The worst Yelp businesses

One of the things I do is look for entertaining Yelp reviews, specifically the bad ones. Very seldom will I find a business with +/- 50 reviews that averages fewer than 2 stars. The other day I found this Midas shop with a 1.5 star rating with 46 reviews.

Anyone else do this in their local area?


What’s puzzling is that even that Midas outlet had a 4 and a 5 star review. Either they give out token good service now and then to stay in business or they’re paying shills to go on Yelp.

Not Yelp, but pretty much every PC game that uses some minor form of copy protection, connectivity etc. gets slammed on Amazon. Because, you know, one minor feature destroys the whole game, which is critically acclaimed elsewhere. The console versions may not get the same treatment.

E.g. Grand Theft Auto IV:
Xbox 360 - 4 stars/5.0
Playstation 3 - 4.5 stars/5.0
PC - 2.5 stars/5.0
On Metacritic: PC 90/100; users 5.6/10

Diablo III PC:
Amazon - 2 stars/5.0
Metacritc - 88/100; users 3.8/10

Almost all the 1 stars are because they don’t like one feature (Social Club). It may suck, but it doesn’t make the worst game ever, and not 55% of the quality. And qualitatively, the PC versions are otherwise the same as the consoles, except with better graphics, controls, and customization.

With some business, people are super critical. With some, the business is just bad. I always look at the specific reviews, and prefer ones that actually mention multiple aspects of the business. With auto repair, sometimes people may not like the price, and don’t care that they got good service. Sometimes they have a legitimate gripe. Auto places are one I am particularly careful with. Good front office and customer service are nice, but I don’t need someone to wow me if they fix my car cheaply, effectively, and timely.

Yeah, I’ve noticed that…

I haven’t eaten there myself, but Pere Antoine in New Orleans is legendarily bad and after 90+ ratings holds only a 2-star Yelp rating. Bad restaurants don’t last in NOLA very long, but this one somehow has held on. Some of the reviews are hilarious, like this one:

If that “one minor feature” prevents me from installing or running the game properly, then yes, the game IS ruined. And this is something that I want to know about before I buy a game. In fact, this might be the determining factor in whether or not I’ll buy the game. I buy games in order to play GAMES, not to play “let’s try to install this sucker in less than 24 hours total”. Playing Civ is fun. Playing “tweak the computer in order to get Civ to run” is not fun. I don’t intend to buy another Civ game, unless I know for certain that I’m going to be able to install and run the game without any issues at all. None. That’s my tolerance level.

I don’t have problems installing other software, only games. So apparently the issue is that the game designers are not taking care that the copy protection doesn’t get in the way of installing and running the games. Game makers who want my repeat business will make sure that their games will run without the user having to tweak this and download that.

I used to work in a small agricultural town in the middle of nowhere. One restaurant had a 30 foot banner proclaiming they were the only 4 star restaurant in this shithole town. If you got up close, it cited Yelp with a date. Looking at Yelp they were indeed rated as 4 star restaurant on yelp on that date, with two 5 star reviews and one 2 star review. The five star reviewers only ever reviewed restaurants in that town, giving 5 stars at that restaurant and 1 star everywhere else. The two star reviewer had been all over the country and said the food was poor and the service was awkward and slow, but they had a decent selection of draft beer so he’d go 2 stars. Of course in the two years since that date the average had been brought down to about 2-1/2 stars.

I used to work in a restaurant/bar in the French Quarter, NOLA. our food was generally great, but we considered ourselves a bar with food; so yelp reviews from folks expecting “restaurant” service were great entertainment. I loved going through them once a week or so and remembering incidents these snooty SOB’s were yelping about. It’d be like “Oh, yeah! I remember this one! That bitch left in tears!” we still kept a 4 1/2 star rating with hundreds of reviews. I never consult Yelp when eciding to try any place.

Where did you work?

I’m confused as to why “restaurant” service and “bar with food” service should differ. I mean, if they were looking for a booth to sit at and you clearly didn’t have any, that’s one thing. But what possible difference can or should there be between someone taking your order and bringing your food in a “restaurant” vs. a “bar”?

Coop’s Place on Decatur.

The difference is you expect a “waiter” to kowtow & lick your shoes. “Customer is always right, no stupid questions, etc.” People will throw an attitude at restaurant waitstaff that would get kicked if they tried it with a French Quarter bartender; which is what they rapidly found out they were doing in this case. Also, bartenders will chat a bit more familiarly and expect to be treated like human beings. Sometimes friendly humor is taken wrong by folks who expect nothing but “yes sir, so sir.”
Example: A woman doesn’t like her white zin, wants something else. I tell her I can’t blame her, I don’t like it either. I can get her something else, but must charge for that because it is not faulty. She goes ballistic. Says she’s never been treated like that. I tell her she should get out more.

I found that one on Yelp within the week.

I love Coop’s. Never had a problem with the service, but I can see what you’re talking about. It does get recommended a lot, but most people don’t say it’s a bar/restaurant.

That was where the problem usually started. Folks would ask the locals where to eat, then get referred there without the caveats. They arrived thinking table cloth and hostess, found a dive with a few tables surrounding the bar.

I LOVE Coop’s! That rabbit jambalaya… Damn.

We had good service the night we were there but it wasn’t too busy. The place was dirty as hell though… the toilet and bathroom wall were both heavily splattered with blood. Just adds character.

Sounds about right. Those bathrooms got a lot of print in Yelp reviews. All of it terrible. And pretty accurate.

What Decatur Street bathroom isn’t?

Meh. Not seeing this as a bar vs. restaurant issue. Restaurants get their fair share of customers with entitlement issues, too. How much the staff can push back depends entirely on management, not how the venue is classified.

Fair enough. And I’m not sure how we would be technically classified. But in our minds we were Decatur Street bartenders who circumstance forced into also waiting tables.
We had one set of Tshirts made with the business name and the letters “RTFM.” when asked we explained the initials stood for “Read The, er…, Menu.”