Fort Canning restaurant allegedly charged S$50 at dinner for bringing own cake, owner apologizes and clarifies policy


Fort Canning restaurant reportedly charges restaurant ‘cover charge’ for bringing food out

It is completely normal for restaurants to have policies that protect their interests. After all, they are running a business in a tough industry.

However, a restaurant was upset when it fell victim to a policy implemented by a restaurant in Fort Canning.

In a Google review, the restaurant claimed that the restaurant asked him to pay S$50 to bring his own cake for a birthday party.

Source: Google Maps

Hearing this, the client and the band he was with got angry and decided to take their money elsewhere.

The restaurant has since apologized for the experience and also clarified its policies in a response.

Fort Canning restaurant allegedly asked the restaurant to pay S$50 for bringing its own cake

On Wednesday, June 15, the restaurant in question left a scathing review for Le Jardin Restaurant on Google.

Source: Google Maps

In the lengthy review, he first claimed that the facility was one of the “worst places” he had ever set foot in.

It was presumably because of what he considered to be “absurd regulations” the restaurant allegedly imposed on him.

He explained that a group of them were there to celebrate a birthday and had called the restaurant before they arrived.

When they arrived, with a birthday cake in their hands, the restaurant staff reportedly told them they could not bring the cake.

Indeed, this goes directly against the restaurant’s ‘no outside food and drink’ policy.

Although this is a constant rule, the restaurant staff then offered a suggestion.

This suggestion would require diners to pay a cover charge of S$50 for the cake they brought.

The proposal was apparently frowned upon by diners who eventually left the restaurant.

In retrospect, the restaurant claimed that the whole problem could have been solved had Le Jardin suggested that they buy another cake from the restaurant as an exchange.

He ended the review by calling the restaurant out as they “didn’t care or care about their customers”.

The Fort Canning restaurant has a ‘no outside food’ policy

A day later, a user representing “Le Jardin Team” posted a concise response to the review.

In the response, the owner clarified four points that the restaurant raised in its review.

First, the owner shared that Le Jardin has a set policy regarding imported food from outside of their restaurants.

The restaurant had apparently adopted this policy “to allow” customers to taste La Jardin brand cakes from their own bakery.

From a business perspective, the owner hopes the restaurant will understand that such a policy is not “absurd and totally unprecedented”.

Second, the owner pointed out that there may have been a typo in the review, as the one-time cover charge offered was allegedly only S$20, not S$50 as suggested by the restaurant.

The owner added that diners had reserved an Earl Gray lavender cake from their bakery.

Citing Le Jardin’s ‘don’t say ‘no’ service DNA, the owner hinted that they had tried to reach a compromise – if diners paid for the cake they had reserved at the restaurant, they could enjoy the other cake they brought at no extra cost.

However, the owner alleged that this proposal was rejected by the restaurant.

Nonetheless, the owner of Le Jardin apologized for the unpleasant experience and offered to welcome diners with a cake from their bakery team.

I hope the policies will be clearer so everyone understands

From a business perspective, the Garden’s concerns and policies seem valid.

Judging from the review and the restaurant’s response, however, the problem may lie in communication, as the customer seemed unaware while the owner claimed he had already passed on the necessary information.

Whatever the truth, we hope both sides were able to resolve the matter peacefully.

As for the rest of us, we can take this as a lesson to do the necessary checks before deciding to bring our own food to any restaurant.

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Featured image adapted from Google Maps.


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