Restaurant Gets Negative Review on Yelp — Before It Even Opens

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Screenshot via Eater

NewsFeed has used community-review site Yelp to find bars, restaurants and even movers! But we didn’t know we could also use the site to find business that didn’t actually exist yet.

Chicago restauranteur Graham Elliot — not to be confused with his popular dining spot Graham Elliot — is planning to open a sandwich-soda-snacks-and-soft-serve stand called Grahamwich. (He may have some ego issues.) It is being looked forward to!

However, the anticipation that surrounds the place has also led to Grahamwich’s first negative review on Yelp, long before it opens its doors to any actual customers. As Internet crank Michael J. wrote on the restaurant’s Yelp page:

“My wife and I were downtown and had recently read a review of Graham Elliot Bowles’ new [endeavor], a sandwich shop. The Chicago magazine made it seem like an [interesting] spot and Chef Bowles is a happening food personality, the only problem is the joint isn’t open yet. It was a pleasant walk ruined…”

Michael J. gave the restaurant one star out of five and was rewarded with a blue ‘First review!’ badge.

The hilarity of the situation was not lost on Elliot, who tweeted that it was “Amazing!”

Though the offending review appears to be deleted (along with jokey positive reviews of the place as the story made the Internet rounds), the questions the incident raised remain. While NewsFeed appreciates the democratization of criticism on the web (indeed, it’s how we have jobs!) there are obviously times when people take their anonymous Internet power to ludicrous lengths. Do community review sites run the risk of losing all their usefulness when they let their users go mad with power? Or are embarrassing events like this one simply isolated incidents that can be easily ignored? (via Eater)