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Ole Barn

Thompsons Station, TN

#44 May 22, 2013
Hello everyone. I am one of the family members who own the Ole Barn. So, I think it's time to comment on this topic. We have never commented prior to this regardless of what many say. Employees were told not to take part in online discussions as well.
I will be the first to say when we first opened it was tough. It was an all new crew, owner's that were basically new to the business and a building that had hurdles to overcome. We had many educated and experienced people employed and like us they were thrown for a loop due to the 2 levels, dumbwaiters and amount of customers swamping us early on. BUT, that was nearing 1.5 years ago. Since then things have drastically improved!

I know you read some reviews not good but I have learned people not pleased are the ones making note of it online while the thousands we serve that are happy feel no need to boast about it. It's the nature of the beast. If you don't like country cooking you will not like our place.
Many recipes are local and from our own family's past. Are they all from scratch? No, but no restaurant of size can make everything from scratch. Scratch on all items would take forever and not be cost effective. However many are from scratch. We have never advertised all scratch made items. I think my Grandmothers would be proud of our food and yes they were ole time country cooks.

Beginning in January of this year I started comment cards at the Ole Barn. This was to get opinions on what could be improved. Over 1,500 were filled out. They were given on certain days and to all customers (not just the happy ones or on those days where all went great). Of those filled out over 90% were VERY complimentary. Less than 2% were bad. The remaining didn't love it but would come back. That told me we had come a very long way. Over 50 different additional foods were requested by those people with not much consistency.
In the beginning we were told by many restaurant suppliers/owners that you shoot to please 90%. I don't agree with that. We aim to please 100%. I know it's not possible but still go for it. I can have 100 people find me to tell me how great it is at the Ole Barn but 1 bad comment is the thing I always remember. That's just the way I and my family are.
Here's the bottom line. I can't imagine a family working harder in this business than mine does. My 76 year old father is there every day. He lives and breathes this place. He wants to please everyone that walks through the doors. It's a 7 day a week journey. We do enjoy it and enjoy making customers happy. It's hard work and nobody is getting rich doing it but we are committed. No corners are cut with the food. We by quality items and go the extra yard preparing it. Like all others we are not perfect. To be perfect we would need a crystal ball, mind readers and unlimited bank account. That will never happen. We do strive for it though. And please stop comparing our kitchen to your's or your Granny's. They cooked for 20 people and we are cooking for hundreds each day. Trust me it's not the same. Want to hear something bad about Shirley's or The Farmer's Daughter, don't ask me. I am friends with one owner and eaten at both places. I want them and ourselves to succeed. There are over a half a million people living in our area. That's plenty to go around to each of our fine restaurants.

Thanks to all those eating at our restaurant. We appreciate and need you. And for those that didn't like it this year, I'm sorry you are in that 2% group. We sure tried to please you. For those that liked it, come back! Thanks for reading.
John Ayers
Tom

Johnson City, TN

#45 May 22, 2013
Well with all you have said Mr.Ayers it sounds good now how about stop breaking the Disabilities Act Laws and put a few Handicap spaces near the front door of the barn?
Ole Barn

Thompsons Station, TN

#46 May 26, 2013
Tom,
The front parking lot has been finished for over a year now. Since being completed we have had 2 handicap parking spots painted and marked off just in front of the main entrance. We do get many handicapped customers every weekend.
As for our food being "good", like we all know that's a matter of opinion. Yes, most think it's good but I am sure there will be a small percentage that doesn't like it. It's impossible to please everyone but we do try our best.
who dat

Elizabethton, TN

#47 May 26, 2013
WELL SAID OLE BARN I HAVE A BUSINESS IN THIS AREA AND IT IS TUFF.PEOPLE THINK IF YOU HAVE A BUSINESS AROUND HERE YOUR LOADED,WORK WHEN YOU WANT TO,TAKE OFF WHEN YOU WANT THEY SEE OUR STORE HOURS AND THINK HUH THATS NICE HOURS TO HAVE THEY DONT SEE ALL THE EXTRA HOURS WE PUT IN WITH PAPERWORK,ORDERING,STAFF ISSUES,ECT.,ECT.SO I HAVE LEARNED MOST COMPLAINERS COMPLAIN ABOUT EVERYTHING,DONT HAVE A JOB DONT WANT A JOB AND WILL NEVER GET A JOB IF THEY CAN HELP IT.THATS THE WORLD WE LIVE IN NOW.PAY NO ATTENTION ONCE YOU GET YOUR ESTABLISHMENT SET AND RUNNING LET IT GO IGNORE THE JEALOUSY RUMORS DO YOUR BEST AND FORGOT THE REST ITS NOT WORTH GRIEVING OVER.AND WITH THAT ILL SAY THIS MY WIFE AND ANOTHER COUPLE WAS GOING OUT TO EAT ONE AND THE OTHER COUPLE HAD HEARD HOW BAD THE OLE BARN WAS SO I SUGGESTED WE GIVE IT A TRY TO FIND OUT FOR OURSELVES SO WE DID AND IT WAS DELICIOUS!!!!!! SO I EXPLAINED TO THEM ABOUT NEVER GO BY HEARSAY CAUSE YOU ONLY HEAR THE BAD NOT THE GOOD.SO NOW YOU HAVE FOUR NEW CUSTOMERS FOR LIFE.
satisfied customer

Jonesborough, TN

#48 May 26, 2013
We have been to the Old Barn numerous times and love it. One time when we went just before closing time we got some hard biscuits. My husband is notoriously critical and outspoken and he really likes it, especially the fried chicken and meatloaf. The day he had meatloaf the owner stopped by our table to ask if it was good. He said his son had had some early in the day and called him to come taste it. He tried the first batch and it was rubbery and he tossed it and started over. Not a big choice of desserts but by that time I'm so full it doesn't matter.
Ole Barn

Thompsons Station, TN

#49 May 26, 2013
who dat,
Thanks for trying us even though you heard bad things. I hope others do that.
satisfied customer,
Sorry about the hard biscuits. Like I stated above we have our moments where something happens. Slow times is the hardest for keeping the bread fresh. That was me that tasted the meatloaf. I leave slightly early on Sundays and tasted it just before leaving. I didn't like it and called my father to do something about it.
allen s

Sweetwater, TN

#50 May 8, 2014
Great food. Always fresh... great service.. love it

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