Savannah >Food & Dining > Sakura Downtown
I visited Savannah few weeks ago and decide to get something to eat.
I went into Sakura because it was right in the heart of downtown and it offers a lunch special around $7.
I didn't expect it to be elegant dining which it is not, but the atmosphere was homey and the servers were friendly.
The food was delicious I didn't expected it to taste so good. The spicy fish was just crispy enough and yet so tender that it melted into my mouth. I wonder how they managed that, I'm sure it's some ancient secret.
I left there happy that I found a place that I can enjoy some good food and is not overly priced.
After reading some of the comments here I realize other people seemed not to be too happy with this place, I'm a little surprised at their experience, but I have to guess my experience is not typical or this restaurant wouldn't have been there for such a long time.
This restaurant sucks.
This restaurant was OKAY a couple of years ago and has just gone so downhill since.
First, they leave this mayonnaise sauce on the table all day every day.
The owner is rude. She's rude to everyone. The server system is so annoying because they are ready to help you until there is a problem and then you can't find anyone to help you. For instance, I got a salad once as a meal, asked specifically for it to come out with my friend's meal, it came out 15 min before his on a hot plate. It was disgusting and no one would help me. One waiter after another ignored me, even after one waiter said even he wouldn't pay for it, until the male owner came and took it and asked me to leave. I chipped my tooth on a piece of chicken. I got a pubic hair in my food. This is no joke. a pubic hair seriously. They have illegal immigrants working in the kitchen and the said kitchen staff sleeps upstairs in the storage space. This restaurant needs to be shut down. It is a disgrace and is disgusting. If i could rate it zero stars i would.
More to the Story.
I used to work at Sakura and may be able to offer some insight to these reviews. First of all, I would agree that large parties should be seated in a booth or on the stage. However, most large parties are unwilling to split up, only leaving the area in the back.
Also, not many people are aware that at this restaurant when customers mis-order, or change their mind, the servers ALWAYS have to pay for their food. The owner will not discount anything. So if you think you got a discount, it's because the server paid for your food. So what may be perceived as stubborness, may be them not being able to afford a 20$ mistake. Even when I worked at nicer restaurants, we were allowed to change and cancel orders. Servers are not allowed to make mistakes there basically.
Many times, the owner will ASK the servers to confront people about not tipping, which is often uncomfortable.
When I go to a restaurant, if the service is bad, I leave 10% and don't go back again. I have never abstained from tipping. Without the tip, the servers do NOT make minimum wage. They make nothing.
There is no "place" for the servers there, as there are at restaurants. So they are standing in the middle of the restaurant waiting to help anyone that needs them.
Another thing, all the servers share tips. This means, you can be a completely tidy, presentable, and polite person, but you may have to share tips with someone who is not like that.
I do think it's unfortunate that some people were treated badly. It's not always like that. There is room for error anywhere you go.
As far as taking a long time goes, there is a sign clearly posted that says it may take 30-45 minutes to get your sushi. Sometimes there are 60+ people in the restaurant and only one chef. Each roll is made to order. Have you ever made sushi before?
Maybe it's gone downhill since I left, but I would eat there any day. Sesame chicken with fried rice is the best dish. As far as rolls go, I love the Rock n Roll and the Nemo.
Also, their lunch special includes a ginger salad and a drink.
I am grateful for the time I had working there. It helped me get through and graduate college.
When I come back to visit, I will definitely eat there.
If you want to eat while being treated like crap, EAT HERE..
I find it repulsive that they seat larger groups of people in the back, which is directly beside the restrooms that they probably never clean, and half the customers seated next to the hallway get a breeze of restroom air clinging to their food as they dine.
What's really laughable is that they require that larger groups of 5 or more pay 20% gratuity. It's not your decision, it's theirs. As far as I know, I think having more people should be easier on the waitress, because they'd get to walk less and deal with less tables.
A week before, I dined with a group of 20 at another Sushi Restaurant (WASABI'S). the waiter was kind and and remembered everyone's order without troubling the customer. The waitresses as Sakura's could barely remember 7 even after all the plates were already there when passing out the checks.
Other problems I had included the fact that the waitress forgot what my friend ordered, gave attitude to save face to the customer, never cleared any of the empty plates, only came around once to ask if we needed water, took forever to notice when we were done, and insisted that all the bills be processed together.
I think these things would only be forgivable if it was extremely busy and she had to serve several tables at a time, but it was a rainy day and I noticed that they had the time for idle chat while neglecting the customers and doing the least amount of work possible. When I was a waitress, I was taught to always watch for the customer's needs, so I wasn't allowed the privilege to waste time.
