Thursday, 6 February 2014

A Wong

When service fails

Service always has been one of the, if not the most important elements to the overall dining experience, it doesn't matter how good the food is, if the waiters were being stuffy, uninterested or rude, I would just not go back. Some restaurants, would as far as state that to have a successful run restaurant business, 70% is down to the service alone. The overall service level in London has always been of a high standard, I don't ever recall encountering a restaurant with outrageous and disgraceful service but there is always a first time right? Absolutely, and the award goes to A Wong, a Chinese restaurant in Victoria, London.


We booked in for 7.30pm but somehow the receptionist had us down for 7pm and gave our table away when we arrived at 7.40pm, as I asked how come they got my booking wrong and shouldn't they have a standard booking system like most other restaurants in London, to call in the day before to confirm time and booking etc. The reception's ridiculous answer was:"It is not our responsibility, this is your own problem." I was amazed how rude she was, having a little debate with her before finally getting a table, but I wished I had just have left in the first place as the worst was yet to come....

dry braised salt and pepper tiger prawn
braised duck cob with peach and pickled ginger

After placing our orders, we waited for over 30 minute and still no sign of our food, and when I checked with the waiter, he checked for us but never returned to explain what was happening, another 10 minutes gone and the food finally arrived, so it seems like he had forgotten our orders  but not willing to admit it at the same time. We ate in frustration while through the whole dinner, not one single waiter bothered to approach to check on us, never once did they help us with topping our wine and tea, all the staff treated us like 3rd class citizens and showed no interest whatsoever.

dong Po slow braised pork belly and fried rice
Scotch beef fried noodle

So what about the food? Some interesting dishes such as the glazed monk fish cheeks with uyghur pomegranate salad, the monk fish was well cooked, very moist with good depth of meaty flavours and a hint of fruity aromas. Prawn stuffed chicken wings with black bean sauce was also decent, a pretty modern technique from China of stuffing prawns toward the end of the wings, it had a multilayer of textures and worked pretty well together with the black bean sauces. And the bad? Braised duck cob with peach and pickled ginger was overwhelming with saltness, I failed to taste the peachy flavour at all. Barbecued lamb with cumin, chilli and sesame was even worse, the cumin dominated everything, far too strong and too much as I felt like eating powder which was very unpleasant.  

glazed monk fish cheeks
prawn stuffed chicken wings with black bean sauce
barbecued lamb with cumin, chilli and sesame
The food was over priced, all the dishes were tapa sizes and only enough for one person, the fried beef noodles was 50% more expensive than most restaurants in China Town but 50% smaller in portion at the same time, and frankly enough, quality wise it wasn't much different. What can I say? It was the most painful dining out experience I've ever encountered, the staff were rude and unfriendly to say the least, the joke was when I asked for the service charge to be removed from the bill, the waiter didn't even bother to asked what was the problem which pretty much summed up their unprofessional manner and attitude.

Food 3 (out of 10)
Service 0
Ambience 2
Value 1

£35 per head with tea

70 Wilton Rd, Victoria, London SW1V 1DE

A. Wong on Urbanspoon
Square Meal


  1. That's pretty bad.

    Just read a review from LondonEater - and it seems he had a very different experience, so it's an interesting one!

    1. Hi Manasi, it was a nightmare for me:( I decided to give a visit to A Wong due to it has a few good reviews about it.... Well if you do go let me know about your experience, maybe I happened to visit on an off day.

  2. I completely agree that service is such a key part of the dining experience. Luckily i've had really good experiences in London, however because of that I wouldn't ever return to a restaurant that gave terrible service just because i know there's so many other places I could go.

    Thanks for posting your honest review and i hope AWong read the article and sort out their terrible service.


    Ps Hope you are doing well :)