service thats hit or miss...

However I would say the overall customer service was really really poor in comparison to what it used to be... I thought there were many things that were really bad!

In the past I would say average Service at a restaurant is around a 7.5 and average customer service around the resort is a 8.5 however this trip I would say the complete opposite the Service in restaurants was probably a 9.5 or 10 absolutely outstanding and the overall resort was probably a 7 or a 7.5...

*For reference sake I would say that DCL is a 10 in both categories in My Experiences and I have heard ABD, Disneyland and Tokyo Disney is the same or even better than DCL if thats possible!
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Old 10-10-2013, 01:10 PM   #1409
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That stinks your service was poor throughout your trip... Honestly I had the best service I have ever had throughout an entire trip every night was great! Especially compared to years past where I have had service thats hit or miss...

However I would say the overall customer service was really really poor in comparison to what it used to be... I thought there were many things that were really bad!

In the past I would say average Service at a restaurant is around a 7.5 and average customer service around the resort is a 8.5 however this trip I would say the complete opposite the Service in restaurants was probably a 9.5 or 10 absolutely outstanding and the overall resort was probably a 7 or a 7.5...
California Grill was the only major service issue we have had this trip outside of transportation issues because of the resort monorail line being down. (We had poor service during most of our HHN trip but thats a separate vacation)

For normal sit down meals, Yachtsman was far above anything else so far, we do still have Jiko left for normal meals - everything else is F&W Special Events left. Special Events have always had good service.

As far as service in the parks, everything has been ok.
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Old 10-10-2013, 04:14 PM   #1410
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California Grill was the only major service issue we have had this trip outside of transportation issues because of the resort monorail line being down. (We had poor service during most of our HHN trip but thats a separate vacation)

For normal sit down meals, Yachtsman was far above anything else so far, we do still have Jiko left for normal meals - everything else is F&W Special Events left. Special Events have always had good service.

As far as service in the parks, everything has been ok.
We will be eating at Yachtsman next week. I did have ressie at CG but after our dinner there back in Sept. and all the bad reports still, I have cancel it and booked Yachtsman. Have not eaten here in a long time so really hoping this will be a great meal. I did read your report and saw all the pictures (and thank you so much for those), sounds like you had a really nice meal. I am keeping my fingers crossed that ours is the same.

Laura
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