10 Signs You’re at a Bad Restaurant

6 min read

Before you head out on your next dining excursion, you might want to take a look at this article to avoid a bad dining experience. Here are ten ways you can tell you’re about to eat at a bad restaurant.

10. It’s Dirty

Dirty Dishes
Source: Pixabay

Well, this goes without saying, but if the bathroom is filthy, the tables are dirty, the salt and pepper shakers are clogged, there’s dried ketchup caked around the bottle lid, and the menus are a mess, find some other place to dine. But, it’s not just the inside of the restaurant you should be concerned about. If the windows, doors and even the parking lot (e.g. trash and cigarette butts on the ground, open dumpsters, etc.) are dirty, it shows that the restaurant isn’t focused on cleanliness, restaurant industry consultant Ken Rice told Reader’s Digest. If the outside area isn’t clean, perhaps the area where your food is being prepared isn’t clean either, Rice added.

9. It Smells Bad

Smelly Cheese Shop
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Well, if a restaurant is dirty, then naturally it’s going to smell bad. But, it’s not just foul smells you should look out for. If you notice smells like burned food and stale grease, it’s a sign that the kitchen area hasn’t been cleaned properly in quite a while. It’s important to note that some buildings will naturally have an unpleasant smell, CityPages.com says. For example, the bathrooms in hundred-year-old buildings may smell due to old plumbing. “But if the room reeks of old mop water and bleach, if more than one fruit fly dive bombs your drink in a sitting… or if you do in fact smell fermented food and you haven’t ordered any, you know what you should probably do,” CityPages.com said on its website.

8. Not-So-Friendly Staff

Source: Pixabay

If the staff isn’t happy to see you, doesn’t say hello when you walk in the door, and ignores you once you’ve been seated, it’s a sign that you’re in a bad restaurant. Yes, it could be that the staff is swamped. It happens–especially on very busy days/nights. But, what matters is if the staff shows sincerity. If they truly are swamped, someone will (or should) come up to you and apologize for keeping you waiting. If not then it’s likely that they just don’t care and don’t take their job seriously. It also means that management isn’t doing a good job running the restaurant, Michelle Stansbury, food blogger at Eat, Drink, Be SD, told Reader’s Digest.

And, last but not least, if no one says goodbye as you’re leaving, don’t make any plans to return to that establishment.