When I received my bill, I noticed that 20% gratuity was automatically charged. I'm used to being able to choose how much pay, which is the minimum of 15% because I'm a poor college student. So I crossed out the 20% tip and wrote 15% because I believe they didn't deserve to be paid more than the people at Wasabi's who actually do HONEST work.
Well, they decided they deserved the extra 5% and took it out of my change. I know it's miserly to have the need to save that extra 5%, but it's not the money, it's the point I'm trying to get across. I'm also pretty sure she badmouthed me to her friends there too, because the lady with deep red eyeshadow who was clearing off the table was noticeably rude to my friends while passing out the receipts.
Perhaps it's insulting to lower the tip, but the fact of the matter is that they didn't even deserve to be tipped for their service I can't call service, because I believe the tipping system was designed for the customer to rate how well a waitress does her job, otherwise they would get paid minimum wage like everyone else.
By far, this is the only restaurant I've been to that has offended me to the point where I wanted to warn people about it through a review, and the things I've wrote here are only one instance of bad behavior from these people. I myself have always worked really hard to get paid, so I don't think it's fair for me use my hard-earned money for trashy waitresses who take their job for granted, while hiding behind rules and requirements to oppress the customers.
Ok. I've been to Sakura multiple times to eat lunch or dinner with friends. And normally, I would have a bad eating experience due to the rude and disrespectful attitudes of the "unproper-dress-code" waitresses.
1. The waitresses dress more like they would work at a local bar rather than a restaurant.
2. They are the b*tchist group of people you could ever have serving your food.
And 3. They rush you out and often complain about tip.
This was an innocent mistake on my part but I once forgot to pay tip after I had dinner with a very close friend. On my way out, the waitress who attended us walked up to me with an attitude and said, "So you're not going to leave a tip?" I felt bad about forgetting and gave the girl $3. (This was more tip than actually calculated based off the bill). Though it was mostly my fault for forgetting about the tip, I still believe it was disrespectful to demand a tip from a frequent customer in such a manner as she did.
Now on a recent experience... My friends and I (group of 7 in which I at least made a reservation to the restaurant to warn them of our arrival) all went to eat at Sakura for dinner. I had ordered an appetizer along with sushi. When everyone's sushi had came in and the entrees started arriving, I noticed I never got my sushi. I informed the waitress about my order, and she told me I never ordered the sushi. Meanwhile all my friends recalled the waitress nodding in agreement to when I ordered the sushi earlier. I reminded her that I did order the sushi and she continued to deny the order. Finally she brought the sushi over with an attitude and a stuck-up face.
Later the bills came in. Because we were more than a group of 5, the tip was 20%. We all thought the tip percentage was pretty high and especially for the terrible service. A friend of mine decided to only pay 15% tip. A different waitress come over after they processed the change and complained to us rolling her eyes and giving us an attitude. Then I noticed they didn't even give me back my change (even though it was only 68 cents). I was just too fed up and didn't want to make a scene for only 68 cents, I just quietly and quickly left the eating facility.
YOU ARE BETTER OFF PAYING A LITTLE MORE TO THE JAPANESE RESTAURANT ACROSS THE STREET IF YOU WANT TO BE TREATED WITH RESPECT.
DO NOT SUPPORT SAKURA!
They should be SHUT DOWN.
The only reason this place garners customers is because its cheap for the college students to afford.
The service is the worst ever, and the food is rotten. The place smells, but not of food. The waitresses and owner have no regard for the customers. They dress like they are working in a brothel, and are more foul mouthed than the worst scum of Savannah.
Please don't ever go to this place. Please stop giving them business so that they can behave this way.
Authorities please look into this matter, this is really getting out of hand.
BETRAYED BY INCONSIDERATE OWNER AND WAITERS!. I'd like to start this review stating that I have been eating in Sakura for years now. It is, well WAS, one of my favorite restaurants. I read the other reviews and apparently what happened to me has been a recurrent event. For the past 3 years I have always left a tip, BUT THEY NEVER CHARGE IT TO MY ACCOUNT! Six months ago I talked to the hostess and owner, a small ill-tempered Asian lady, that has never greeted me or treated me nicely, or any other customer for that fact. I told her to please charge the tip to my account, I know how hard being a waitress is, so I was concerned that they the owner was not being fair. This time, I went there and I ordered my food. The waitress that attended me has been working there for a very long time, but I did not tip, because they never charge it to my account. Once I even left a $5 tip, it was never charged. Then this same dirty blond waitress comes at me right when I am leaving and asked me rudely why I did not leave a tip. I explained to her what I just stated above and she was so rude and told me I should leave a tip now. I told her I was not going to because they never accept my money. I told them this was bad service, you never ask a customer to leave tip that is at the customers’ discretion. She told me to never come back, I told her I would not. I went to the library and I printed all the reviews the restaurant had, went back and gave them to her. She was such a bitch, just smiled sardonically and said thank you. I FELT SO INSULTED AND BETRAYED, even though the place is so dirty, the floors covered in grime and the fish tank about to explode with muck, I still went there because food was ok. I used to appreciate the waitresses and their hard work and always treat them kindly even though they forgot to return the favor many time. They better loose their waiters or soon they will loose something more valuable, their clientele.
