Vegan Cafe Implodes After Customer Complains About Naked Baby
In the 21st century, the predominance of restaurant reviews has given consumers more choice and far greater agency than they could ever have dreamed of before. In the past, only professional journalists had the power to write restaurant reviews, and these experts were the only people to rate such establishments.In the digital age, things are different. Now anyone has the power to make an account on Yelp and post their opinion of an eatery online. In some respects this exchange of power has come at the detriment of restaurants. Pushy, jumped-up snobs with high expectations have used Yelp and other platforms in order to extort waiters and chefs and make ludicrous demands.Last week Chelsea Bartley’s (on the left in the above image) scathing review of a vegan cafe in Memphis managed to spark a major debate on social media, which resulted in a veritable storm of controversy and negative publicity for the offending cafe – a storm which has hence been dubbed (no joke) “Buttholegate” by bemused commenters. I’ve heard of Watergate, and Nipplegate, but this is just getting ridiculous.The scandal began when Bartley posted a negative review regarding the Imagine Vegan Cafe in Tennessee, in which she alleged that the owner’s unruly children had spoiled her dining experience. In her surreal account, Bartley asserted that the infant was running around the establishment, shouting. The child then bent over and promptly displayed its anus to Bartley while she was eating. If that wasn’t weird enough, another of the owner’s children later started yodelling at her. What the heck?After her two-star review provoked outrage, the offending cafe posted a furious rebuke via Facebook, in which they stated that the child in question was in the middle of potty training, and had managed to take off its diaper and wriggle free. Another status also admonished people for “bashing a restaurant they’ve never been to”, and added that Bartley was now banned from the cafe.In response to this, Bartley stated; “I was just venting about the horrible experience I had and hoping that I could make it obvious that the lack of hygiene and professionalism didn’t go unnoticed during my visit. To be clear, I don’t have anything to gain from lying about my visit … Thank you to everyone who has supported my right to leave an honest review, and to those who have spoken out against the ridiculous response Imagine Cafe has made.”She added, “I have nothing against children in restaurants or just behaving like kids, I was reviewing in regards to the fact that I watched the mother stand there and do nothing and I thought it was shocking. I was extremely uncomfortable during the meal, despite it being something that I enjoy regularly at home from the microwave.”But this isn’t the first time that we’ve seen a heated argument between a restaurant and its customers. Remember when an Irish cafe ended up with a huge vendetta against vegans?