242 E 40th St, New York, NY | Directions 1001640.748762 -73.973850
Neighborhoods: Midtown, Murray Hill
What's Next Victor? – I've been a regular customer of this restaurant in all of its incarnations, Chinatown, New Jersey, East 40th Street, and was stunned when this BYO restaurant asked $3.00 for ice to keep the beer cold. What's next Victor, charging for the ice in the ice water, or how about charging for the glass itself? Oh, the food (?), it's still good but not as good as when mom and dad ran the place.
Convenient place near Grand Central for garbage service – Worst food and service experience ever. The most rude and arrogant manager of any restaurant we've ever been to. We were one of only three customers, yet they took forever to come to us and wouldn't let us use a chair to put our coat on since "people would need the chair" -- totally classless.
Great food and a great time! Happy Chinese New Year – After reading all the reviews on citysearch for Phoenix Garden, I was expecting good food, but I was waiting to either be thrown or cursed out by a waiter, or rushed through a meal.
Instead we enjoyed great food, from the soups to the dumpling and beef satay, through the main dishes. The staff could not have been nicer. We were given a table close to the door and asked to be moved to a table further inside the restaurant. Even though they were busy, the accommodated us and moved us immediately. They brought water, hot tea, 2 wine glasses and a cork screw for us to open our wine, which they welcomed us bringing, as this is one of the few BYOB places I know in NYC.
It was also the eve of Chinese New year’s and while the place was crowded, the staff seemed to be in a celebratory mood and welcomed us and wished us all Happy new year.
We took our time, drank a bottle of wine before even opening the menus. Unlike the experience of several of the reviewers I read here, that was no problem. The waitress came over once and asked if we were ready, when we told her we needed a few more minutes, she obliged and returned as soon as we indicated we were ready to order. Each course came out with good timing.
After dinner we continued to enjoy our wine and conversation and in fact were the next to last table in the place. Finally one of the staff came over and said “ok good night” obviously indicating they wanted to stack the chairs and go home. That is nothing any other restaurant would not have done.
Looking forward to the next time we go to Phoenix Gardens. We tried Shredded Pork Lo Mein, Chicken with scallions and ginger and Shredded pork with black bean sauce. All were good with satisfying potions, without being gluttonous. Remember, they are BYOB and allow Beer, wine or Champagne, so come prepared.
Great food great friendly service – the food is great here. the waiters and waitresses are helpful and all friendly. cash only. no credit cards. as long as the nice brother (the thinner one) is there all is well. the fat brother is mean and unhappy, maybe because of his weight. the other reviewers are wrong about the food and service. i have been there four times in the last three weeks and everything has been teriffic.
Food 3 stars : welcome & service 0 stars – Arrogant. Unfriendly. Unhelpful. Sad, isn't it. And worse, the staff don't seem to realise the impression they create.
I was so upset by the way my guests were treated, I paid the check but left no tip. A few minutes later, waving the check, an older lady followed me into the street , I expained briefly why I'd chosen to leave no tip. She scowled, and scurried back into the restaurant.
A few minutes later, a manager strormed out of the restaurant and yelled after me: "Arsehole".
A case history in customer releations?
Never Go! – The food at Phoenix Garden had been decent but it had a long reputation of a poor service. Many of my friends stopped going there but I still went because until today I didn't know the meaning of a truly bad service.
Phoenix Garden has always operated under BYOB. As a service they brought out an icebox for drinks and I had never been charged. Today my bill came with unknown charges and I questioned the waitress. The son who took over his father's business responded to my inquiries with nasty arrogant manners. Because he was unbearable I told the waitress that they've just lost a customer.
When I got up my seat I left my coat on my seat, the owner yelled at me and reminded me to take my coat so that I wouldn't return. Then he cursed and said, “F*ck you Bitch, never come back again.” The waiter stared at him and froze. I said under no circumstances his behavior is acceptable and I will make sure that the world know of my experience. In this recession, I rather spend my money elsewhere. Cheers to my last visit to Phoenix Garden.
I don't know where the negative reviews come from – I have been here twice in the past 2 months and I will be coming back again.
The food is good- esp for the price. I had the salt and pepper prawns and they were delicious.
I have never been treated badly, the staff has been very nice on the occasions I came.
You can also bring your own wine and beer which is wonderful in these tough times.
You should try it out, you'll enjoy it. Remember that it is cash only.
Terrible Food – The food is awful and when i went to the bathroom there were rodents running around. Service is terrible and the owner is extremely rude. I will never go there again.
Good food, service not NEARLY terrible enough – Wife and I, Chinese Food lovers, lived in the neighborhood for years, heard the food was good but the service was terrible. Well, the food was good, the spare ribs in a honey sauce especially, but the service was just kinda bad? sorta mean? not the outright misanthropic torture chamber we were expecting. The owner wasn't exactly happy to be their, but neither was he a scowling martinet, nor was the wife an invective spewing troglodyte . In short, we were after the Soup Nutsy* of Schezuan province, but just ran into a slightly churlish guy who served a mean crispy beef. Bottom Line : While it was disappointing not to have a story for the ages, we ended up with an above average meal at a reasonable price. But the owner has to be a lot meaner or a lot nicer, because right now he?s a ?tweener? with no real niche.
*city search doesn't allow for the inclusion of the word "natsee" even in a "Seinfeldian" context
Great Restaurant! Great service! Great price! Beats Chinatown! – My whole family has been eating here for many years. I don't write reviews but read them from time to time and thought I should let anyone who cares know that the food is great, the service is great and the owners (also a family) and wait staff are some of the nicest people around. They don't suffer arrogance and aren't phony but are good hearted and friendly. The food is superb and the price is right. The Pepper and Salty Shrimp or Oysters are favorites but pretty much everything is top notch.
I could say more and it all would be positive but you get the picture. A true NY gem!
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