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Old 11.03.2012, 13:22
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Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Even-though menu list in Mister Wong appears to have many vegetarian food, Vegetarian / Vegan's dining there should be extremely careful.

Once we got vegetable chop suey with eggs, we returned and "no refunds"

This time it was vegetable soup. We asked for a vegetarian soup, and was served a soup with chicken stock. I was able to recognize it from the smell of it.

When returned staff were rude and unfriendly, shouted at us, as if it was our mistake and admitted that they used chicken stock since veg stock was not readily available.

So advise to fellow V's, please be extra careful if you get food from Mister Wong and note that basel is a veg friendly city with many other good restaurants who fully understand vegetarianism.
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Old 11.03.2012, 13:30
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Some alternatives to consider in the future:

Vegetarian in Basel

Review: Tibits Zürich
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Old 11.03.2012, 13:36
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Thanks, Tibits is one of my favorite. Staff are very friendly as well. Once we found a small stone inside samosa. They appologised for their mistake and were very polite. I still go there regularly.
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Old 11.03.2012, 13:43
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

At least they apologised - you are not alone. Customer service has some way to go over here.

Filing Customer Complaints - Is it worth it?
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Old 11.03.2012, 13:51
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Mister Wong staff neither appologised nor did not ask if we want another soup with vegetable stock. They only got agitated over it and was ready for a fight. I have never experienced such a situation here. Generally I find service standards here to be good and staff are friendly.
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Old 12.03.2012, 16:33
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Paging the EF Legal department - what can the restaurant do if you refuse to pay for it?

In the US they (generally) don't charge you if you say a dish wasn't as described.

My favourite was receiving very surly service from a poncy bar/restaurant place in London. The bill arrived with a 12.5% (optional) service charge. I put down the money to pay for the bill. The waitress checked - and said I hadn't paid enough. I double checked - and said "Ah yes, if we had received service we'd have been happy to pay for it"
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Old 12.03.2012, 16:39
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

In the UK, the 12.5% service charge often added to bills (in up market places) is optional and you're free to ask for it to be removed. You can then pay any amount (zero, or just less than 12.5%) you wish.

I've never been to Mr Wongs but if it's "vegetable soup" then I see nothing wrong with them using chicken stock. If it says anywhere that it's suitable for vegetarians (some places use a green "V" next to the item on the menu) then they are, of course, wrong to claim such.

Many years ago, German restaurants would consider "speck" as a flavouring akin to salt, and marked dishes containing it as vegetarian. It was put on salads. I think they've stopped doing that now.
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Old 12.03.2012, 19:22
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Mister Wong set up is like fast food restaurant, so we pick our food pay and then only we get to taste it. Also when we order we ordered for a vegetarian soup and not a vegetable soup.
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Old 12.03.2012, 19:28
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

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when we order we ordered for a vegetarian soup and not a vegetable soup.
Are you sure?

Did you go by the German, or the crappy English pseudo translation?

Tom
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Old 12.03.2012, 19:40
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

I once found the meat quite chewy and gummy.

I complained with:

-"This meat is rubbery ".

To which the manager replied:

-"Oh, Flan yoo velly mush".
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Old 12.03.2012, 20:10
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

I'd suggest it was more an honest cultural and linguistic misunderstanding rather than an attempt to covertly smuggle Chicken Licken into you, but the customer is always right, so hey ho

Anyway, on the same note, saw this today saying that by law, Parmesan cheese cannot be vegetarian as the DOC which controls its provenance states that it must be made with animal rennet. So if Mr Wong ever tries to sprinkle Parmesan on your vegetable dimsum, just say no
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Old 12.03.2012, 22:58
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

http://www.gastrag.ch/locations.php

The above seems to imply Mr Wongs, Papa Joe's and Pickwick Pubs (among others) are all owned by the same company. I didn't know that.
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Old 12.03.2012, 23:54
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

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In the UK, the 12.5% service charge often added to bills (in up market places) is optional and you're free to ask for it to be removed. You can then pay any amount (zero, or just less than 12.5%) you wish.

I've never been to Mr Wongs but if it's "vegetable soup" then I see nothing wrong with them using chicken stock. If it says anywhere that it's suitable for vegetarians (some places use a green "V" next to the item on the menu) then they are, of course, wrong to claim such.

