Toronto neighborhood stands up for restaurant owner after unfair 2-star review


A Toronto restaurant owner who took to social media to vent her frustrations over a recent two-star review has the backing of her community.

Darlene Mitchell runs Leslieville’s restaurant, Greta Solomon’s, and recently posted on Facebook about her struggles at the restaurant and how ‘social media can’t wait to shake their ugly head and kick when they see someone fall’ .

“I received devastating news that my boss was leaving. I made the painful decision not to stay open for the 2 weeks notice he gave me, but to make the decision to pay for it instead on next payday,” Mitchell’s post read.

“It was obviously a very difficult decision to make because I can no longer open my restaurant. The reasons for this decision will remain private.”

She goes on to say that she contacted via email through their online booking system to let standing reservations know that they could not be honored for a period of time.

“I spent the week throwing for $$$$ food or finding a placement for it, consoling other members of my staff, interviewing other chefs and trying not to mentally break down myself -even. All of this at the same time as day 17 without cigarettes,” the post read.

“A few customers are very upset that we can’t honor their booking. So much so that they started giving us a 2 star review online. I can’t explain our heartbreak, it’s for me right now receive an email I got a 2 star review as I’m trying to find odd jobs around Greta for my remaining staff so I can pay for them.”

She continues to say that the people who come to her restaurant are very important to her, that she apologized and will continue to apologize for the cancellation of the reservation, and that she still feels very bad about ruining the couple’s anniversary.

Screenshot of a two-star Google review by Greta Solomon. Image via Google.

Mitchell seems to be referring to this two-star Google review posted earlier this week:

“The restaurant canceled our reservation on OpenTable 2 days before due to a shortage of staff in the kitchen. It was supposed to be our anniversary dinner and we couldn’t find another reservation on short notice in our neighborhood. Not even a call to cancel, just an OpenTable email. Disappointing.”

People rushed to Mitchell’s defense in the comments to his Facebook post, offering support and even quit smoking advice.

“We love you and your staff at Greta. From the food to the wine to the service, everything is beyond perfect,” one person wrote. “I’d give you 10 stars if I could. Looking forward to another fantastic evening at Greta’s when you reopen.”

“Leslieville got your back,” another person commented. “Greta Solomon’s is a focal point for our community, and by far the best place for every special meal. We can’t wait for you to reopen.”

“Some people think that your restaurant is some kind of public establishment and not your private business that you invest yourself in. But know this, for every ruthless thug who feels free to castigate you in public, there are 20 guests who appreciate and support you.. I had a restaurant for 5.5 years in Cabbagetown,” one person commented.

“The outpouring of support from customers and my industry peers was quite overwhelming and quite surprising. I’m still relieved because yes, it’s personal. I’m not looking for work, but if you have need a hand with something to help you through the transition, please contact us.”

If those kinds of comments are anything to go by, once Greta Solomon finds a new chef and reopens, it’s likely to be rave reviews from around the neighborhood.


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