Has a bad experience stopped you from eating at a certain restaurant ever again?

Inspiring thread. I believe I’ve been on record before about Taco Hell invariably giving me gastritis just about every single time I went there, so it’s now off my list for good (esp. since in my neighborhood there is a Moe’s 300 yards away from it, and they at least have never given me issues).

I had a couple meals from Long John Silvers back in the early 90s. They were dripping grease and there were major mistakes in the orders. Never returned.

I have to get steak or chicken instead of ground beef at Taco Bell. They changed their formula awhile back (now with Real Meat!™), I don’t know if it’s better in that respect. Otherwise, I don’t go to places like McDonald’s, but it’s more personal revulsion than any specific reason. But I remember refrigerating a burger from there when I was a kid, and it turned gray to my memory.

My wife and I avoid Taco Bell. We hit the drive thru on the way out of town for a seven hour drive. Four hours later the food poisoning hit her and she ended up puking at the side of the road and sitting on baby diapers until we could make it to the nearest county hospital to wash up and wait it out. Our first child was a couple months old at the time, and since we weren’t giving her formula, I had to do whatever I could to keep the baby calm until my wife could sit up without puking long enough to nurse.

The incident, and a couple later trips that included morning sickness gave her a fear of traveling despite having been a weekly business traveler in a previous job. It was also one of the stresses that led to a struggle with panic attacks for a few years.

So, while fresh-mex places like Baja Fresh are fine, fast food Mexican is no longer an option.

Serious food poisoning from a burrito joint (not Taco Bell) in Chicago - after I spent the better part of 24 hours on and off the john not sure whether I was going to spew diarrhea or puke at any given moment (thank goodness for solid plastic bathroom wastebaskets), I wasn’t inclined to give them a second chance.

And not quite the same “bad experience” concept, but I just had my second chance blown at an Italian restaurant in a nearby suburb - my previous meal with them was so-so, but they were seriously behind due to staffing issues, and we were feeling generous. This time, I saw no evident problems, and my pasta dish came out both horrendously oversauced and bland as hell. I even had my husband try it just to make sure I wasn’t coming down with a cold, and he was shocked at how a dish drowning in tomato sauce could actually be utterly without flavor. We tipped the waiter well afterwards; it wasn’t his fault. It’s just annoying because we were already eating lunch late, I was hungry, and I came away from lunch having eaten two pieces of bread and a glass of wine because I didn’t want to wait for anything else. I won’t bother going back there.

I refuse to eat at Applebee’s. Not because of anything so dramatic as food poisoning, but rather it’s that I’ve never had a GOOD experience there. Even when the expectations are only those of chain-casual food, I have been disappointed on every occasion and at every Applebee’s I’ve ever been to. Nothing has ever been worth the money or time.

And it’s not like I’m a snob–I love Friday’s, Bennigan’s, Chili’s and all the rest. Applebee’s just sucks.

I can’t eat at Hardees.

About ten years ago I was on a road trip and we stopped for lunch at one. I was the first to hit the ladies’ room. And oh… oh my.

Imagine someone had been constipated for about three weeks.

Then drank one of those pre-colonoscopy shakes that empty you out from top to bottom.

Then stayed in the ladies’ room for the whoooooooole of the emptying.

There were two toilets in the bathroom. The first one to be used was literally full to the brim. Then the person had moved to the second one, spewing shit along the way, and mostly filled it too.

I’m never going to Hardees ever again. I don’t care that it’s not their fault.

Bad service is an on-topic reason, by the way.

Farmer Boys. Okay, I ate there twice–once it was a lackluster breakfast, and I gave them a second chance. No improvement.


My wife and I will no longer eat at a certain local diner after they served her a liver which was seasoned with thyme, which she is quite allergic to. Merely serving her something with thyme was not that bad, it’s a danger of eating anything she hasn’t tried before when eating out, but the server insisted that the liver did not have thyme or any other herbs on it. After my wife started eating the liver and began reacting to it, we complained to the server, who brought the manager our who swore up and down that there was no thyme on the liver. This despite the strong flavor of thyme and the fact that on closer inspection we could see bits of thyme on the liver. We’ll never eat there again.

