I had called the restaurant on Monday to make a reservation, and I was assured that my reservation for eight people on Wednesday was in order. However, the first thing that was amiss was that, somehow, they did not have my reservation on Wednesday.
We were seated in the very back of the restaurant. We chose the deluxe version of the menu. However, when we had begun to order the dishes, they simply did not arrive. Any attempt to re-order the miso soup, sunomono or spinach gomaae, for instance, led to the emphatic reply of "yes, yes, yes" - and no food! At one point, one gomae dish was brought out, but we were later told that that was, in fact, four portions.
It was at this point that my friends and I had begun to suspect that the servers must have been following a certain pattern designed to slow down the delivery of food to the table. By stretching out the time between dishes (and it was as long as 15-20 minutes at times), this policy assures that one's AYCE time limit simply runs out before too much food is consumed.
The rest of the food was no better. Although one of my friends had joked about the servers' "remedial ordering" skills, there was very little to laugh about, since (quite consistently) most of the things we had ordered came in absolutely randomly-generated quantities, and other things did not come at all.
The quality of the food itself leaves much to be desired. The meat was covered in greasy fat, the kimchi side-dish was rotten and obviously straight out of the plastic bottle, the tempura looked like it was deep-fried twice, and the oysters motoyaki just tasted like lukewarm shells of garbage cooked in garbage and served twenty minutes after being forgotten in the kitchen. I could go on and on...
Needless to say, my friends and I had decided that this sort of service did not merit any gratuities. We had paid the bill to the last penny and left. However, we were chased after by the incredulous maitre d', who was promptly told the reason why this restaurant will hardly be our dining destination in the future.