Many years ago, German restaurants would consider "speck" as a flavouring akin to salt, and marked dishes containing it as vegetarian. It was put on salads. I think they've stopped doing that now.
Sorry to Jaaa MY for the bad experience in Mr. Wongs, terrible when food isn't what you want or expect, particularly since it can't be refunded then reused / resold to someone else (no way for restaurant to recoup the loss). Thankfully usually the profit margin for food is pretty good, so it makes it somewhat easy for customer service - of course, that's expectation from elsewhere anyhow, what markup is for the restaurants in that area of Basel, I'm not sure - particularly Mr. Wong as they're pretty inexpensive.


Anyhow, about this bolded bit from Adrian - that's my thinking too. Vegetable soup described just so doesn't necessarily mean "vegetarian" soup to me. Considering that "Today's Soup" (for almost any restaurant) is often made of leftovers of yesterday's mains and sides that get chopped and thrown together in a pot - who knows what those veg were cooked / seasoned with yesterday, so unless it expressly says "vegan" or "vegetarian", I wouldn't assume.


On a side note, the mention of "speck" flavoring reminds me - I saw some bacon bullion in an ethnic grocery, near SBB, down that passage kinda next to / behind Burger King... I keep meaning to get some, thanks for the reminder!
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Old 13.03.2012, 00:35
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Yes I know vegetable soup does not mean its vegetarian, we specifically asked for vegetarian vegetable soup. But staff there was lazy to make vegetable stock so instead they used readily available chicken stock
Being a long time vegetarian I was able to recognise it purely with the smell of the soup

And on top of it, when we returned they got mad with us, and shouted and impolitely answered. "If you want, go and complain to our manager". But that's not what is expected.

We expected them to change the soup and give a vegetable soup with vegetarian stock


Anyway I just wanted to caution others so that they will not have the same bad experience.
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Old 13.03.2012, 01:29
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

Since it seems the same company owns many restaurants in Basel, maybe you should write a letter to their "corporate office" to complain about your treatment. I'm sure that a company with that many businesses wouldn't like it to get around that they allow their customers to be treated rudely.

Well. I'd think so anyhow.
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Old 13.03.2012, 02:25
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

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Even-though menu list in Mister Wong appears to have many vegetarian food, Vegetarian / Vegan's dining there should be extremely careful.

Once we got vegetable chop suey with eggs, we returned and "no refunds"

This time it was vegetable soup. We asked for a vegetarian soup, and was served a soup with chicken stock. I was able to recognize it from the smell of it.

When returned staff were rude and unfriendly, shouted at us, as if it was our mistake and admitted that they used chicken stock since veg stock was not readily available.

So advise to fellow V's, please be extra careful if you get food from Mister Wong and note that basel is a veg friendly city with many other good restaurants who fully understand vegetarianism.
Well, eggs to me are NOT meat, even if you of course are right in principle

http://www.mister-wong.ch/zuerich-bahnhof/
I have been to Wong Zch-HB and always liked the pleasant personnel but I frankly don't know how THEY would deal with vegetarian customers.

Clearly, people in restaurants should accept it in full if somebody does not want
- meat in any form
- rice in any form
- milk in any form
I still remember a visit to Délémont with a Singapore partner who was a very strict Pakistani Muslim who suffered from an aggressive sort of diabetes. We were in a restaurant at lunch and I explained the problem to the waitress. The nice girl rushed back and came round with an English menue. AND first sorted out everything even partially with pork and then carefully tackled the diabetes matter. Saying "well, this then would be good for you BUT I will tell our cook NOT to put this and that into the meal as it is bad for diabetes people" and so mastered this difficult double challenge. People who get angry about being challenged simply are not up to the job.
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Old 13.03.2012, 08:54
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

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People who get angry about being challenged simply are not up to the job.
I like the food and the ambience of Mr Wongs, regularly eating there or buying takeaways. However, most of the staff, most of the time, do not look very happy. I have often wondered why. Perhaps serving steamy food in a fastfood cafe, is not what many of them thought they would end up doing in Switzerland.
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Old 13.03.2012, 23:08
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Re: Vegetarian Soup with chicken stock @ Mister Wong

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I like the food and the ambience of Mr Wongs, regularly eating there or buying takeaways. However, most of the staff, most of the time, do not look very happy. I have often wondered why. Perhaps serving steamy food in a fastfood cafe, is not what many of them thought they would end up doing in Switzerland.
What frustrates many of them are things like
- customers who only come for having something fast but do not like it
- customers not showing any delight about the excellent stuff they offer
-
If you however openly show your delight about the excellent meals and the nice spices, you can see them smiling from one ear to the other
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