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At The Rail Pavilion

267 Union Ave
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

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3 reviews from our community

For the past 10 years a group of our friends hold a reunion at Saratoga, in August to go to the races. We have been reserving two tables “At the Rail”.for our friends that travel from Utah, Florida, Conn., Nj and NY .We have seen a steady decline in the substandard food quality at the buffet that is offered. Two years ago you only served Asian cuisine, last year you did not have the much sought after omelet,you chose to serve pasta instead, The quality of food is inedible. I would expect that a place with the repute of the NYRA would pay more attention to culinary fare. False advertising in that it states soda, tea & coffee is included. We were charged for soda and WATER. Totally ridiculous.

My husband and I go to the Belmont Park (NYRA)race tract every year for Father’s Day. The buffet served there is of high quality. The selection is phenomenal a huge selection of sea food, salads, carving stations, pasta and delectable desserts. The food served at this NYRA Inc. run facility puts Saratoga to shame. All this at a fraction of the cost at Saratoga. $130.pp this year is completely unacceptable.
Our group is looking for another alternative

The benefit of quality food is that customers would want to return. The ambiance is not what it used to be at “On the Rail” every year there are noticeably more empty tables. People we used to see year after year are no longer in attendance.

We

To Whom It May Concern:

This letter is being sent to inform you that American Express has been instructed to stop all charges incurred at your establishment on Wednesday, August 30th and the veritable reasons justifying such an action.

As an experienced restaurateur with a successful catering business, I was very clear and specific when I booked this company function as to the purpose of my event and my expectations. I am not only disgusted by the entire "catering experience" as well as embarrassed that my employees left starved and disappointed, but am more so outraged by the unprofessional and crafty practices of some of your beverage staff. The experience at your facility was disorganized, disappointing, and dishonest, to say the least. Let me annotate the reasons for my allegations:

1. Disorganized:
No one seemed to know what to do or the reasons for our attendance, despite the fact that I called personally to make the reservation and explain in detail the purpose of the event and detail my expectations. I was told not to be concerned and that the entire event would be flawless. Flawed is what it was!

2. Disappointing & Misrepresented:
The buffet food was inedible! I was told it was a grand "BBQ buffet"- What is the definition of BBQ?

Barbecue a noun
bar·be·cue variants: or less commonly

Definition of barbecue
i. a large animal (such as a steer) roasted whole, or split over an open fire, or a fire in a pit or smoked: barbecued food eat barbecue
ii. a social gathering especially in the open air at which barbecued food is eaten
iii. an often portable fireplace over which meat and fish are roasted
“Barbecued” adjective -bar·be·cued \?bär-bi-?kyüd\
1. cooked on a barbecue : roasted or broiled over hot coals or an open fire.

What was served was poor quality institutional prepared items "doctored" with sauces to ostensibly try to make flavorful. NOTHING was "Fire touched" but unfortunately much was "Finger touched. "The staff utilized unsanitary serving techniques. Buffet attendants did not wear gloves. I watched them take white- steamed or boiled chicken parts, from basting pans, barehanded, and then put those pieces directly into a buffet chaffing dish. And then the real culinary surprise, they poured BBQ sauce from a major food distributor’s container onto the chicken while people including me were standing on the line. Talk about health code violations!! Your staff wore no gloves and used incorrect food holding temperatures. You are lucky you did not kill someone! Then they had the nerve to label that dish, “BBQ chicken”.

Another dish misrepresentation was the "Cuban flavored beans"-- a #10 can of black beans basting in the black water used to pack the beans in the can. The only spice added to the can’s "bean packing water" was black pepper! Not only was that not Cuban, it was not edible. The salads were all pre-packed from a major food distributor and were limp, not fresh and tasted awful. We did not need to eat here. I gladly would have taken my staff to a restaurant, and then the track or had lunch catered. We were baited and lied to by your salespeople looking to “book a party”.

I am enraged. I want to tell everyone I know how disgusting the food is at your establishment---unsanitary food preparation, disorganized service and distasteful, unappealing misrepresented and nauseating fare. We are in the restaurant business---did you really think you could fool professionals and expect us to eat this crap?

My employees and I were so excited to spend the day at your establishment. We were buoyant from all the great promises made when we first engaged you. But, we all left hungry and consequently disgruntled. A company outing that was sabotaged by your false representations.

4. Dishonest:
Whenever a drink was ordered, the server intentionally doubled and tripled the order in an apparent attempt to fraudulently boost the liquor bill.
A few examples:
--One employee ordered a glass of wine and the bartender brought a bottle, even though he was advised that was not what was ordered;
--Another ordered a bottle of beer, and a six-pack in a bucket of ice was given, and charged, even though only one beer was ordered;
--One Sambuca was ordered, but four Sambuca’s, were poured and charged, even though only one was requested (I actually sent one back and the bartender said "not to worry about it"- but it was still on the tab at the end).

When it was time to leave, the server brought me the final tab, I looked at it and asked if there was a mistake. I was not being sarcastic, but really believed he brought me the incorrect bill, as there were other corporate events going on at the same time as ours and I knew I only had 12 adults and one minor. the server said, "no this is your tab, your group really drank a lot", I was very taken back, and then apprised the server of his actions and that I felt his intentions were suspect, He had the audacity to get haughty and rude and to tell me how he has been working here for years and never had a problem. If this were true, please explain to me how, someone working there for years, serves only ten adults, and one minor but rang up a $1,300.00 bar tab? Did everyone imbibe over $130 each on average? I don’t think so,
A. They would have died of alcohol poisoning, and;
B. The server, who self-proclaimed “worked here for years and never had a problem”, should be put in jail! He overserved alcohol to everyone! That being said, perhaps not only American Express should be notified, but the NYS liquor authority as well! How dare your staff engage in such devious and unethical practices? Your bartenders continued to over serve, and ring in beverages not ordered in an attempt to fraudulently ring up our tab.

I am sorry but you need to know what is going on and be informed, I will not pay for the buffet which was misrepresented, unsanitary and a disgrace, nor the inflated liquor bill (already in dispute with American Express), grossly illegitimately padded with drinks not ordered nor a service fee given the disorganized, unprofessional and unethical practices. Your establishment should be ashamed!
Respectfully:
Joe Fierro

Never again. Use to be a tradition of our family. Price is now over $100 and they wish to
feed you salads and sandwiches. Plus jeans and shorts allowed.


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