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Old Country Buffet, absolutely disgusting

Posted Mon October 22, 2007 10:59 am, by Jennifer B. written to Old Country Buffet

My family recently made a visit to the Old Country Buffet, in Deptford, N.J. We usually visit the one in Mays Landing, but happened to be in that particular area and knew the kids loved it there.
When we arrived at the front desk to pay for our meal, the man kept calling our children "dudes" and telling them he needed to know their ages. I explained to the gentleman that my one son was 2 and my other son was 5. My two-year old obviously couldn't speak for himself. The gentleman pays no mind to me and turns and asks my five-year old how old they both are. Of course, my 5-year old tells them 2 and 5. But I was quite offended that this man wouldn't listen to the mother of the children and would go above and beyond to ask my children, after I had just told him, as if I was a liar.
We were told to seat ourselves and found the only "semi-clean" booth in the restaurant. There was leftover food one the tabletop. Yet, it wasn't as bad as the others. We stopped and asked one of the waitresses/bus person if they could wipe it down because we would like to sit there. It turns out the woman had used a washcloth obviously filled with old dishwater. The table reeked our entire visit!
Our boys were quite hungry and we had just paid almost 30 dollars for the meal, so we figured we'd just eat and leave as fast as possible.
We go to the buffet and the food looks like it has been sitting out all day. Nothing has been restocked, or replaced. I understand our visit wasn't until 8 p.m. but, there were still customers coming in paying for full meals ... my family included.
Our sons wanted the pizza they had out, so they each got a piece. They also grabbed some of the few french fries they had left. After they ate that... one piece of pizza and some french fries ... they wanted to go back and get another piece of pizza. We waited a 1/2 hour for new pizza to come out. It never came. I went up to ask an employee if they would be getting any more pizza, or any of the other 'child friendly' foods out and couldn't find anyone! I look over and what I'm assuming was 3/4 of the wait staff is sitting down eating their dinners! I finally found an employee that was "willing" to help me and was told "WHAT YOU SEE IS WHAT YOU GET." What I see is what I get? Good Lord!! This place was pathetic! I don't even want to get into the quality of the adult food that had been sitting out for quite some time. There were no clean utensils or plates. Every time you wanted a fork, you would have to walk all the way to the salad section, and pick up a fork out of the container that felt like it had been used and stuck back in there. There was dried food on every plate. Absolutely horrendous. None of the food was restocked. If you were looking for taco meat, you saw the dried residue of taco sauce with maybe a shriveled up piece of hamburger meat stuck to it. I guess what I saw is what I got for 30 dollars.
There was soda spilled on the floor causing your feet to stick as you walked away from the drink fountain. The glasses were as clean as the plates and forks. We had to beg to get our dishes cleaned off the table. I'm still in complete disbelief. Even our children kept asking why the restaurant was so dirty.
God forbid if you had to use the bathroom. There was urine all over the floors (and walls!!!) of the men's bathroom complete with ice cream cones that had been dropped on the floor and peed on. My husband went in there with our 5-year old to use the bathroom and was completely taken back. When he came back out, I didn't believe him and sent him back in with our digital camera. Unbelievable!! I have the pictures and would love to send them to you. The women's bathroom was just as disgusting.
The boys had really wanted ice cream, so I went to the ice cream bar to put some soft serve in a bowl with some sprinkles. I couldn't believe my eyes! There were overturned ice cream cones, where someone had decided after they made their ice cream that they didn't want it anymore and left it upside down on the machine to melt and run down the side. The entire bar was covered with what was left of the toppings. It was all over the floor. There were no toppings even left ~ except what was spread on the counter and on the floor. Unbelievable, I was flabbergasted. I went to ask a manager about the situation, and again, there was no employee to be found. I took pictures of this as well, and would like to send them to the company. I am quite tempted to call the Board of Health for Gloucester County. Not only is this not a suitable environment to eat in, it is also an unsafe work place. Disgusting.
I did see an employee as we were leaving ~ she was closing a section of tables and chatting on her cell phone. Nice.
Not only will my family and I NEVER eat at this restaurant again, I expect a full reimbursement for the 27.37 I spent on this foul dining experience. Yes, I will likely tell others about this restaurant, and it will not be a recommendation. We will continue to dine at the Mays Landing location. At least it is clean, and we won't have to worry about food poisoning from the food.
Obviously, the employees at this establishment need guidance and management. Please let me know an e-mail address where I may send these photographs to.


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by Gino Posted Mon October 22, 2007 @ 11:39 PM

I agree with all posts so far. I set foot in one of these
establishments once, took one look around, and made a u turn, never to
even consider going near again. Not saying Buffet can't be done well,
Shoney's and other companies just seem to do it better and for the
same amount of money.
I thought the same thing about the worker's interacting with the kids
while I read it as well.


Q-Cumber's is an awesome buffet! by RedAppleswRazors Tue October 23, 2007 @ 10:34 AM

A little evil now and then is ok, they really DO have an awesome buffet! n/t by Gino Tue October 23, 2007 @ 10:42 PM

by DragonflygrrlTheGreat Posted Mon October 22, 2007 @ 11:02 PM

Red is right (gee, I've been saying that a lot today, she must have
been on bloglines earlier). If this place was as bad as you say it
was you should alert the Health Department. Honestly, if you felt
that you needed to worry about food poisoning, why on earth did you
eat the food?

The only other thing I'll comment on is the waiter's interactions with
your kids. I really think he was trying to be nice to them, maybe
even make them smile and chat a bit. The problem is that when people
who aren't good at talking to kids try it, the results can be a bit
odd. But I don't think he meant any disrespect to you at all.


by RedheadWGlasses Posted Mon October 22, 2007 @ 3:56 PM

Oh, and if you're so concerned about food safety, I suggest you file a
complaint with the board of health yourself and include copies of the
pictures as well.

And your time to request a refund was when you were at the restaurant,
not after the fact, days (or longer) later.


by RedheadWGlasses Posted Mon October 22, 2007 @ 12:19 PM

I don't even need to read the complaint. The title is 100% accurate.
Par for the course at a bottom-of-the-barrell, low-cost,
feed-the-masses buffet. No surprises there.


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