Lima Restaurant: Good Food, Abominable Service

Last night I had dinner with a small group of Flyertalkers. At my suggestion we ate at Lima Restaurant. They had availability for our sized group, they offer a pre-theatre menu (3 courses, $35 dollars) until 7 p.m., and I’ve been meaning to go back and try them since they re-opened after a renovation.

The food was surprisingly good. The service was appallingly bad. It was the worst service I’ve had since brunch at Poste.

The waiter came over to take orders but the person he started with wasn’t ready. He refused to start with someone else at the table, and hovered over the member of our party who wasn’t ready instead. He said that he had to rotate in the specific order he was asking for, and couldn’t rotate beginning at a different spot around the table.

Water was requested three times before it came initially. A glass of ice had to be requested twice over twenty minutes. After the first course they waited to clear plates until everyone was finished. They didn’t wait to clear after the second course. We were practically the only ones in the restaurant, it couldn’t have been that they needed to turn the table…

At one point they were cleaning the floor beneath our table during dinner, with the server used the legs of my wife’s chair to brace himself while doing so!

Post-renovation it seemed clear that they’ve given up on being a ‘restaurant’, they’re focusing on being a trendy lounge instead. As a result they simply don’t pay attention to their table service. The space itself is neat. As before the renovation, they have a heated and covered area outside the restaurant, so you can lounge outside even in winter. Inside it’s bright colors, clean lines, and attractive people. Upstairs is strange, though, with a monster-sized television showing Seinfeld and then old Johnny Carson in the main dining room. It really made no sense (to me at least, but then I suppose I wasn’t really the audience for it — and I always enjoyed Seinfeld).

It’s a shame, because my steak was outstanding. And they have churros for dessert! (Though the sauces that came with the churros were disappointing…)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Out of curiosity, I checked their web site for the Pre-Theatre Menu and got a 404 (site not found). But their other menus come through OK. It could be they are phasing out the pre-theatre menu (and helping it out the door by annoying their customers!)

  2. I agree with you assessment of the restaurant. We went and just sat at the bar early in the evening for cockctails and a few appetizers. We felt like they thought waiting on us was a bother. I won’t be going back unless I hear that the service has changed.

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