Worst Experience EVER. Let me start this out by saying that I have never EVER left a restaurant without leaving my waiter/tress a tip. On my second trip to Sakura today, we walked in and were greeted by a girl with a messy pile of black hair on her head, and I use greeted in a very loose way. She gave us the stink eye and didn't say a word and then proceeded to stare at us and the entire area with a blank expression on her face, then another girl with messy black hair hanging all over her face wearing a dirty white tank-top and a black bra walked up and pointed to a general area of booths and told us to "sit wherever" and then mumbled under her breath while walking away. The last time I had eaten here the food was decent and the service wasn't so bad, but this was the most excruciating lunch I have ever spent my time eating. After we sat down at a booth a young man listening to his ipod walked up and demanded to know what drinks we wanted. But not before he accidentally paused the music blasting out of his ipod and then swore and turned it back on while making us wait for him. A couple of minutes later one of the girls with the messy piles of black hair walked up and was a incredibly rude because we hadn't gotten our order ready within the three minutes they'd given us. We told her we needed more time and she sighed loudly, shuffled on her hips, rolled her eyes an walked towards the back of the restaurant to yell at her boss. Her boss proceeded to yell at her and they began to argue loudly. She returned moments later and we ordered our food while she sighed, tossed around her hair and generally acted like she owned the place and was queen b-tch. So while we wait for our sushi we get to watch this spoiled little girl slam things all over the place and listen to her boss yelling at her in front of customers instead of just firing her. The sushi was decent, but when our waitress brought it to us she slammed it on the table without bringing us personal plates, and then stormed off without telling us which rolls were which. When she finally emerged stomping from the back we asked her and instead of an answer she mumbled and pointed randomly, sighed, rolled her eyes and stormed off. Throughout this, the hostess with the black pile of hair stood at the front of the restaurant staring into dead space not doing any work at all, while all the asian employees scrambled around working really hard. When we were finally finished we got our check, and I tipped the sushi chef four dollars (way over 15%) in his personal jar, and we wrote a note for our waitress telling her that if she expected tips then she needed to be a little more thankful about the fact that she has a job in this terrible economy instead of being rude and obnoxious since hundreds and hundreds of people would love her job and probably do it better than her. After we left the busboy had the nerve to follow us out while we were smoking a cigarette and yell at us about how we were "f(swear word citysearch wont let me write)ing him over" and he swore at us a couple of times. I gave him a dollar because he had been the least rude of all of them, and told him that if he wanted tips then they needed to get rid of the spoiled little girl they have serving tables. It was about this time that she came out of the store and started screaming at me about how she deserved tips and that the "personal attacks" we left her on the note were out of line. She swore at me, I swore back, and then she said "WELL IF YOU DON'T LIKE IT THEN DON'T EVER F(swear word citysearch wont let me write)ING COME BACK YOU B(swear word citysearch wont let me write)CH" and stormed inside. Any restaurant that allows their waitstaff to treat their paying customers like that does not deserve to have any patronage at all. If I could leave zero stars I would. Worst meal experience I've ever had in my entire life.
great place for disgusting food. umm the dishes stay in the bus tubs overnight covered in beer and sushi so think about that next time you eat there
Good food! Horrible service!!!. I had been going to Sakura's for almost 2 years while I'm at SCAD, but the owner has a tendency to be rude to customers and employees. The food is good but it's not worth the bad service.Two of my friends and I went a day ago, we were waiting 45 minutes for our food and another 45 for our check. I went to the desk to pay, the owner asked me where the tip was, I told her I didn't leave one. She got mad and said about how I never leave a tip! You don't leave tips for bad service.The food is not worth the bad service.
Sign in with Facebook Sign in with Facebook to see what your friends are up to!
Do you have a review of Sakura Downtown on your blog? If you include the Citysearch image link (shown below) in your post, we'll automatically link to your review from the business profile page. Here's how our Linkback system works:
The Linkback system is free and automatic. It's really that easy.
To link to our business profile page, copy the html below to your web page.