There are, of course, exceptions. Read reviews of The Enterprise at Chalk Farm on sites like fancyapint, and punters love it's old school indie atmosphere, eclectic mix of regulars, music and poetry nights and decent beer selection.
However, it appears the feeling is not mutual: the Enterprise really dislikes its customers. BLTP alerted me to the front page of their website, which is, incredibly, an extended attack on the behaviour of punters at the bar.
|This pub hates you and your custom. Go away.|
I worked behind a bar for four years. I know people can be annoying after a few drinks. But you know what? It comes with the territory. If punters behave in a way that really is abusive, unpleasant or unreasonable, you absolutely have the right to eject or even bar them. But if it's merely irritating, I'm afraid you just have to deal with it, or if interacting with people upsets you so much, get a job somewhere else.
No one likes an arse or someone who gets to the front of the queue and then spends five minutes deciding what they want. But it seems the objectionable behaviour that so upsets the Enterprise staff includes asking for a full pint and making sure you're given the correct change. And as for trying to start up a conversation with the bar staff - how dare you!
Here it is in full:
A MESSAGE TO OUR CUSTOMERS:-
To all of our lovely patrons, to make life easier and more fun, when at the bar please do the following:Be rude, whistle, click your fingers and shout when you want to be served. Don’t forget how blind we are…so wave that money!Order one drink at a time-then pay separatelyGet to the bar and forget what you ordered, then proceed to ask your 10 mates what they want again. We love to stand around and wait whilst you decide…Fosters or Kronenburg?Complain about the music being too loud…then complain about the music being to lowIf we say we don’t sell something, the chances are we are lying to you! So please keep asking for what we don’t sell (Stella please!)If we can, we will always serve you a cold beer in a warm glassThere is nothing on Earth more attractive than a drunk man…so whip out those o-so-witty chat up lines…us girls love itThe bar staff get paid far too much money, so please do not tip us it is just insulting!You are right! The head on that pint was far too big! Let me give you an extra pint for free because of our greedWe always like taking your money, but there is nothing better for us than you leaving your money on the bar in a puddle of beer…don’t forget to point at it, just in case we can not see it floating thereIf paying on a debit or credit card, when it comes to putting your pin number in, ignore us and finish that conversation with the stranger next to you…or better go for a little walk. Its fun for us to find youI’m sorry you were correct! That was a £20 note not a £10 note!Please tell us when we close…I’m sure you deserve that last drink after time…why do we want to go home when we can serve you until you collapse!Thank you for coming and we cannot wait to see all of your happy faces again soonLoveThe Enterprise
Maybe it's a not serious, but an in-joke between the pub and its regulars. Maybe I'm just not hip enough to see the warmth and deep but ironic levels of customer service and love that exude from the pub's every pore. Maybe when you go to the bar there's lots of joshing and banter. But I doubt it. And if it is a joke, clearly no one's told the hipsters of the Enterprise that jokes are meant to be funny.
I'm sure staff in most pubs in the UK need to occasionally vent their frustration and I fully support their right to do so. But to do it in public like this - this is the home page of the pub's website - is extraordinary. BLTP summed it up perfectly when he sent the link to me: graceless.
So if you drink in Camden, please, please don't drink in the Enterprise. They clearly don't want you there. In these difficult times, there are many other pubs that would welcome your money. Everyone will be happier.