I have totally given up any sort of fast food. I don’t care if it is McDeath, Subway or Pizza of any chain or independant vendor.

I have no idea what the fuck is wrong, but McDonalds, Burger King, Wendys, it doesn’t matter the chain, the food gives me the shits within 20 minutes, and I keep shitting for several hours until all that is coming out is the water I drink to keep dehydration at bay. I could use it for a pre-colonoscopy bowel prep.

Near as we can figure, it is something to do with canola oil. If I do canola oil or products made with canola at home, I spend several hours of quality time crapping. Last road trip this past Feb/March and early April I did my normal oatmeal breakfast by making it in the hotel room from instant, made sandwiches from stuff we bought ourselves and kept in coolers and in room fridges from brands we KNOW I can eat safely, and dinners varied from either sandwiches we made, or restaurants with lots of care choosing what to eat [typically for me salads with our own homemade dressing] Thankfully we avoided digestive issues with the exception of a couple restaurants that I tried some of mrAru’s dinner.

Chili’s. I have an iron stomach and can name exactly two times that I had any type of food poisoning. One was a non-franchise Mexican restaurant where I spent several desperate minutes at the only bathroom only moments after finishing my burrito. The second was Chili’s. I woke up early the next morning with what felt like a heavy brick in my stomach. Since I rarely puke - usually alcohol related and not even on a yearly basis - I carried on with my activities which included the (dog) related lessons I was giving that morning. Feeling progressively worse, I went up to the property owner’s house to use the phone so I could cancel the rest of my lessons. I didn’t even get “Can I use your phone?” out before I had projectile vomiting all over her kitchen. Awesome. Won’t be going any where near that place again.

Denny’s. Greasy eggs, undercooked bacon, lukewarm coffee, and the magical disappearing waitress. When I voiced my complaints to the cashier, she said “Oh, really?” and charged me for the meal. Fuck Dennys.

Chipotle. I had one of my pre-gastric-bypass last meals there and got the worst case of food poisoning I’ve ever had…both ends going at once. Even if I was able to eat their huge burritos again I wouldn’t set foot in one…the memory is still too painful. And it’s really no surprise…my daughter had briefly worked at one of their locations during flu season a few years previously and when she got ill and tried to call in sick, she was told that their policy was if you called off sick in the first 30 days, they would let you go…even if you had a doctor’s note. So because they all needed the job, everyone came in to work sick and the thing got passed through the entire staff.

Also McDonald’s, after getting a gristly. . .thing in a Chicken McGaggit. And a deli in Anchorage, after biting into the sandwich and coming up with the plastic closer thingy from the bread bag. They comped the meal, but no mas.

I thought getting diaarhea from Taco Bell was part of the experience?

Second Denny’s. I ate there for the first and last time last year after getting off a plane. It was 9:30pm and it was the only thing within walking distance of the hotel, so we went over for a late dinner.

My dad had some kind of sandwich that came with fries and couldn’t finish them. I indicated that I’d like some, so he picked up his plate to pass it to me. . .revealing that there had been an old half-chewed hamburger patty stuck to the underside of the plate the entire time.

None of us had ordered a burger. I don’t know how the hell it got on there, maybe being stacked on some dirty dish in the kitchen. But we were so disgusted that nobody ate another bite. And we’re never going back, not if it’s the last restaurant on Earth. Next time I’ll just eat Chips Ahoy out of the vending machine.

Ditto. Raw sausage and they were pissed that I wanted then cooked. It’s not like Dennys is a go-to restaurant anyways.

I have individual locations on my ‘no’ list, but the only chain with a blanket boycott that I can think of is Outback. Been there two or three times, consistently awful food & service. Maybe it was just a particular franchise on a particular day & we got unlucky; but there are plenty of good restaurants out there, I don’t feel compelled to give them any more chances …

They used to do a passable breakfast many years ago, and I was going on that memory when I stopped in there. I don’t know how they stay in business nowadays.