Sunday, April 26, 2009

Oh Yumm-Revisit

We hadn’t been in awhile, and we wanted to go somewhere casual that we were confident would be pretty good. Oh Yumm is a place we have been a lot, and while it isn’t amazing or anything, we have always found it a fairly consistently good choice for a casual meal in a nice neighborhood spot. We were there at the end of the winter menu, when the Spring stuff hadn’t really been rolled out yet. We pretty much always order off the tapas menu, and not the regular dinner menu—we have found the few times we did order off the dinner menu, the food wasn’t as tasty. Someone recently asked me for advice about this place, and what to order, and that is it---just get tapas and skip the rest.

The first small plate we had was the shrimp & grits. It was three large bacon wrapped shrimps on top of quite a bit of grits with a nice sort of chipotle-ish sauce. They were nice. The shrimp was cooked properly and the bacon added a nice saltiness.

We also tried the carne asada tostadas which had a black bean spread, some marinated spicy beef and served with traditional accoutrements like lettuce, cheese, guacamole and a yummy lime cumin sour cream (could have used a but more of this). All served on a corn tortilla.

We also had two of our perennial favorites (mainly because not much else sounded appealing on this particular night). We had the Kobe slider with gorgonzola and pickled red onions (I love those red onions) which was fine. You only get one slider though, so if you are sharing it, it is really just a couple bites each. We also had the calamari which is always good, and fried properly and served with a nice “spicy samba aioli.” It has a nice flavor with a bit of the tang I like.

For dessert we had what is one of my favorite desserts in Indy, the chocolate chip bread pudding. I was tempted by the recent picture of the s’mores brulee featured in Indianapolis Monthly, but hubby wouldn’t have it. He loves the bread pudding as much as I do, and isn’t as big a fan of s’mores items. It was good as always.

Unfortunately, the big downside of the evening was the service. It was painfully slow and slightly haughty. From the moment I asked for a bigger table (because we were having small plates and never have enough room at the smaller tables), I got “the look” even though the place was pretty much empty inside (I think there was one other table) (Everyone was sitting outside on this night). The rest of the meal continued in that vein, impossible to flag down the server when we needed something and generally it took forever to get it. It seemed like he was doing us a favor by even waiting on us at times.

It is a shame, because from recent comments I have heard, I am not the only one having such an experience. The place slowly filled up as we were there and two servers simply wasn’t enough for the whole place as well as a full outside patio. And a busser or two might have helped as well.

On this note, I would love to hear what you, dear readers, do in situations like this. How is really poor service reflected in your tip, return visits etc? Hubby and I tend to be pretty good tippers, and alter our tip in such a situation, but I wonder if it even sends a message in this City? Would love to hear from you all, and any servers who might read this about this issue.

Oh Yumm! Bistro
5615 N. Illinois
Indy, 46208


  1. I have hear the same thing about Oh Yumm. People always seem to get sat by the service station or kitchen and have really poor service. My friends usually give the food 6 or 7 out of 10 and the service a 4.

    Service does affect my opinion of the restaurant, my tip and everything else in between. I am a former server and I get it. A low tip doesn’t necessarily mean there is bad service, some people only tip 15% at best regardless. It is difficult to make that correlation, so I am not 100% sure if you are making the intended point.

    I recently went to Mo’s Steakhouse and the service was odd. The server was at the table way too much and I ordered a side and my server said that it wasn’t good and I should try something else?! I was thinking…you just admitted that your kitchen sends out sub par food. His recommendations were horrible and the meal was a disaster. We were in and out in 55 minutes with three courses.

  2. I'm a server, and honestly I usually know the kind of tip I deserve. If I am having an "off" night or had a major scew-up or something I understand getting a lesser tip. You can't begrudge someone not tipping well when you know you didn't do your best.

    I am only bothered by people who give me low tips when I give great service. Many tip poorly regardless, either they don't realize it or are just cheap. Sometimes it really feels like no matter how my service is I will get the same tip regardless (high or low) just because that's the way those people tip.

    I personally tip based on service (though I honestly don't usually go below 15%) because snotty servers or those who stand in the corner chatting it up while you need something don't deserve a good tip. I just don't know if it is sending a message at all to servers who think its ok to act like that.

  3. Baggles, thanks for your input. I was wondering because I have been server in my past as well, and pretty much never tip below 15%, but I figure that isn't sending much of a message for really bad service. But it is hard when you know some people just give bad tips regardless. I would love to hear from other servers about what the average % tip is in Indy.

  4. As a current server (and culinary school grad) I feel I should comment about the tippers and servers in Indy. "wouldibuyitagain" mentioned about a server saying that they didn't like something on the menu and told them not to get it. I see ABSOLUTELY NOTHING wrong with that. As a server, your job is to give great service, recommendations, and give the customer a desire to return to the restaurant at a later date. If a customer asks me what I think about a certain dish, I'm going to tell them my honest opinion. Not all plates of food at a restaurant are great, some are weaker then others, and thats what keeps chefs and cooks on their toes for improvement. As for tipping, I agree, it really doesnt matter how great your service is some people just refuse to go above 15%. Some will if you really do go "above and beyond" I work as a server as a second job, and being a culinary school grad helps me because I can explain food better than most servers. I have a 21% tip average at the restaurant I work at and sometimes its just about making the guest feel like they matter and treat them with the same respect you want to be treated with.