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Chronicle's Syd Kearney Whines Over Restaurant Flooded with 'Foodies'

Sometimes a popular restaurant can turn into a jungle.

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Social media has its pros and cons as one well-regarded local journalist discovered today. Houston Chronicle's Syd Kearney visited a Spring restaurant for lunch and noticed it was packed with a hoard of local food lovers who took nearly every table and seat available. The crowd was attributed to The Woodlands/ Spring area,Tx. Foodie Club, a restaurant enthusiast group on Facebook, which Kearney is a member and found out about the eatery through), and frequently arrange lunch gatherings on Fridays. Kearney, however missed the memo. Her first experience there went downhill quickly: 50 minute wait for a burger that was cold, no attention given to her while all the focus seemed to be on the the large group and a host of other issues.

Naturally, Kearney wrote about her experience on Houston Chronicle's food blog, withholding the restaurant's name (5 Ate Cafe in case you were wondering). The post made its way into the group where some members empathized while others criticized the veteran writer, suggesting Kearney talk with the owner so they could accommodate her. But should she? And if the group was given preferential treatment as Kearney alludes to, was it fair? So many unanswered questions and different points of views to consider, which brings up a topic addressed by Eater Montreal Editor Ian Harrison yesterday: should restaurants treat food bloggers, food groups, and writers differently than other patrons and should those people who's (supposedly unbiased) opinions influence others accept the preferential treatment?

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