Kitchen Fire And Sh*tty Marketing Plague Rare Steakhouse On Las Olas
Good moooooorning Chronic Nation! Today the Kid is not very happy and let me tell you why, A few months back I was approached by Rare Steakhouse on Las Olas to do a review for them because business wasn’t what they hoped it would be and they needed a little push to get things going. They thought a good review might just do the trick. Eager to build new business relationships and possibly sign a new client I obliged, but to be honest the fact that they had a smoking hot marketing girl who kinda looked like Carmen Electra didn’t hurt either but I digress… I agreed to do the story and marched myself in there one Friday night with my older sister to do the review. Everything started out ok, the drinks came to the table, our waiter was nice, we had an appetizer and placed our dinner order. That’s when trouble struck, all the sudden the alarm started going of at full blast and the kitchen staff came flying out of the kitchen pouring out onto the restaurant floor. They had set the kitchen on fire. Yup you heard me right, the blaze was so intense in fact, that it activated the security sprinklers and the whole kitchen was doused with a fire-retardant foam. All patrons, my sister and I included, were all immediately rushed out of the restaurant and out to the front porch on Las Olas Blvd. We were never again allowed to return to our tables that evening.
It was at this point that I was approached by almost every manager in the restaurant begging me not to put this in the review and to give them another chance to show me how nice their establishment can be when they don’t set the place on fire. Being a nice guy and feeling their sheer embarrassment I obliged and agreed to return the next night after the fire department and restaurant staff cleaned the kitchen and returned it to some sort of working order. My sister and I then left the establishment starving having not received our food before being rushed out the door. To make matters worse, it was now to late to eat anywhere else so I had essentially wasted an entire night of our life on an assignment I wasn’t even getting paid for, needless to say I was less than thrilled. The whole experience seemed like amateur hour to me, as no one really seemed to have a clue what was going on or how to handle the incident. Their solution was to give everyone who’s meals were ruined a free drink card for their next visit to the restaurant. Kinda shabby if you ask me, but what can you really do in a situation like that? I did however return at a later date and receive a good meal and service and it was that information I used to write my review for them. The review was received well by everyone involved and got a great response from my readers, you can read it here [Rare review] pretty good right? Especially after they set the place on fire during the original review!
Now here is where things started to get a little weird. One would think that after such a good review (and me not mentioning the fire) you would want to keep your brand in the eyes of those readers and follow it up with some sort of advertising. One would also think, you would want to throw a bone to the doggie who provided you with the review ie me and buy an ad. This of course did not happen as Rare just accepted the free review and then turned their back on me essentially snubbing me for trying to build a marketing relationship with them. I will admit I was a little surprised by this because I def figured that after the review went so well, they would want to continue to do stuff together and fan the mini marketing fire (pun intended) we had started with the article. They however chose not to, and the Kid was brushed aside for other types of nonsense gimmick marketing like party buses and snake charmers, (yes that really happened). At the end of the day I told myself, what can you do, you can’t make people do the right thing and unfortunately for me this isn’t New York where there is honor amongst thieves. This is fort Lauderdale and everyone is out to try to get one over on you or scam you into doing free work, even a supposedly classy restaurant chain like the one that owns Rare Las Olas, New York Prime.
Now comes the really funny part, after being abused by promoters who used Rare’s high-end location to further their own agenda recklessly dragging the Rare Las Olas brand through the mud and muck of local stripper promo girls and shabby event attempts. Rare is now once again desperately looking for some sort of coherent marketing plan. They have even sunk as low as to put ads in the hooker and pain clinic ridden New Times, I guess their thought process is that the average John wants to eat a sixty dollar steak in-between popping Oxycontin and ordering up $50 escorts. Whoever purchased that advert either didn’t review the New times publication first or quite simply can’t read at all. The truth about Rare is really quite simple, the whole restaurant is dying from a multiple-identity disorder as they whimsically try to please everyone in Fort Lauderdale all at once, to the point that they blast house music and disco lights while you’re sitting down to a nice meal, which obviously makes absolutely no sense at all. It’s the equivalent of eating a $200 dollar dinner at the center of a roller skating ring. If anyone their had half a brain they would close the kitchen and bank of the Las Olas night life explosion brought on by Yolo and Vibe right next door and turn that place into a high-end night club. It has the perfect set up, the crowd is already there, and it would cut operating costs by over 70% with no kitchen, waiters or expensive management. Not to mention the street is screaming for a real night club right now as people desperately searching for an alternative to Riverfront and 2nd St for a classy evening out on Las Olas. Don’t count on Rare to heed my advice though, they have about as much marketing savvy as Charlie Sheen on a bender. If they even make it through the summer I’ll be surprised. Good riddance Rare and as Beyonce would say on to the next one! As always the Kid would never tell Chronic Nation where to go or what to eat but if you get the chance to skip a meal or two at Rare it certainly wouldn’t hurt my feelings. Besides we need to put this place to bed already so that someplace tight can come in and do it right.