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Next to Palena, WORST DC RESTAURANT WEBSITE EVER!  :lol:

Spend ten minutes at Kinkead's with your speakers on.

I just did the tour, speakers on: Palena, Kinkead's, IndeBleu

Rocks, I have to respectfully disagree. Indebleu's website alone is so obnoxious that it would dissuade me from eating there, let alone buying a Membership.

Palena's is just poor. I agree the Kinkead's piano music is mind numbing, but IndeBleu is a full-scale assault on the eyes, ears, and patience.

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helllooooo, i just saw this post. ok, map linking noted. we use a font that requires me to make pdfs that are then pasted into the hosting site. anyway, i didn't realize that you can't cut and pas

Go here, click on "I am under 21," sound on. Thank you, you fine, fine brewers.

And if you do give your hours, make sure they're correct and not some future expectation of hours! Azur, I'm talking to you. It's incredibly frustrating to have taken the time to double-check on the

I just did the tour, speakers on: Palena, Kinkead's, IndeBleu

Rocks, I have to respectfully disagree. Indebleu's website alone is so obnoxious that it would dissuade me from eating there, let alone buying a Membership.

Palena's is just poor. I agree the Kinkead's piano music is mind numbing, but IndeBleu is a full-scale assault on the eyes, ears, and patience.

I looked at IndeBleu's web site before it opened and was appalled. Mrs JPW, the graphic designer, was even more appalled.

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Most restaurant web sites are just god-awful. The best that I can think of if Sonomas, but even then they use flash. Flash is the most overused plugin on the internet today. I don't understand the need to have some fancy flash intro that takes a minute to load over a broadband connection.

Even worse though are the places that use those inner scroll bars like Citronelle. I HATE them. I'm constantly trying to use my scroll bar and then I realize that I have the use their stupid scroll bar and it's slow as....

Another pet peeve...Music in the background -- especially slow jazz.

I was very happy that davidgreggory.com got a makeover recently. Until then, I'd say it was the worst restaurant web site on the internet. But at least I haven't been able to find anyone using the "blinking text" tag recently.

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Flash is the most overused plugin on the internet today.

Even worse though are the places that use those inner scroll bars like Citronelle.

Another pet peeve...Music in the background -- especially slow jazz.

Colvin Run Tavern has got to have the most unintentionally ill-conceived background "music." Makes me want to . . . well, let's just say that it's supposed to be soothing and does not have that effect exactly.

Rosa Mexicano is just plain annoying. Not only does it fry the eyeballs and assault the ears, but notice how cleaverly they have managed to hide the actual restaurant menu, as opposed to the "on line shopping" list of products.

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I don't know, dude ... I've heard Corduroy's new one is going to be even worse. wink.gif

My last web site would have been the hands down loser of this thread. The pressure is on, but I can feel my new web site designer getting motivated . I know he'll do his best. Thanks for inspiring him Don. Edited by RWBooneJr.
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Most restaurant web sites are just god-awful. The best that I can think of if Sonomas, but even then they use flash. Flash is the most overused plugin on the internet today. I don't understand the need to have some fancy flash intro that takes a minute to load over a broadband connection.

The use of Flash is also stupid because this is Washington. Many people work for the government. Many government workers view these sites from their office. Many government workers do not HAVE Flash and can't add it in because they work for the government and are accessing from the office. Ta da.

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I'd like to nominate Hank's as a simple model of what a restaurant site should be. Notice how the crucial details (hours, phone, address) are at the bottom of every page. That's usually all I need. But you've got a nice story of the place, a fairly accurate menu, some press clips and even a nice contact form that doesn't automatically launch Outlook (my biggest peeve). Nice n simple...

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Rosa Mexicano is just plain annoying. Not only does it fry the eyeballs and assault the ears, but notice how cleaverly they have managed to hide the actual restaurant menu, as opposed to the "on line shopping" list of products.

What's amusing about the music is that it is the Gypsy Kings singing. They are a French band that sings Flamenco songs, not Mexican!

An unintentional message about the authenticity of the experience, isn't it.

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The best that I can think of is Sonomas, but even then they use flash. Flash is the most overused plugin on the internet today.

If you read the whole page, you see that Sonoma's site offers a "Skip Flash" option at the bottom of the home page....

I agree that Hank's is clean and recognizes that people just want basic information from a restaurant website.....

Along the same lines, Cashion's......http://www.cashionseatplace.com/

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Most restaurant web sites are just god-awful. The best that I can think of if Sonomas, but even then they use flash. Flash is the most overused plugin on the internet today. I don't understand the need to have some fancy flash intro that takes a minute to load over a broadband connection.

Rasika. UGH! By the time I got to something I could click on I didn't even want to be there anymore! Which is a shame, because once you finally get in, the site seems somewhat unique. But by the time I got there, I was just so turned off. The least they could do would be to put in a "skip intro" button. But I guess, then, the web designer wouldn't get to show off his/her work.

I would NEVER hire a designer whose portfolio included flash intros like these.

