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Sobo - a change of ownership?

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Friday 28 January 2011 5.03pm
There is now a pavement board that says Lavazza, though - I find it hard to believe that the previous owner used Lavazza coffee. Coffee-shop proprietors who are really serious about coffee - as the previous owner seemed to be - tend to get their beans from roasteries rather than massive industrial coffee conglomerates, which is what many consider Lavazza to be these days. In the trade, Lavazza is not generally synonymous with great coffee, which is what Sobo once served (and which, to be fair, had been going downhill long before the change in ownership).
Friday 28 January 2011 8.02pm
Oh lor, the reviews section postings are sad. I suppose you have to give the guy credit for trying hard! Actually, I now realise that one thing I didn't like when I was there the other day - along with the awful food photos in the windows - was the slight sense of desperation... owner standing inside the window looking out for customers ... extra boards appearing outside with freebie offers ... nothing wrong with freebie offers, you might say, and as I type this I realise it's sounding horrible, but it's the truth.

And, for me, (over and above the food) a big part of what SoBo had going for it was a sense of clean lines and uncluttered style. I often disliked the art, for example, but I loved the assurance and detailed attention to its presentation. So I was also put off the other day by the fact that the trees in pots in the back yard have been crowded against the side wall along with some rubbish, and the loo - which, because it's old needs to be kept particularly immaculate - was looking a bit uncared-for.

But the music wasn't loud and the service was friendly. I only had a cuppa, but the cakes looked nice, and it's good to hear the scrambled eggs are still tasty. Still really hoping it'll find its feet and be successful:)
Friday 28 January 2011 10.24pm
I AM THE NEW owner of the cafe, i have been reading your comments about sobo, i would like to answer some questions,
the coffee is still the same coffee(for those who does not want to beleive can come and have a look at it),
the art work is still from the same galery and will be changed every month as i have changed them today, everything i done so far to go an extra mile did not work so i have removed all of them, now the sobo is the sobo as it used to be,
if i were you i would go to the cafe and would tell this to the owner so that he can do something about it but you all choose to advertise ur commets online,

i think people should be open to new thing this is what the life is about and i now see that you guys used to see old things and just want to see what you think of. you would not want to see new thing would you?

i read a comment about the chocolte that i put in the fridge, someone goes now it look kebebish, i am just wondering where would you want me to put the chocolate(kitkat)they should be kept in the fridge, i think you do not know about this so read some health ans safety booklets :)

i think these are the not the real reasons , the real reason is that you used to see the old owner and are not ready to see another one,

of couse when a business change hands this obvisly effect the business , every of you knows this better than me because you guys are in the business more than i do as this is the only first one for me ,i think everything would be easier if you told me what you were not happy with rather than complaining about everything and wasting your time online,
Friday 28 January 2011 10.50pm
Hello Taylan,
I must admit to have never been in SOBO, but I would just like to impart a bit of advice. Take it or leave it.
I suspect from your post that you would like disgruntled customers to talk to you directly. That's a good idea and I hope it works. However your post comes over as defensive, patronising and downright rude.
It would have been much better if you had said something along the lines of, "I appreciate your comments and I would kindly ask that you approach me in the shop in order that we can improve our service to you".
I understand that some of the comments were very critical, but it is in your interest to address those criticisms in a constructive, polite manner.
I genuinely hope that you are successful in your venture, as TBR needs some serious improvement.
Friday 28 January 2011 10.55pm
Taylan, rather than ranting at your customers, a more pleasant & courteous approach would be much more positive.

This is a Forum, where local people can talk about whatever they wish - but I agree that the comments would be better said directly to you, so you can respond to the person.

I haven't been into SoBo recently and I will pop in to see what all the 'fuss' is about - although having read your submission, I wonder whether I should bother.
Friday 28 January 2011 11.38pm
I've never been there and I don't think I ever will now.
Saturday 29 January 2011 9.12am
I don't know what all the fuss is about. Doesn't Taylan have a right to defend himself.

A lot of people come on to this website and slate businesses "anonymously". It can be extremely upsetting and downright rude most of the time.
Maybe he could have come onto the site and written a better message but maybe he's just at the end of his tether and ranted (like alot of contributors) to get it off his chest.

I have never been there but now I probably will to show my support!
Saturday 29 January 2011 10.13am
I agree with earlier posts that Taylan's attitude is disrepectful of the customers he's trying to hang on to, regardless of whether he needed to get anything off his chest.

I used to visit Sobo almost every day as part of my routine. The place was stylish, with a nice vibe, the music interesting. The coffee beans were from a local roasting company -so if they've not changed, why the Lavazza sign outside,eh? The ingredients were high quality and interesting(sometime I wondered how they ever made any money there, perhaps they didn't, as their deliveries came from Ocado). Last time I ate there the bacon was fatty & salty and it simply wasn't what had been served before. They didn't serve ruddy Kitkats - that's the point!

The menu has changed, as have the vibe, food, drinks and the decor. If Taylan hasn't got the sense to take this feedback as frank advice about what is costing him customers, rather than describing it as us wasting time online, then he doesn't deserve the trade.

And the strange coincidence that a positive review was posted from the same place as his posts... How rude to underestimate the people around you.
Saturday 29 January 2011 11.45am
the points raised here all seem to suggest Sobo has been taken downmarket. But, i suppose, that is the prerogative of the owner. On the other hand his rant on here seemed rather OTT and consumers have the right to their opinions, and the right to share them with others. Look at the success of trip adviser for instance. These days the customer rules and people like taylan just have to get used to it. I liked the old Sobo. I have no intention of frequenting it now.
Saturday 29 January 2011 12.13pm
I've done both - spoken to the staff and posted here, with positive as well as negative feedback.

But of course if you're setting up a business it's hard to have your personal input questioned.

If the place had been crowded and obviously doing well I probably wouldn't have posted, just decided it had changed and maybe wasn't really for me anymore. But as it's clearly still finding its feet, this thread was already in existence, discussion on this forum is generally pretty fair, balanced and constructive, and Taylan had said he was open to feedback, it seemed worthwhile.

I think the problem's partly to do with the particular business he's bought. The good news is that it's a well-loved coffee shop to which a large customer-base has felt personally attached. And the bad news is that it's a well-loved coffee shop to which a large customer-base has felt personally attached!

Anyway I hope I haven't been wasting my time and that some of what I've said may be helpful to Taylan. But I won't post on this one again.
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