Boners BBQ Apologizes For Ridiculing Dissatisfied Customer On Facebook

Perhaps the kids over at Boners BBQ in Atlanta are sick and tired of being picked on for the restaurant’s name, or else they just can’t take a negative review. Either way, immaturity reigned, as one diner says she was called out on Boners’ Facebook page after she had a bad dining experience and left a negative review online.

Stephanie took her husband out for a birthday meal to Boners BBQ, the home of the terrible tagline “Put a little south in your mouth,” and found the food lacking, says CBS Atlanta. So she did what any consumer would do in her shoes, and voiced her opinion via a review on

“I just merely commented and just gave a review based on my experience and the response to that has been astonishing,” she said.

The owner of Boners wasn’t about to take that lying down — he fired back at Stephanie via a comment on the restaurant’s Facebook page.

It read: “NOT WANTED! (Stephanie S.) left waitress 0.00 tip on a $40 tab after she received a Scoutmob discount. If you see this woman in your restaurant tell her to go outside…” and included a vulgar insult using profanity, says CBS. It also included what appears to be one of Stephanie’s Facebook photos with the post.

“To put me up as an object of ridicule for that is probably the best example of how not to run a business,” she said, adding that she had more than $7 in cash as a tip.

CBS says they spoke with the owner, and his excuse for being such a brat was that he made a bad decision, and went to far. He apologized, saying “he’s been overworked and overstressed with a slew of people not leaving tips and he got caught up in the heat of the moment.”

The offending post has been taken down, and replaced with an apology post from the owner.

Dear, Stephanie S. – We are truly sorry, it was a bonehead move on our part. But more importantly – it was rude to you and an inappropriate use of social media, which has been a driving force for our business because we can’t afford traditional advertising. We rely on word-of-mouth. Your experience was yours to share and not mine to abuse. Boners BBQ is my passion and my life. Please give me the opportunity to serve you again at our expense- if not please allow me to fully refund your money on me.

Perhaps he should’ve said it was a “bonerheaded” move?

BBQ restaurant apologizes for blasting customer online [CBS News Atlanta]


Edit Your Comment

  1. TheMansfieldMauler says:

    Another small business owner done in by a mostly unnecessary social media presence and failure to understand the intertoobs. And by being an ass.

  2. tbax929 says:

    I hate leaving a cash tip when I pay by credit card. I always worry I’ll look cheap, even though I know I’ve tipped.

    • dolemite says:

      From what I understand, they’d prefer a cash tip over credit card, since they can pocket a dollar or 2 of cash, and turn in the rest to the pot. I always leave “CASH” in the tip line, so they don’t know what I left (and can’t write anything in).

      • El_Fez says:

        That’s why I always leave cash when I can – so they can claim whatever they want on their tax forms.

        • Reno Raines says:

          I think they should claim exactly what they earned on their tax forms just like everyone else does. If a credit card tip helps that I will continue to tip on my credit card.

          • whogots is "not computer knowledgeable" says:

            The problem is that servers are often taxed on some minimum percentage of their cash sales, plus their actual credit card tips. If they get a disproportionate number of cash-wielding douchecanoes and old ladies dining alone, or just one big fractious table that monopolizes their section for the whole shift, it’s going to ruin their take and they’ll be taxed on money they didn’t make. Having worked that kind of shift a few times when I was a kid, I tip in cash. If you don’t want to be part of that equation at all, then yes, keep tipping on the credit card.

      • Tiffymonster says:

        I thought the tip amount is estimated at 15 or 20% and they have to pay taxes based on that whether they earn a tip or not.

    • Hi_Hello says:

      i do cash tip whenever I can, but I hand the tip to the wait staff. I don’t like living it on the table.

    • CoachTabe says:

      I always write “on table” or “cash” in the tip line if I’m paying by CC but tipping with cash.

      • tbax929 says:

        I like this idea. I always feel like a jerk when I write “$0” on the tip line. Maybe I’ll do the “On Table” thing instead. Thanks!

    • SJActress says:

      I am a bartender and people will sometimes leave me cash tips, but leave the “Tip” part of the CC receipts blank. I always write “Table” on them (even though I don’t actually serve to tables) so I know they weren’t jerks when I’m adjusting my CC tips at the end of the shift.

    • kc2idf says:

      Write the words “cash on table” into the tips slot on the credit card slip. This is what I do.

  3. Rocket says:

    *giggle* Boners

  4. RandomHookup says:

    “[W]ent to far” where? Far Rockaway? Far East? Far side of the Moon?

    • TheBusDriver says:

      If she “had $7 in cash as a tip”, how come she did not leave a tip? Or did someone leave out a word?

      • Conformist138 says:

        Easy: He claims she left no tip (and she didn’t tip via her credit card). She says she did leave a cash tip. It’s not that the story is reporting wrong, just that one is a liar. And I think I know which one.

  5. Remmy75 says:

    Someone needs to buy this guy a copy of how to win friends and influence people.

  6. Cat says:

    Boners are my passion and my life, too.

    I feel his pain.

  7. dolemite says:

    He said she left 0 tip, then after she said she left $7 on a $40 meal, he said he still thinks 10% should be the minimum. She left a 17% tip.

  8. vizsladog says:

    Does anybody proofread these things?

  9. El_Fez says:

    Yeah, but did he get a tattoo on his Boners?

    • Taed says:

      And to add another timely Consumerist reference to that, if you do get “Boners” tatooed on your penis, you get to eat there free for a year! (Although you have to show your “identification” at each visit, and unfortunately, they punch a hole in it. You know, to prevent abuse of the system and stuff.)

  10. ca_little says:

    This place isn’t too far away. I totally need to eat there now, so I can say I ate a Boner.