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Rasika. UGH!
Worse than the intro is how when you click on a link in the website the view pans aroundthe screen and then zooms in. I immediately felt unbalanced and thought I was going to become seasick.

Websites should not require Dramamine in order to view them. Terrible.

**Upon further review, I thought the section they had labeled "CRITICAL ACCLAIM" was amusing in its presumptuousness (is that a word?). Edited by RWBooneJr.
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Whoa.  I just went to the Rasika site to see what all the hullabaloo is about.  That's not right.  Excuse me while I go lay down until the room stops spinning. 

[Exaggerating--only slightly.]

It made me want to gouge my eyes out. I guess I'm not alone :)
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The Rasika site is stylish, current, and highly navigable.  But for the letter I's introductory feminine dance sequence, I think it's terrific.  You guys are nuts.

I like it too - once you get in. The wait while all the splash pages do their thing is a pain and almost negates the positives.

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I like it too - once you get in.  The wait while all the splash pages do their thing is a pain and almost negates the positives.

I can't get into the site at all. I mean, I can get the intro and the dancing I and all, but when I click on Menu or Bar or whatever, nothing happens. I don't have the level of Flash required to view the page... and I never will because I can't put new software on a government computer!

Only of trifling importance, I suppose. I mean, how many government workers could there be in DC? :)

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I can't get into the site at all. I mean, I can get the intro and the dancing I and all, but when I click on Menu or Bar or whatever, nothing happens. I don't have the level of Flash required to view the page... and I never will because I can't put new software on a government computer!
When you click on links, things slide sideways across the page. Or the page slides sideways. I'm not sure quite how to describe it.

I would like the design of the site if it just stayed still. The individual components are attractive. It's just hard for me to want to go eat at a restaurant when its website makes me feel nauseous :) . That said, I did make restaurant week reservations.

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is that supposed to be a belly dancer? a stripper? nothing says classy restaurant like the outline of a gyrating woman on their front-page.

that was my first thought upon viewing the site:

"is that a stripper?!?"

ick.

Edited by clayrae
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that was my first thought upon viewing the site:

"is that a stripper?!?"

ick.

My first thought was James Bond girl. But is that really much different than a stripper? :)

Anyway, minus the intro I think the large 'moving' page is rather interesting and new. Put me in the like camp.

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Jose Andres, your websites are killing me! Why the heck do I have to download a zip file to get any information about Minibar? Oh yeah, the fancy flash pages do not work on many work computers, so I can't see anything on your website other than headings!! ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!! <_<

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I went to the Rasika site to see what all the fuss was about. I then got dizzy, and vomited. And the silhouette of the dancing lady made me look over my shoulder, as if something were about to appear on my screen that might get me into trouble here at work.

And I HATE sites that highjack my entire screen. My display is huge and I like to stack my browser or application windows on top of one other.

This "flyover" effect might be good for some sites, but a restaurant web site needs to be simple and easy to navigate. It doesn't need to be a display of someone's amazing Flash prowess. All I need to see are up-to-date menus within reason, directions and/or contact information, hours of operation, reservation information if applicable, and perhaps as a bonus, some photos and history of the place.

Memo to From Scratch: Just because you won some sort of award for that Flash effect doesn't mean you have to run it into the ground. Lay off the caffeine or meth or whatever it is that is causing you to design web sites that induce vertigo <_<

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Putting aside my dislike of sites that automatically start playing music when you go to them, the IndeBleu site does not allow me to navigate the menu. A couple of items appear, and then I cannot scroll down to see the rest of the list. So, as far as I know, they have three "first courses," two "second courses," and two entrees.

And that just ain't right.

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While the abuses of Macromedia Flash by so-called web designers make my eyes roll, I suppose it's up to the restaurateur to decide if they like it or not, just as it's up to us diners to decide if we like the food and/or service.

Please, dear restaurant-people-with-website-responsibilities, do include a simple, elegant, HTML-only page on your site that contains phone numbers, addresses and hours of operation? Frequently I find myself doing a last minute Google search, sometimes from my cellphone (which knows nothing of Flash), trying to figure out if I can eat at your restaurant right now. And all too often that information(?) is easier to pry out of a Post review of dubious age than from the restaurant website, or I give up in frustration.

Indulge all you want in the pretty animations on the rest of the site. But when it comes to the key information that a diner needs, complicating the task of finding it is not in your own interest.

As Bartles and Jaymes used to say, we thank you for your support.

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As a consumer I visit a restaurant's website to gather the pertinent facts: menu and to confirm the hours and location.

As a graphic designer I cringe at the following: flash overkill, music, pdf menus (why should I download something easily posted in html????)

Rasika's opening page is pretty, but it goes downhill rapidly. I should be able to navigate it easily and I can't, until recently I couldn't navigate it at all. But as ironstomach points out unfortunately the consumers aren't the ones approving and paying for the website design!

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Restaurateurs/sommeliers:

How many of you do your wine list not on a computer? In some normal format, like Word or something, which can save out to RTF (or write to Acrobat). Is it so hard to e-mail an updated list to your web designer? Let's face it, after spending over half an hour with Bern's list in Tampa (and there's is on the web, but with no prices--ugh), sometimes I'd like to get a head start, so I don't bore my tablemates (and screw with your table-turning time). And for specialty lists like deep Burgundy lists or Zaytinya's, I may want to consult outside sources from time to time.

