The owner of a tapas bar in the Midlands has hit back at a restaurant who said the food was like ‘someone came to Co-op and quickly cooked something’. The restaurant said they had eaten tapas in the UK and Spain and knew “it wasn’t authentic”.
They added they hadn’t paid and were hungry after dining at La Casita Bar Tapas on the High Street in Ironbridge, Shropshire last summer. The restaurant is a popular place to eat in Ironbridge – boasting a 4.0 rating on Tripadvisor.
It regularly receives rave reviews from diners – including one visitor last month who described it as “an incredible hidden gem”. But the only restaurant, identified as Dawn on the travel website, that visited it last year gave it a one-star rating in its review – describing it as “awful”.
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Her review read: “After reading the great reviews we were looking forward to some great food – how wrong were we. First we had bread with oil and balsamic vinegar.
“The bread was cold and a store bought sliced baguette. I ordered toast with cream cheese and ham. The bread was definitely not toast, but it was hard and cold. Crispy calamari was soggy calamari.
“I’ve eaten tapas in the UK and Spain and I know it wasn’t authentic. It’s like someone came to Co-op and cooked something quickly. We paid our drinks and left.”
But the restaurant decided to respond to the criticism, saying that in the end they “didn’t charge you for the food to avoid problems”. They added that they were sorry for the staff who diners had “treated in such an awful way”.
They also said diners didn’t leave after their meal – in fact, they ordered more cocktails and stayed for half an hour. La Casita Bar Tapas’ response said, “Oh my God! We’re not going to discuss your opinion of the food you had.
“You didn’t like it? It’s possible, of course. Although, speaking of quality complaints, it seems that you didn’t pay attention to the prices.
“If we had served you what you apparently expected, the prices would have been much higher. If we had served you Iberian ham instead of Serrano, you would have been unpleasantly surprised at the price.
“Let’s be honest and say it’s not true that you paid for the drinks and left after the food was served. You ordered more cocktails and drank them for half an hour.
“And when a bill came to your table, you were surprised that we were going to charge you for the drinks you had. Were you expecting free drinks for complaining about the food?
“We didn’t want to charge you for the food to avoid problems…, watching your behavior throughout the night. Anyone who was hungry would have left first, no doubt. We are sorry for our staff you have treated in such a horrible way.”
La Casita Bar Tapas, located in Ironbridge near Telford, regularly receives rave reviews on Tripadvisor. In February a diner said: “We had a fantastic evening of tapas at La Casita. The restaurant is a cozy place, with really friendly staff, we were with our 10 year old daughter and we all had a great time .
“The food was excellent (aubergine is highly recommended) and good value, and there is also a wide range of drinks. Thank you, we will definitely be returning to Ironbridge.”
Emma said: “We came to Ironbridge for one night last year but hadn’t booked anywhere for dinner. Walking around town we see this restaurant above another which, at first glance, may seem really disappointing.
“We looked at the menu which seemed quite small so decided to check out other reviews and were pleasantly surprised. We messaged via Facebook to reserve a table.
“On arrival it was clear that this was a traditional tapas restaurant, with good wine and a good atmosphere. The menu is not huge but is perfectly formed, with everything you can imagine.
“The food is amazing, it was like going on vacation to Spain for an hour. We would return to Ironbridge just for this restaurant! Highly recommend! Thank you.”
And another customer added: “Fantastic food, wine and atmosphere. Table by the window overlooking Ironbridge.
“Authentic tapas, wine and ambience. Full restaurant with one waitress but she did very well – to her credit. Pleasant meal and experience.”
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