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Posted by Kristin on 03/16/2009
The service was unimaginably bad, rude, obnoxious and humiliating. 3 of us ordered 2 appetizers, 3 entrees and a bottle of wine and were told by the owner/server told us to order more and spend more money. When we were finished, he came to clear our plates and when we asked if we could box the leftovers, he just stopped and stared at us as if we couldn't be serious, then he ROLLED HIS EYES, sighed, and agreed. It was bad, and then got worse. He came back and I mentioned that I had a gift certificate from http://restaurant.com and he immediately YELLED at us that it is only for parties of 4 or more. NOWHERE on the certificate does it say this. I mentioned that , and even offered to order another entree to take home, but he kept waving dismissively, pushing the gift certificate away, talking loudly over me and saying over and over, only parties of four or more, and yelling, NO at us over and over again when we tried to ask how we could make it better. Did I mention that we had told him it was our first time eating there and this was how he was treating a new customer? I wouldn't treat another human being so rudely and meanly, let alone a paying customer. I was humiliated and finally just asked if we could have the bill. My friends and I waited forever while the whole restaurant sat in unease while he went to get our check and examine it for 5 minutes. Finally he came over and said he'd take the gift certificate off our bill as though he was doing us a big favor, but told us that we had to pay the rest of our bill (over $60 after the gift certificate was taken out) in cash, with gratuity not included (not that he deserved a tip, but even though I was close to tears at this point, I felt like we had to leave one. I'm stupid, I know). We didn't have enough cash on us for a tip, so my boyfriend had to run and get cash at an ATM across the street (while the owner waited and KNEW that we had to do this, and could have offered to let us use a credit card at any time). We paid and tipped 14% though I've never felt more certain that it was undeserved. Not once did we receive an apology for how we were treated. Our experience at Maza ruined our entire day. The food was okay, but the lamb we ordered was overcooked, gray and tough and most everything was salted with a heavy hand and very vinegary. I will never go back and not only will I not recommend Maza to anyone, but I will WARN them against coming and having such a traumatic, awful experience.
Posted by Renate & Matt on 01/25/2009
As Europeans, we have our problems with the "American service standard", i.e. read the menu in 3 minutes, order quickly, eat even quicker and get the check on the table as soon as you tell the waiter that you don't want a dessert with a friendly "no hurry" that actually means "please pay and go - NOW!". We enjoyed Maza not only because the food was excellent and very authentic, but also because we felt we were welcome to stay as long as we want, to enjoy our dinner without a time slot set by somebody else and because the atmosphere was quiet with a nice background music and no television. It was really like eating in a restaurant in Europe and not in a train station. The service was excellent and very friendly. The prices are reasonable, the quality superb and the Lebanese wine was perfect for this type of Mediterranean food. We will definitely go to Maza again. If you are not on the run but looking for stress-free dining, then Maza is the place to go. We are truly happy that we discovered this gem in Chicago.
Posted by Margrit & Peter on 11/12/2008
We have eaten at Maza several times, always found the food to be excellent, the menu imaginative, the service friendly and personal....and all in all, a fine value.
Posted by Amy E on 09/15/2008
The hummus was good, the stuffed lamb was great, but the service was atrocious. The waiter, possibly the owner, was very jovial, but he was the only person working the whole room, except for 2 people who appeared to only take orders from the sole waiter. The meal took about three times long as a normal meal at a restaurant does.
Posted by Bojim on 05/08/2008
This has to be the best middle eastern restaurant in chicago. It is a simple, small, but elegant space, so it gets crowded and it can take a while to get your meals, but it is well worth it in the end. I have had just about everything on the menu and have never been disappointed.
Posted by Anonymous on 11/15/2007
small portions , very salty! lack of attentivness on owner and staff, unless you were in a large party..
Posted by Ryan on 10/06/2006
The service is great, but avoid weekend evenings. Larger parties require more attention from the staff, and smaller parties will experience slower service. Despite this, the food is fantastic. Ignore the 'expensive' tag. This place can deliver an appetizer feast for a very reasonable price.