Please?

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Restaurateurs/sommeliers:

How many of you do your wine list not on a computer?  In some normal format, like Word or something, which can save out to RTF (or write to Acrobat).  Is it so hard to e-mail an updated list to your web designer?  Let's face it, after spending over half an hour with Bern's list in Tampa (and there's is on the web, but with no prices--ugh), sometimes I'd like to get a head start, so I don't bore my tablemates (and screw with your table-turning time).  And for specialty lists like deep Burgundy lists or Zaytinya's, I may want to consult outside sources from time to time.

Please?

Point taken & appreciated. But to briefly play devil's advocate, Jake, as with most "is it so hard" minute tasks, updating a website takes more time than you expect if you want the job done right. Depending on the size of the list, something as simple as sending an updated list in Word doesn't correlate equally with the amount of time it takes the designer to upload said file, and if you try to make it really simple for them & send a PDF of the list so they don't have to worry about spelling errors or formatting, you get zinged with the fact that people hate having to download the menu on the site (see up thread). Restaurants have holes in their lists all the time - either due to a run on ordering on a busy Saturday night or the distributor ran out of a given vintage. How much time do you think it takes to line edit the existing online version of a significant list? Better yet, can you appreciate how daunting that task is when by the time you get the thing updated, the list has changed again? <_< Also consider that some restaurants maintain their own websites, and are just trying to keep up on a daily basis. ;) Just some food for thought from the daunted.

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Point taken & appreciated.  But to briefly play devil's advocate, Jake, as with most "is it so hard" minute tasks, updating a website takes more time than you expect if you want the job done right.  Depending on the size of the list, something as simple as sending an updated list in Word doesn't correlate equally with the amount of time it takes the designer to upload said file, and if you try to make it really simple for them & send a PDF of the list so they don't have to worry about spelling errors or formatting, you get zinged with the fact that people hate having to download the menu on the site (see up thread). Restaurants have holes in their lists all the time - either due to a run on ordering on a busy Saturday night or the distributor ran out of a given vintage.  How much time do you think it takes to line edit the existing online version of a significant list?  Better yet, can you appreciate how daunting that task is when by the time you get the thing updated, the list has changed again?  <_<   Also consider that some restaurants maintain their own websites, and are just trying to keep up on a daily basis. ;)   Just some food for thought from the daunted.

I think for significant (30+ page) wine lists, PDF shouldn't be an issue for users. And I understand your point.

But so many restaurants put their "list" on their site, only for it to go out of date quickly that it becomes just as misinforming as most of those google-ad-grubbing non-sites that purport to have locations, hours, and "reviews." Or the ones who put their lists up, with no prices. That's just condescending.

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I think for significant (30+ page) wine lists, PDF shouldn't be an issue for users.  And I understand your point. 

But so many restaurants put their "list" on their site, only for it to go out of date quickly that it becomes just as misinforming as most of those google-ad-grubbing non-sites that purport to have locations, hours, and "reviews."  Or the ones who put their lists up, with no prices.  That's just condescending.

I agree that it would be super for restaurants with deep lists to have them online BUT only if the online list is really accurate and updated. I don't want to get all set to enjoy a special bottle of wine only to arrive and find out it hasn't been poured in months. As for pricing --- perhaps they don't want their competitors to see their list and prices?

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As for pricing --- perhaps they don't want their competitors to see their list and prices?

It's easy enough for other places to scope this stuff out. And remember, high-end restaurants in a given area are all buying from basically the same pool of available wine--what distributors carry, what they can buy direct, what filters out on the secondary market (in some areas), and what private cellars come up for sale. Only in the last (very rare) case could one place have a significant advantage over another (if the private cellar seller goes to that place first), resources being equal.

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OK. I'm totally whoring myself out here, but I can't help myself. Any restaurant that wants an easy to update web site where they can update the menu, phone number and whatever info they want to keep up to date should PM or email me. I can set you up with a simple content management system that allows you to update your menus if 5 minutes or less. Seriously, this is simple stuff and if your web designer is telling you that it can't be done, or it's really difficult or expensive to do, they're just plain lying to you.

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Last night I endured the aggravation that is Kinkead's menu website, since Mr. S and I have reservations this Saturday. I would love to know what might be on their seasonal menu--are they offering shad roe this year? any other spring delights?

After several minutes of clicking and scrolling, and accidentally ending up somewhere in the lunch menu several times, I determined that the dinner menu on the website contains only their standards, and doesn't seem to have been updated in a couple of years. <_<

I wish they would provide a regular, html page, or even a pdf file, that would show the whole menu at once, rather than leaving the viewer to try to guess which subheading might hold the information she seeks.

On a more general note, Mr. S and I like to print out menus, rather than sit at the computer and read on screen. So many menus are not at all printable--Kinkead's is one of the worst! Many others print out in type too small to read. Very frustrating!

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