  11. TerpBE says:

    I wonder if the owner would have been so hard on her if he realized she didn’t actually stiff the waitress.

  12. suez says:

    Gee, do you think there might be a connection between having a tipping problem and general poor customer service? Naaaah!

  13. steve says:

    “To put me up as an object of ridicule for that is probably the best example of how not to run a business,” she said, adding that she had more than $7 in cash as a tip.

    They need to take a look at the bus boys. I bet they are stealing the tips.

  14. Scooter McGee says:

    It went further than what you see above. View the link for what continued after the apology was posted above.

    • dolemite says:

      After reading that (especially the last comment about the water boarding)…I suddently remember why I don’t participate in social media outside of a few blog forum posts!

    • Doubting thomas says:

      I don’t think people who don’t tip should be waterboarded. They should be subjected to actual torture instead.

  15. TheCorporateGeek Says Common Sense Is The Key says:

    WTF do people in Atlanta know about BBQ anyway?
    Immature…..yeah the name says it all…if you need a tagline such as that to get your word out then you have no business in the business to begin with.

    Concerned that customers weren’t tipping…….look internally for the issue.

    I’ll keep my Carolina and Texas BBQ, Atlanta should stick to their Chicken & Waffles

  16. Cat says:

    I make my own Boners at home.

  17. longfeltwant says:

    All things considered, I bet the woman was in the wrong. But I wasn’t there, so my presumptions are premised on ignorance.

    • little stripes says:

      How do you gather that? She didn’t like the food so she left a review saying as much. Taste is subjective. It’s clear that she didn’t say anything really negative about anything else, because if she had, I’m sure the owner would have shared that with us.

      So why do you think she was in the wrong? Be honest here.

    • whylime says:

      Wait what? How is she in the wrong? You can find her review on yelp. It was pretty well-written, and all her complaints were reasonable. She didn’t bitch about her experience, but instead provided a list of things she did and did not like about her food. Nothing in her review
      warranted the response she received from Boners BBQ. And to post her facebook photo too? Not cool.

      As for their claim that she didn’t tip, she says that she paid $7 in cash as tip on her $40 (before discount) tab, which is 17%. I find it easier to believe her, as she was actually there, rather than the owner, who did not serve her.

  18. little stripes says:

    Actually … that is a really great apology. It isn’t one of those non-apologies. No, “Sorry you were offended” in site. Good job, Bonehead.

  19. Coelacanth says:

    I think it might be a bit too soon to applaud their “heartfelt” apology. Read the link that crsofr posted…. towards the end.

  20. The Bunk says:

    So Paul Christoforo is now in the BBQ business? Outstanding.

  21. blueman says:

    That’s a great apology. No “I’m sorry if anyone was offended.” He knew he screwed up big-time and he totally owned it. Based on that alone I’d be willing to give the place a try.

  22. little stripes says:

    Yeah I thought so, too, but look at the last picture of the “likes” left to one asshole commenter:

    Yeah. :/

  23. deadandy says:

    Let the Yelp-bomb commence.

    “I’ve never eaten here but I hate rude owners! 1 star”
    “I live in Detroit but I support the owner’s right to free speech! 5 stars”

  24. AtlantaCPA says:

    I consider myself an amateur Atlanta BBQ taster and I’ve never heard of this place. Just sayin…

  25. drblair says:

    Their first mistake was thinking they could open a B.B.Q place outside of Memphis, Texas, or South Carolina.

    • AtlantaCPA says:

      Oh Snap, those are fighting words! (I’m from North Carolina myself but there are also plenty of great regional BBQs that are each great in their own way)

    • Jules Noctambule says:

      My Eastern Carolina sauce disagrees with that statement just like the sticky syrup Texas calls barbecue sauce disagrees with me.

  26. some.nerd says:

    Wow, that’s quite a boner they pulled!

  27. Jillia says:

    “The ticket was $40 even minus $10 for the coupon + tax= $32.80 We dropped two twenties on the table and left.”

    Perhaps there was some confusion with the coupon? Maybe he saw that the ticket was $40 and that they left $40. Either way, it’s no excuse for inappropriate behavior and middle school name calling that is just blowing my mind. He’s obviously pissed about people not leaving tips, but really, maybe you should stop and take a look at your own attitude and consider WHY people aren’t tipping. Shitty service, dishonest bus boys perhaps…

    Considering this place was on a groupon-like site, Stephanie mentions that no one was in the restaurant, and the all-kinds-of-suck attitude going on with the owner (which I can imagine would trickle down) I wouldn’t be surprised if this place lasted the year.

  28. Hi_Hello says:

    one of the links had the owner said something about him and his screw working 8 months without pay…
    isn’t there some sort of labor law that require the owner to pay his staff min. wage if they don’t make min. wage through tip??

    Maybe this law doesn’t apply to Atlantic…

    shouldn’t the department of labor or something go after this guy??

    • LionMan says:

      Sounds like only relatives of the owner work there. Doesn’t matter too much since it looks like they’ll be out of business soon. The only thing they have going for them is they’re close to Braves Stadium.

  29. AngryK9 says:

    With a name like Boner’s, it has to be….well, you know….

  30. polishhillbilly says:

    Customer Service is easy, if broken down to it’s simplest form. Treat others as you expect to be treated. A customer calls you because they have a issue or problem, solve it fast, and make that customer happy, but within reason.

    I have’t found a bbq joint I like either, so I learned how to operate a smoker, and have never went back to a bbq place again.

  31. chemmy says:

    *adds to list of places to never give one single cent to*

  32. shufflemoomin says:

    “…with a slew of people not leaving tips…” Pay your staff a decent wage, raise your prices a little to cover it and then everyone’s happy.