great atmosphere!. I've been here for afternoon tea, & while not perfect, it was definitely much better than what Deporpoise wrote about. The service was adequate but not very friendly. We too had a guest cancel but they did not make a big deal about it nor charge us for that person. All the teas I tried were quite flavorful, and the food plentiful. I especially enjoyed the blueberry scones with Devonshire cream & lemon curd, as well as the chocolate-covered strawberries. The sandwiches weren't my favorites I've ever had at tea, but were still tasty. The atmosphere is classic for tea and quite relaxing. We were not rushed at all, & I would love to go again.
THIS PLACE SUCKS.
Well, where to begin...
My younger sister flew into town, and so it was a special occasion, and we had decided to try somewhere upscale for afternoon tea service. (We are tea enthusiasts.) My mother heard good things about Carolina Crossroads, so I called and made a reservation via telephone.
My husband was originally going to join us for tea but could not make it due to work obligations. (He's in the military and could not find someone to take his duty section, so he could not take off as we'd hoped.) So me, my sister, and my mother went to Crossroads and once inside the restaurant corridor, were greeted by a female manager at the front podium who found our name on the list and literally (I'm not joking) yelled at us, "WHERE IS YOUR FOURTH PERSON?" And we responded, "Well, it's just the 3 of us, our fourth person couldn't make it." Then she snapped again, "WELL WHERE ARE THEY?" (As if we owed her an explanation of the actual whereabouts of the missing person in our party.) She began to rudely explain to us that per their reservation policy, if you do not cancel (or inform them that someone can't make it) within 24 hours then you have to pay for their tea service because the food is pre-made.
We had NO PROBLEM paying for the food, that was not the issue. (Even though we were NEVER explained this policy by the reservation specialist on the phone when we'd called.) We had expected to come and spend a lot of money. The issue was the way we were treated. The way this staff person (a manager, by all accounts!) yelled at us was not only shocking and unprofessional, it was the type of behavior that gets someone fired in any other restaurant.
Against our better judgment, we decided to stay because we didn't want to ruin the afternoon. But apparently our servers were aware of the debacle also, and while pouring our tea the server remarked in a very sarcastic tone, "Well now you know for next time." (There won't be a next time.)
So the manager later came up to us while we were dining to let us know that she spoken with the reservation specialist (and the reservation specialist ADMITTED that she had not informed us of their reservation policy), but the manager still did not offer us any apology or show any regret for her temper tantrum. Instead, she said that we wouldn't be required to pay for the missing person's food. We responded we would be glad to pay for that food..because that was never the issue with us.
To top it all off, our food was just average. The tea tasted flat and the tea accompaniments tasted stale. We left still hungry, and went to eat somewhere else within 2 hours after leaving this place. I've never been more disappointed (and offended).
Perplexing Experience at the Crossroads.
Dear Mac Jenkins (Carolina Inn Front Desk Supervisor),
Thank you for your prompt and positive response to my request for a refund of the parking fee I incurred on Tuesday, March 2 when we ate at the Crossroads. Some questions remain:
1. What will happen in the future if we dine with you and attend a concert? Will we be charged a $10 fee? Or do you advise us to choose the less expensive parking available nearby?
2. On Tuesday, we were seated promptly at 6pm and ordered immediately from the "fast" menu. We ordered no appetizers. Yet dinner was served at 4 minutes before 7pm. We had to leave at 7:15pm to get to the concert, so we did not finish our meal, much less have coffee and dessert. Are we to expect similar treatment if we dine with you again?
3. Our table of 4 ordered red wine with dinner. However, our waiter explained that the restaurant was out of red wine glasses, so he set us up with white wine glasses. If we choose to dine with you again, are we to anticipate a similar substitution?
All in all, it was a perplexing experience. Fortunately, the other couple who dined with us were able to stay, finish their meal, and settle the check (they had no concert tickets). I say perplexing because we have dined at the restaurant several times previously and everything went smoothly.
Let me close with this: As usual, the food was excellent!
Best food in Chapel Hill.
Carolina Crossroads has by far the best food in town! My fiance and I have eaten there 3 times now in the past 6 months. Each time, the entire menu has changed. We have never left upset with a meal, and have always been disappointed that our last favorite is no longer there. However, we quickly discover a new favorite.
We highly recommend this restaurant. Next time we eat there, I will make sure to give everyone a rundown of our meal and what made it so nice. Our experience has been that the flavors are always well balanced and the food cooked perfectly.
The waitstaff is relatively young for such a nice restaurant. As a result, they do not always know what is going on in a dish. In addition, they regularly mispronounce basic fine dining words or leave parts off. For example, amusee bouche became amuzee. I know this is nitpicky and kind of hoity toity, but for the price they charge service should be near perfect and not just good enough.
The sommelier is excellent. He has always made good selections that match our meals.
Up-to-date fare at a Chapel Hill culinary landmark, the Carolina Inn..
Step from the enormous porch into the graciously appointed lobby and find yourself surrounded by "homey" sophistication: buttery yellow walls, floral chintzes, massive fresh flower arrangements. It's a decorating theme that embodies the restaurant, at once comfy and upscale. Although the portions here are "European petite," the food is quite excellent thanks to the Inn's talented chef, Brian Stapleton. The fine-dining experience begins with an amuse-bouche and ends with chocolate truffles.
Great Mother's Day Brunch!. I spent my first Mother's Day at the Carolina Crossroad's brunch and had the best experience there! First of all, the restaurant is gorgeous. The perfect place for an elegant meal or a really cute bridal luncheon. The buffet was delicious! Well worth the money we spent on it. The buffet had everything you could want on it except for maybe some boiled shrimp. The desserts were really good. I can't wait to have tea there. The service could have been a little bit more attentive, though. I had to ask for our plates to be cleared after they walked past our table a few times. The servers seemed to be more concerned with taking care of the larger tables. All-in-all, it was a great way to spend my first Mother's Day.
Great Lunch Spot. Four Star Service and Food at very affordable price. For less then what you would pay at an Applebee's or Chili's you can enjoy a freshly prepared, quick lunch in a very relaxing enviroment for less then $10 dollars a person. The menu is great but if you are in a hurry they offer a lunch buffet during the week that is fast and enjoyable.
Nouvelle South Not New South. Carolina Crossroads is a conservative restaurant in a liberal university town. Housed neatly in the Carolina Inn at the heart of Chapel Hill, Crossroads provides an elegant setting reminiscent of the Old South. While the the scene says "southern supper" the food is less sincere and attempts to put on airs in both preparation and presentation. Unfortunately, Crossroads shortcomings stem primarily from trying too hard to be too formal. More creative offerings can be found at more comfortable settings-- see Magnolia Grill or Nana's. However, on occassion you may want the attention of a "nouvelle" southern supper rather than a true "new" south experience.
satisfiable dining in Chapel Hill. The portions were a little small, but the quality of the food was good. There was good mixture of traditional foods as wells as more adventurous faire. The waitstaff tried a little too hard to impress, but relaxed as time wore on.
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