Bitter Oven?


There’s a feeling of rebirth surrounding the Busy Chef/Oven/UCG trio of eateries, as documented in the recent BHA Newsletter. A feature about the businesses reveals plans to expand to other areas of Brooklyn and into Manhattan. (Not to mention Zipcar members getting discounts in the Heights too!)

Former Oven manager Chris Fehlingher, recently left the establishments and has relaunched the Sh*tty Tipper Database area of his Along with the Bitterwaitress message board for restaurant employee gossip, the STD (as its fans call it) was quite popular a few years ago with its alleged real life tales of famous people tipping badly. This week, a Beta version of the new STD launched with a curious entry mentioning BC/Oven/UCG partner Alan Young as a bad tipper:

the man owns the f**king place, and decided to not properly because the server – who was very busy making the f**ker money – forgot to break the bills down. loser.

While the veracity of that claim can’t be confirmed, it’s interesting that Young would be plucked out of obscurity and singled out on the STD. Is this Brooklyn Heights’ version of the recent Porchetta debacle?

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  • rms

    Both of these accounts say a lot about the state of the restaurants: Failing to leave small bills is a pretty boneheaded thing for a waiter to do, but this Young guy hasn’t been nearly successful enough with these restaurants to carry so much attitude with his employees. His restaurants still suck — oven is just a polished but chintzy version of Fascati, and BC is just a modern take on Lassen and Hennigs, done worse. I’m hardly a seasoned restaurant entrepreneur, but some of the things this guy misses — including how to treat your employees — seem so basic that I have to wonder where this guy’s head is…uh, never mind. You’re not Rocco DiSpirito, dude: If you’re restaurants suck as bad as these do, you should at least demonstrate some kindness to the poor waiters who depend on your sh*tty fare to pay their rents.

  • vspingola

    We have tried all three restaurants. Oven’s staff was rude and condesending. Our
    Our server scoffed when we dared to ask for goat cheese on only half the pizza.
    We think the pizzas may be preprepared or frozen. Whatever. They stink.
    The Blue Pig is consistantly out of ice cream and I cant tell you how many hairs
    we’ve found in the Busy Chef’s food.
    If this ass is trying to berate bad tippers, perhaps he should take a look at what he had to offer.

  • game over

    perhaps the above comments were too hard for you to understand vspingola- follow along here i will go nice and slow-
    “the ass” that you speak of is not berating the general public. he is only speaking of one of the owners (alan) who goes to his own restaurant and tips his employees badly. that was the point. “the ass” would kindly give his staff money towards what the tip should have been to make up for the horrific one alan would leave. also just so you understand the “ass” had no control over the food that came out of the kitchen that is all dan the chef. which is probally one of the many reasons chris is no longer with them. and in defense to the comment about the staff being rude-
    they were told by the kitchen to say no to serveral things such as half with cheese half without, (untill someone complained about it in a review and then dan said he never told the staff that- which was a total lie one of many) the wait staff felt that things like that were a simple request. so what you were probally perceiving as rudeness was their discomfort and unhappiness with some members of the kitchen!!!!!!!!!

  • Heights97

    Gordon Ramsay, where are you when we need you!

  • nabeguy

    What do expect from a guy who talks to a horse?

  • Tim N.

    Good one, nabeguy… “Wiiiilbuuurrr!”

    I have to admit, I’ve been by these places a number of times and I don’t have even the slightest desire to give any of them a try (except Blue Pig, my daughter likes it, me, not so much). When I wandered into Busy Chef (dumb name) from BP, it just looked like a lot of pre-wrapped stuff and overpriced drinks (I think they charge $2 for a water, can someone confirm?).

    Fascati’s still the best old-school pizza around, and Grimaldi’s is still the legend. I’m not sure why anyone would try Oven unless the other two places were closed.

  • John Hardy

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t Fehlinger going around saying that he was the owner of at least one of these places? I recall that he claimed he was the owner of Uncommon Grounds.

  • simon
  • John Hardy

    Yes. The owner of Oven? Didn’t think so.

    Also, this is the article I was thinking of where he’s referred to as the owner of Uncommon Ground:

    Furthermore, if I recall correctly, one of the rules from the Sh*tty Tipper Database was that transactions being reported must be credit card transactions because they can be traced. Apparently, the transaction being referred to here was in cash – the waitron not bringing smaller bills – so I’m going to go ahead and call B.S.

    There seems to be an aroma of B.S. encompassing this guy, leaving me with a surprising lack of amazement at his allegation.

    I am surprised, however, that he managed to last as long as he did at that group of establishments.

  • cranberry

    if he’s no longer with theses “establishments” why do i still see him hanging around…

  • Andy

    It is true. Alan is an awful tipper even at his own Restaurant. So is the other owner.

  • get the facts

    just to set you idiots straight- there can be more then one owner of a restaurant. and more then one investor.
    so yes chris was one of the owners @ oven and uncommon grounds. and he is NOT still hangin around @ any of the three places you just dont know who u are seeing
    you are probally seeing dan,also an owner and “head chef”
    @oven and at whatever uncommon grounds will be. and yes one of the rules of bitter waitress is it is suppose to be credit card so it can be proved so that chris who runs the site cant be blamed for wrongly tarnishing ones reputation but in this case since chris was there the night this bad tip was givin and saw it with his own 2 eyes he must of felt it was ok to publish the info. and plus it must of felt nice to expose alan for the cheap,rude ass that he is!!!!!!

  • game over

    put it this way my recent comments about alan and dan were so bad that they wouldnt put them up here. trust me people just dont go to any of these three places
    the food is frozen and not even made there
    just go some where else and please dont support these losers!!!