“ Botanic Avenue, Belfast. Tel: 01232 207200 „
There are two reasons why anyone would visit The Other Place (Botanic Avenue): the food is actually quite nice and, most influentially, the staff is so astoundingly rude that you cannot take your eyes of them as they snap at customers, fly around the place in angry tempers and generally provide as much tension as one would assume would be the norm on Eastenders.
It is nice and it is reasonably priced. The paninis in particular are really delicious. They use excellent quality of panini bread, filling (mostly chicken based) and sauces. The prices are also quite reasonable, and do appeal to the students on a budget in the local area.
On my last visit, the waitress screamed (and actually screamed, not just spoke angrily) at a table for moving to a bigger table after she had taken the drinks order. Imagine the red faces of the couple in question who crawled back to their original table in shame. She then threatened a lady whose pram, God as my witness, blocked her way through the tables. The lady in question was so angry that she told the waitress she was a "Milly scumbeg who deserved to have her face kicked in" and left in a flurry, pram in tow. The waitresses are surly, unhelpful, arrogant, impolite and among the worst I have ever seen in my entire life. I often wonder how many tables arrive just to watch them storm up and down the small restaurant as though they were forced into working there.
Personally, as a silver service waitress myself, I find it as hilarious as I do disturbing. The decent food is no match for the appalling things the waiting staff are doing.
great place . food is value for money and very good menu. is bring your own and its so clean and freash it beats eating at home.
The other place on first glance looks dark and not very welcoming, but when you enter, the mad buzz and nice smells about the place beckon you in. The food is cheap and of good quality, the steaks in particular are great. I've had many a good fry/steak in here.
The one reason why I would think about going there again is that the staff have absolutely no manners, are grumpy, rude and dure every time I've been.
On Tuesday my boyfriend and I decided to go for a pre-shopping bite to eat and plumped for 'The Other Place' which seemed the kind of place you can drop by, get a nice meal in a pleasant atmosphere and be gone within the hour, appetite suitably appeased.
How wrong we were. I have NEVER in my life endured such appalling service. The waitress who 'served' us actually went out of her way to be rude to us, deliberately avoiding saying 'please' and 'thank you' and she did not smile once and even cut me off mid-sentence as I made a request. Fair enough, she may have a long day at work, but it takes no effort to smile or be nice, especially to the very people who are paying your wages!
When we were awaiting our meal (which took longer than it should have to arrive), a group of 4 studenty type boys came in and sat down. As she turned away, she wrinkled her nose and scowled in disgust at them. Just really, really bad service and this waitress singlehandedly created a negative atmosphere and ruined our enjoyment of our meal. My boyfriend and I barely said a word to each other throughout, we were quite uncomfortable as she made us feel like we shouldn't be there and we weren't wanted.
As for the meal itself, it was fairly decent, I had a chicken wrap which was more than substantial. One thing though, I don't get the whole 'chip-sharing' thing. Our orders both had chips included but they were put on a plate in the middle of the table which made it difficult as I like sauce on mine but my boyfriend doesn't. Are they trying to save washing-up?!
I was very disappointed with my experience at 'The Other Place', as someone who eats out quite often I'm afraid to say it is the only time I have not left a tip... that's how poor the service was. I certainly won't be going back again.
Yes, "The Other Place" in Belfast, is somewhere that can cause a lot of confusion when you are trying to arrange to meet somewhere for Lunch, imagine the conversation, "Where so you want to go to Lunch?" "mmm I don’t know" "What about the other place?" *look of confusion* "What other place?" "No, ‘The Other Place’, the restaurant" "oh yes! Why not!" Yes, I have had conversations like this, and they are quite amusing as long as you are not starving with Hunger! So where is "The Other Place"? Well, there’s actually 3 restaurants as part of this chain. That can make it even more confusing. All the restaurants are situated in the University Area of Belfast, Stranmillis Road, Lisburn Road and Botanic Avenue (the most popular). Each is basically the same, but there are a few differences in each place. I can only speak from experience of the Stranmillis Road and Botanic Avenue Restaurants. The basic Restaurant is designed to look quite Rustic, rough red bricked walls, walls covered in old style items (Old fashioned radios, Old pictures, washboards, jugs etc.). In all the restaurants there are booths (seats 4 people) and tables (for 2 or 4), with both smoking and non smoking sections. In the past, I have found the staff to be very helpful and friendly, but as with a lot of places in Belfast, recently, I have found that the newer staff (frequently what my brother calls Cladagh Queens - i.e. a female who tends wear a lot of the Cladagh jewellery) they have taken on are not so friendly or as concerned with customer care. The service you get in there largely depends on who is working there on that particular day, and who throws , I mean, hands a menu to you. The menu is quite varied, with a number of steak dishes, pasta dishes, some Mexican food, right down to plain old burger and c
hips. Breakfast times offers are Ulster Fries, bottomless cups of coffee (this also depends on who is working that day as to whether the "bottomless" part is true), and scones. A wide variety of reasonably price sandwiches are available throughout the day. Recently, they have started to serve alcohol, but this is still quite limited. They do have a "bring your own bottle" policy, which appeals to a lot of students. Out of the two I have visited, I prefer the one on Botanic Avenue. It has a better atmosphere, and is very student orientated, more so than the one on Stranmillis Road, which in my experience is more family orientated. Not that family orientated is bad, it’s just when you have spent the day working with children, who are quite frequently crying, you don’t want to spend your night out listening to the same, regardless of how much I adore children. If you do not like music loud, you may want to reconsider eating here. Because it is largely student orientated, the music can tend to be played quite loudly, but if it gets too loud you can ask them to turn it down a wee bit. The staff are generally better on Botanic Ave. in my experience, and it’s close to a lot of other student hang outs such as The Empire, and relatively close to the cinema. So what about the food? Well, in all the times I have visited there, I have enjoyed my meal - on the very odd occasion when I have left something on my plate, it’s been because I was full, not because there has been too much. All my friends are impressed by it, and they all have got very different tastes in food, so I think I’m safe in saying that it caters for most tastes. The menu changes from time to time, and there are Chef’s special meals, which are posted on the large blackboard that lines the wall, that surprisingly looks in the right place! At the moment, The Other Place is a great place
to eat, but as with all restaurants, things can change, and if they do, I will certainly update this op :).