At approximately 1:20 PM today, Tuesday, November 3rd, I called the number provided to me in the Perkins review comments by "Jon Sanborn." I reached the Perkins Customer Hotline or something to that effect, and asked if a Jon Sanborn worked there. Much to my surprise, the woman on the other end verified that he does indeed work there, although she told me that he was out at time. I left my name, number, and my reason for calling, and was told that Mr. Sanborn would call my back at a later time.
At 1:32 PM, I received a call from Mr. Sanborn, and had a very pleasant chat with him. What follows is the story that Jon told me, of how he found my blog and the harrowing epic of how my French dip came to look more like a grilled cheese:
Apparently on Monday mornings his boss in Minneapolis does internet searches for Perkins reviews, and happened to stumble on my humble blog. She showed it to Mr. Sanborn, who read my review and was shocked at what he saw. He too was baffled at the bread that I received, and his first thought was that maybe the waitress had written my order down wrong and somehow I had been given a roast beef sandwich or some such. But he soon realized that I was given everything indicative of a French dip except the bread. Mr. Sanborn called the restaurant and was told by the kitchen that they were out of the proper bread required for French dips all Sunday. What was supposed to happen is the waitress was suppose to inform me that they were out of hoagie bread and ask me if I still wanted a French dip and if so what kind of bread I wanted with it. This obviously did not happen, and there must have been a miscommunication somewhere along the line. He reiterated again and again that this whole situation was unacceptable and should never have happened. I would like to say that I hope my waitress was not at fault, as she was awesome. Just saying.
Mr. Sanborn told me that I should have informed a manager of my displeasure, but what I wanted was to review the John Q. Public Perkins French dip experience, the French dip anyone would receive at this establishment, not the candy-ass "my bread isn't righhhhht" French dip. As it seems that the planets and stars aligned perfectly for this restaurant not to have the correct bread, and not it just being a special way that this location makes French dips, the review I wrote was probably not indicative of the experience someone would have going even today. One should take that into consideration when reading the review in question.
Mr. Sanborn was apologetic for what had happened and wanted to make it up to me. So he told me that he would mail me a Perkins gift certificate! Please realize, Perkins found me out to make this situation right, I did not complain to them. If this indicative of how their franchise is run, all I can say is, "Thank you, Perkins, for putting the customer first." About how to use my compensation, fret not faithful readers, this gift certificate will only go back into purchasing more French dips for ingestion and judging, as I wish not to profit from the deeds I undertake selflessly reviewing everyone's favorite sandwiches of perfect harmony.
I informed Mr. Sanborn that in late January I would be in Madison again, and that I would love to review the same Perkins' French dip again. He told me that he doesn't really care what I do with my blog, just that he wants me to be happy. If any of his superiors are reading this blog, no words better summarize this man's commitment to his customers than those uttered by the centurion during Jesus crucifixion: "Truly, this man was the Son of great customer service." (Mark 15:39)
Well, after such a pleasant chat with the man, and considering the kindness Perkins has shown me in the past, nothing would make me happier than returning to the Perkins on University Ave in Madison and re-reviewing their French dip, and this time it will hopefully earn a score that Jon and I both know it deserves!
Look for my re-review of Perkins coming in the end on January. Until then, I will continue to scour the globe for great French dips, and bring my findings back to you, French dip connoisseurs of the world!