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I want to be a student forever ... but onLy if I receive an aLLowance.

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CHOWKING Wanton Noodles with WIRE

Wednesday, March 25, 2009
If i zipped my mouth about my horrible experience before in one of the leading fast-food chains, this time I won't. Another awful experience has happened in another fast-food chain. The last time, I saw a cockroach in my drink, now it's a one inch wire from a strainer.

I got back from an event in Mandarin Hotel at about 2am in the morning when I stopped by Chowking MCU to eat. I ordered my favorite wanton noodles with iced tea. I even asked the cashier for spicy wanton noodles but they ran out of it. The cashier suggested to give me chili paste to add to my noodles. So be it.

While waiting for my order, I sent a message to my friend Abbie around 2:05am that I have arrived in our area but I'm dropping by Chowking because I was hungry. We actually wanted to eat at Chowking Cubao since I wanted some hot soup. But it was really late so the plan didn't push through. I headed on to MCU while she in Cubao. When my wanton noodles arrived, I mixed the chili paste in my soup. I sipped the soup first then the noodles. When I was on my third sip, I observed that there's a wire mixed in my soup. At first, I thought it was a staple wire so I took it out and was surprised to see how long the wire was.

It was a thin wire from a strainer! I immediately called for a staff while all of the store crew were currently eating together - the cashiers, the waiters, security guard and the store manager. One waiter approached me and I showed him the wire that was swimming in my soup. He immediately took the bowl from me and showed it to the store manager who was sitting with the crew at the farthest table. When the manager looked at my bowl, he stood up, took the bowl from the waiter and went straight to the kitchen.

I waited a long time for an explanation and an apology from the manager who was still in the kitchen. I know that he was going to replace what I ordered with a new one so I told them that I want to have it refunded instead of a replacement. I'm not going to eat another serving because I lost my appetite. So the cashier called the store manager and that was the first time that he approached me and said sorry for the incident. He also said and confirmed that the wire mixed in my soup was from a strainer in their kitchen. I told the manager "What if I didn't see the wire and I accidentally ate it? It was a long wire and it could've caused my death!" The manager could only utter sorry and offered to give me the wanton soup for replacement that is free of charge. I told him that I lost my appetite and could not take another wanton soup after the incident. So he gave me a refund.

The manager, who I felt wasn't sincere with his apology, didn't approach me immediately after looking at my soup with a one-inch wire but went straight to the kitchen instead. It just goes to show that he is covering up the incident so the food chain won't be liable for damages. A responsible store manager doesn't hide in the kitchen when a food incident occurs in his store. A responsible store manager has to approach the customer immediately after the incident to explain everything that happened and to answer questions from the customer. If the cashier didn't call for him, he would've stayed inside the kitchen. The store manager only showed up when the cashier called for him to have my payment refunded. He didn't even tell me his name. I found out later that his name was "TOPHER" when he used his ID to swipe and cancel the order in the POS. That was the only time he said sorry for the incident and didn't say it again.

I want these food chains to be responsible and alert in these situations. Food must be prepared with care. The quality of the food is more important than the quantity produced.

I also want to point out that these store managers don't know how to resolve the problem in an effective way. Customer service is an important factor in the food business. It's the customer who keep the business going. I hope these fast-food chain could learn a lesson or two from this incident.