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Nondoctor

Coopers Sparkling Ale

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So...

A question for all of you re: customer service.

Let's say that theoretically one was involved with a restaurant...

And that a customer claimed to have become sick after drinking a Cooper's Sparkling Ale in said restaurant ( a beer with a secondary fermentation in bottle).

(This is all theory mind)

*cough*

This customer called to complain about having been violently ill after consuming 2 of these beers (and that they knew that the source of their illness was specifically from those beers).

The restaurant responded by calling the LCBO lab and filing a report on behalf of the customer.

The LCBO QSA department were extremely helpful and passed on a record of this report to the restaurant which they then passed on to the customer.

The customer was still not satisfied.

Where do you think a restaurant should go from here?

Your thoughts would be much appreciated.


Edited by Nondoctor (log)

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OK. The customer isn't always right! But a satisfied customer can be a good ambassador. I see two options:

1. The situation cannot be redeemed - in which case you offer nothing (other than the LCBO lab report);

2. You make lemonade - a full apology, full meal (your choice on whether alcohol is included) and grovel! - You do this so that the customer will speak kindly of you (and you hope they are influential).

In my experience, half-way measures never work.

And I still tell people about my restaurant horror stories - 2 places in particular that I always counter-recommend - those who "done me wrong" many years ago.

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(Where's Fat Guy when we need him? )

I'm easily confused and not sure I understand completely. In this hypothetical, are we to assume that the lab report showed nothing wrong with the product? Or the opposite?

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I do not know of the legalities in Canada concerning all of this.

However, I have my doubts that it was actually the beer.

On the other hand, this is where some goodwill can go a long way, and is certainly cheaper than a retainer fee.

So, I would suggest calling the fellow, and apologizing that this happened at your restaurant. Offer him something worth more than the meal he had (say, a dinner for two) either at your restaurant, or if you have a partner restaurant, that, too.

But, make sure that it is something that will get him back in your door. If he doesn't use it, that's his problem. And, document what you did. If he wants to be an ass after you apologize and try to make it right, it's his problem.

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I react very badly to Duvel beer which I understand is a beer with a secondary fermentation in bottle and have vomitted after only having 2 of them. The reaction is so bad that my wife does not let me drink it anymore nor Chimay which caused the same thing. Ditto on the offer to make amends. "Fat Guy" Did you not work at Cravath as a litigator? Regardless of what caused this, and you may never know, there is probably enough to make waves. I am not in this area of law (I am a paper pusher lawyer not personal injury lawyer) but I am sure others who are might give the same advice.

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One of the most important things in owning a restaurant IMO, is PR/CS.

Do whatever it takes to make that guy happy, because any negative word of mouth can spiral in to something ugly.

Bend over backwards, give him what he wants.

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Yes... I suppose you are right.

Coopers even gives me an upset tummy (albeit after 20 or so).

The LCBO lab report stated that there had been no previous complaints regarding this product...

Ah well...

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