How to: write a service letter for a restaurant (negative)

Hi everyone! So I already showed you guys how to write a positive service letter for a hotel, so here are steps to writing a negative service letter now for a restaurant. Remember, this template can be used for hotels and restaurants!

Here is a quick reminder again!

Finding the right letter format

If you go on Microsoft Word there are many templates you can use, the most common is the business letter

Summary of Experience

In the first paragraph, give an overview of your negative experience at the restaurant.  Also, give a thesis statement of what you will be talking about in the rest of your letter. For example if you had a negative experience at the restaurant break it down to key components that made your experience negative.

Go into detail

Everything HAS TO BE in detail. You have to let them live your experience at the restaurant. Explain in great detail from the impression you had walking in, the service, the food, and  the explicit interactions you had with the employers. If you had a negative experience, your letter has to be in great detail so they can address the issue to prevent it from happening again, or reward you with something for compensation so that you will return back to the restaurant. To keep organized, make sure to follow your thesis statement and talk about each point in order of the way you stated in in the first paragraph so it is easier for the reader to follow. As you will see in my service letter I talk about the staff and the dissatisfying food.

Conclude: Conclude with what you think they could have done to make your experience better, and emphasize that you were either upset or very happy with your experience at the hotel. 

P.S.: At the top of the letter, make sure that you include, name, address, etc so that the letter gets sent properly! If you follow the microsoft word template, it will guide you on how to input the information to send the letter in the correct way!


Dear Mr. Rafaeli:

On May 17th, I dined at your restaurant chain Max Brenner located on Boylston Street in Boston, and felt that the overall experience was very unsatisfying. Upon walking in, the atmosphere definitely puts you in a great mood as the place was packed, the music was going, and the lighting set off a relaxing mood. I was excited to finally have the “Max Brenner experience” as my friends and family put it; they have dined at Max Brenner in Israel and New York and have had raving reviews about the place. However, I had two huge problems with my experience and that was the inefficient staff and the unappetizing food.

After my friend and I were seated and given menus, it took the waiter 20 minutes to come and take our drink order. This did not only happen once but several times. For our entrée and dessert order, it took the waiter another 15 to 20 minutes to come and attend us. It was not until we asked someone else to call our waiter did he come and take our order. In between meals the staff generally comes and asks if we would like anything more or to simply checks up on our dining experience, which our waiter did not do. This made my friend and I feel very unwelcomed. Our waiter did not ever refill our water until we asked him, and during dessert did not give us the right fondue utensils to dip our condiments in. He just lacked an attentive attitude, as he did not even bring us our bill for a long period of time. Upon observing the environment in general, the staff seemed as if they were rushing from one place to another, which put us in a stressed mood.

The food was also under par. We started off with the waffle fries with cocoa and chili powder, which came out soggy. We then moved on to the Max’s Sunday Mood Pasta, which was bland and lacked salt and sauce. We had to add our own salt and pepper in order for the pasta to have taste. The pasta was also supposed to contain ricotta cheese, which was barely put in our pasta. We then moved on to dessert; we have all heard that the Max Brenner’s dessert is supposed to be their specialty and is supposed to be exceptional but it was quite the contrary during my experience. We ordered the European chocolate fondue for two and the fondue was in fact very cold. Although they lit the fondue with a candle it was not preheated at all before and so for the candle to make our fondue hot took forever. We essentially had to dip our condiments in cold fondue, which was not appetizing at all and did not give you that melting, hot sensation.

Overall I was very dissatisfied with the staff and food and I really think that this needs to be fixed for people to enjoy their Max Brenner experience. Simply reminding the waiter to go check up on their customer at a consistent time interval would be a great solution and make the consumer feel welcomed. As for the food, I am not a food expert by any means, but if the chefs could reevaluate their food for seasoning, it would definitely improve the food.

Thank you for taking your time to read this letter, I hope you take my complaints into consideration for future customers to have a great experience.


Saachi Jhaveri
[Student at Boston University’s School of Hospitality ‘15]

Until then,

Happy Traveling!


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