Ron Gage and his partner Henry McKinnon were enjoying a romantic evening at their favorite steakhouse when a waiter told them sharing a dessert “doesn’t go with the ambiance” at the restaurant. The encounter took place last Thursday at ‘The Prime Rib’, one of D.C.’s most popular restaurants.
Gage recounts the evening: “When it came time for dessert, we asked for one sundae with two spoons. [Our server] said he would bring it in two separate dishes. He said ‘It wouldn’t look right with two gentlemen eating out of the same sundae. It doesn’t go with the ambiance of the restaurant.’ ”
According to The Washington Post, the couple was outraged by the incident, but didn’t bring the incident to the attention of the restaurant’s management that evening.
“We were speechless, we nodded,” Gage said. “We weren’t expecting it.”
Stunned, they kept their conversation with the server to a minimum for the rest of the meal, and tipped him 15 percent — they usually tip 20 — and left the restaurant without addressing it with a manager.
“I’m kind of embarrassed to say we didn’t say anything,” McKinnon said. “It just took us back to such a shameful place, in a way.”
But after they had slept on it, they were angry about the encounter and posted about it on Facebook and Yelp.
When contacted by The Washington Post, the Prime Rib’s general manager, James MacLeod, said he was still trying to piece together the situation and hadn’t had a chance to speak to the server in depth yet.
“The waiter in question is Bulgarian, and he does speak four different languages,” said MacLeod, noting that English is not the server’s first language. “I am not sure if he got confused as to what he was saying, or how he was saying it.”
It’s still unclear if any action was taken against the waiter.