325 South Riverside Avenue
Croton-On-Hudson, NY 10520
Hours: Open all days for dinner
Monday through Thursday 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm
Friday & Saturday 5:00 pm to 10:30 pm
Sundays 1:00 pm to 10:00 pm
“Hi, my name is Dana, and I’ll be your waitress tonight.” At first I cringed hearing that phrase which absolutely drives me nuts. My thought bubble then scripts, “Of course you’re our waitress, arrrgh….” However, Dana turned out to be friendly with a great smile and a fun sense of humor. She was especially funny as we joked about the appetizer (Crabby Patties) – - don’t ever order them, but that’s another story. Dana is a refreshing switch from two other people on the wait staff who actually make me think twice about dining at Ümami.
Well, I’ve decided to out them. Stay away from the likes of Raffi and Sarah.
Good! Now I feel better.
Raffi is reminiscent of Seinfeld’s Soup Nazi character. Upon my last visit, we barely were seated when he came to the table with his snarled unsmiling face and said (not asked) that he was ready to take our order. HE is ready? He was quickly informed that WE were not ready as we hadn’t even had a chance to open the menus.
When your order arrives, Raffi will not place your plate in front of you. He will drop it onto the table as if you were in some Oliver-esque orphanage and as if you’re being fed slop. You better not dare say, “Please sir, more?” This is where the Raffi-nazi steps in.
Upon my last visit, we ordered the chocolate lava cake which was beautifully warmed with vanilla ice-cream sitting on top beginning to melt and cascade down the sides giving you the impression of a miniature Devil’s Tower. The dessert needed one thing to round it out for me – - fresh mint. “Excuse me, may I please get a little mint?”
“Mint!? I don’t have mint.”
“I’m sure the kitchen might have some mint, could you check for us?”
“They don’t have it.”
“Could you please check? I’d appreciate it”
Raffi, gave me a look that read, “If I knew you were going to ask for mint, I would have spit on your chocolate lava cake before giving it to you.”
He marched off – - a couple of minutes later I heard a slam to my right side. Raffi had roughly slammed the glass with sprigs of mint (still with stems and even some roots) in a glass.
This nasty soul wasn’t going to get me down. I picked the leaves and tore them in chiffonade fashion over my dessert.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not using this one example to paint Raffi as the nightmare he is – - there are previous experiences AND complaints about him from others I know who have had the pleasure of his making his acquaintance. Raffi needs to go.
Have you met Sarah?
One of the best experiences at Ümami is immediately receiving the bowl of handmade freshly deep-fried salty chips as soon as you are seated. They are wonderful!
If you have the privilege of meeting Sarah, you’ll have to ask, or perhaps beg for your little plastic bowl of chips. In addition it will take Sarah forever to bring them to you. Once she has taken your order, she is done with you. There is never any follow-up, you have to constantly wave her down for anything you might need.
Socializing is big on Sarah’s agenda. However, If you’d like to engage her, just say, “I love your accent, where are you from? England?” Be careful what you ask for.. you might get it… The ENTIRE history of Sarah, just short of baby photos. I’ve heard it over several visits across many tables. So much so that I want to loudly say across the dining room, “Excuse me, I KNOW you’re from England and the reason you’re here in our country (you’ll have to ask to find out for yourself), but can we get the wine list?” I can’t go on about Sarah anymore, it gives me a knot in my stomach.
Ümami is a lovely place with an interesting menu. Craig Purdy, the owner, has a lot invested here – - I’m surprised an investment in hiring bright shiny happy people isn’t part of the business plan. It truly makes me pause and wonder if I’m up for the battle before going there.
Dana? Haven’t seen her in awhile. Ümami needs more people like her. If you see her, please say, “Hello.”