I’m Old. Happy Birthday to Me!

I hate being negative on this blog, but considering the events of my 23rd birthday I feel that it is appropriate to let everyone know how disappointing of an establishment Steam and Rye is.

Absolutely disappointed with my night out at Steam and Rye. I had pre-booked for a party of 16 for my 23rd birthday. We had a table for 8:30PM and got in with relative ease, everyone was seated and the food came, drinks ordered, etc.

The food was mediocre. It definitely wasn’t worth the £35 we paid. Our problems started when we were told our table was ready downstairs. Prior to coming, I had put down a £100 deposit for their Beamish Bonanza package: drinks, shots, props, doughnuts, etc. Sounded amazing on the website! Unfortunately, much to my surprise they had redeemed the £100 against the food bill instead!

We were not made aware of this, and we paid the full price of the meal including drinks we had ordered AND service charge. So how do we get told our £100 had been redeemed when we paid the full amount? My boyfriend and another friend’s boyfriend also paid by cash, which was mysteriously unaccounted for! We specifically told the waiter we had cash, and he said he would take the card payments first. He went around and took all the card payments, and the rest was £70 cash. Apparently because it wasn’t on the receipt, it didn’t count and apparently WE owed THEM money! How does that make any sense? There were witnesses who saw the cash being put on the table/the waiter taking it. Of course, the waiter had conveniently gone home when we asked them to talk to him about this.

We added all the card amounts and cash and it came up to over £800, but they kept trying to say that we only paid over £700 because the deposit was redeemed. NO IT WAS NOT. My friend calculated it, the waitress calculated it and then later tried to backtrack and say that she just saw the price my friend had given. Whatever.

Apparently, the only thing they could do was redeem the ‘missing’ £50 against the birthday package. I’m very annoyed because apparently they should have asked whether I wanted the deposit redeemed against the package or the dinner, when I specifically said on the phone the £100 was for the package. The waitress kept trying to say that it would have worked out the same, but how does that work when we paid service charge which was £99 and she tried to say that the deposit covered the service charge. But if we paid the service charge, we paid the full amount. Right?!

In the end, the ‘missing’ £50 was used to get a bottle of white wine and Prosecco. The night didn’t end too badly but considering everything that had happened before, it wasn’t that great. When the bill comes up over £800 for 16 people then I expect 5 star service. I did not receive that. The manager was extremely rude and kept raising his voice, even when we were trying to calmly explain we didn’t owe him anything and the cash situation.

I’ll admit the complimentary Five Dollar Shake I was given for my birthday was lovely, but I will definitely NOT be coming here again.

Again: awful staff who are all too happy take your money, but when you raise a complaint they will fight you on it. Shouting at your customers is not how you get them to come back.

-10000000 stars.

My friends also encountered blatant racism upon arriving at Steam and Rye.

My first issue with Steam and Rye: ugly, blatant racism. There were two black guys in our party, the rest white. The white guys, myself included, were politely welcomed in, whereas the two black guys were treated with a general air of suspicion and asked if they were with the rest of the party. Not a great start, if I’m honest.

I managed to end the night on a drunk note, which is always better than on an angry one. Thank you to my wonderful boyfriend, best friend and friends for making my birthday marginally better. You’re all loved ❤


  • Tara

    Holy crap. I’m so sorry you had to deal with that BS on your birthday! I so do not blame you for not wanting to back there. Heck, I certainly wouldn’t! And they being openly racist = BAD CALL. I would have been super pissed!

    Still, aside from that horrendous experience, let me wish you a belated Happy Birthday! I hope your 23rd year treats you well! ^^

    • Chynna

      I wasn’t actually there when the racism occurred, but I was absolutely mortified when my friends told me. If only I had known beforehand what this place was like, I would have avoided it like fire!

      Thank you, Tara <3

  • Cat

    Sorry that you had to deal with so many problems with the restaurant on your birthday 🙁 That’s too bad the food wasn’t worth the money, and the people there sound dishonest and rude! I can’t believe the cash went missing, and that they didn’t handle the deposit properly. I would be so annoyed and frustrated.

    I hope you still had fun with your friends though! Happy birthday!

    • Chynna

      I still can’t believe that people taking money and thinking they won’t get noticed is still a thing! A room full of 16 people, of course the missing cash is going to be noticed, especially when they ALL see the waiter taking the money. Ridiculous the way they handled the situation D:

      Thank you and I did! x

  • Amy

    Wow, that’s an awful place. I can’t believe they weren’t organised enough to deal with money properly – as if they publicly shouted at you as well. Very unprofessional. I hope you kicked off enough to let everyone in there know how bad it was. And £800 for racism is ridiculous.

    I still sometimes get watched cautiously in expensive places cos I look young. Just because they assume you’ll dine and dash or cause trouble. It’s just rude when you”re paying so much money.

    Hapoy birthday anyway – hope the rest of it was enjoyable!

    • Chynna

      Definitely was an awful place! At least you know when you come back to London, to never EVER visit this place. I’ve left reviews on their TripAdvisor, as well, and sent an email of complaint. My friends have also left reviews of how bad their service was. I have also sent them a formal letter of complaint through post, as they haven’t replied to my email or any of the reviews. I really hope I get my money back!

      Thank you, Amy. I had an enjoyable rest the night 🙂 <3

  • Michelle

    I’m sorry you had so much trouble 🙁 But happy belated birthday. Great pictures nonetheless. I’m glad you love the picture of Marley. I had fun shooting it. Marley is a natural model, I’m telling you. XD

    • Chynna

      Definitely sucks! However, the rest of the evening was made better by friends and boyfriend 😀

      Marley is the best! x

  • Nancy

    Happy belated birthday, cutie pie!!! I’m sorry to hear that the place you went to wasn’t all that great. It’s so bad when restaurants doesn’t know how to keep tab on what people paid for and everything. This place needs to get their management and organizing strategies on check! At least you still made the best out of it the best you could.

    You and your drinks (plus bae and bff) look awesome ;).

    Enjoy and shots shots shots shots sha shots!

    • Chynna

      Thank you, Nance! They need to give their staff and management customer service training ASAP. The way we were treated appalled me!

  • Uglyfish

    Happy belated birthday, but gosh! What terrible service, how rude and unprofessional of the waiters there. I’m sorry that you had to experience that – and the racism? Disgusting! Still, despite their behaviour i hope you and your friends still managed to enjoy your birthday celebrations!

    • Chynna

      Thank you 😀 I did manage to enjoy the rest of my celebration, thank God. Can’t let stupid people ruin my day!

  • Georgie

    I am sorry you had such a bad experience for your birthday bash! 🙁 Sometimes bad service can be balanced out with good food but it looks like that couldn’t even make up for it. It’s a shame everything was also not worth the money and you were treated rudely. In this situation I would also agree that if someone makes a mistake they should not blame the customer, and even if the customer was wrong they should explain nicely. It’s these people’s jobs to provide good service and if they can’t do that… definitely don’t come back. I hope you left a bad review on Yelp or something. 😀

    Happy belated birthday and I am glad you had your better half with you, at least! <3

    • Chynna

      I left bad reviews on Facebook AND TripAdvisor, as did my friends 🙂 Thank you for your comment, I definitely agree with everything you said!

      Thank you <3

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