It seems the age of the anti-review has arrived as more and more restaurant owners are making a name for themselves, not by garnering great reviews online but by responding with direct criticism to the negative ones.
We’ve had a number of examples in recent months of restaurant owners who have decided to throw ‘the customer is always right’ philosophy in the bin and tell customers exactly what they think of them on sites like Yelp and Trip Advisor.
The latest owner to step into the game is Waseem Ahmed who runs the Shimla Cottage Indian restaurant in Scotland.
Ahmed, who really doesn’t take any prisoners, has replied to a number of negative reviews online, not by explaining the situation, by offering to put wrongs right or by apologising, instead, by openly attacking customers, telling them to put a brown bag over their head, and by calling them 'faceless' reviewers.
Speaking about the responses and complaints to Metro, Ahmed said: ‘People think they can write anything they want and restaurants will hide under a blanket. We admit if we get it wrong and have always apologised when we do which you can see from other reviews.
‘It’s a trend for people to just go on these sites and write negative things yet they were happy enough to eat the food when they’re here. Some people are downright rude and hostile and think it’s right to tarnish someone’s business.
‘One woman’s complaint was inevitable. She ordered a Korma and asked for chillies in it, which is just stupid. We obviously made an a*** out of her order but tried to fix it. She was just an idiot of a woman.’
After reading many of the reviews and responses, the main question for us seems to be, how does a restaurant survive with a 3-course lunch menu priced at just £3.50?
Below you can see some of the responses. Has this owner gone too far?
Even a Michelin restaurant has been involved in calling out customers on Tripadvisor.