To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Small town restaurant’s robot waiter leaves customers furious and drives them away
Featured Image Credit: Fox News

Small town restaurant’s robot waiter leaves customers furious and drives them away

Locals in the small Oregon town claim they'll 'never' go to the restaurant again

“Hello I’m Plato and I'll be your server today.” Words we’re so used to hearing coming out of a human as we feast at our favorite local spots. But they’ve been coming out of more and more robots, too.

Many restaurants have been introducing robot waiters to their customers, with a stack of shelves on wheels and often a cartoon face and bow-tie serving plates of food.

But diners in Estacada, Oregon, aren’t all so excited about the new member of staff working in their small town.

The Cazadero had been struggling to hire enough staff. Owner Sherry Andrus had to request potential employees to check the address in the timber town, approximately 45 minutes outside of Portland, before applying.

And with minimum wage in the state increasing and food prices rising, Andrus decided to head to the Bar & Restaurant Expo in March to see how robots could help her out.

Sherry Andrus has owned the place since 2018.
Fox News

“I love robots and what they can do. I think they’re kind of cute and kind of fun,” she told Fox News.

So she came back with a lease for her new pal Plato, United Robotics Group’s hospitality-focused ‘cobiot’.

Andrus introduced Plato to The Cazadero and local Facebook pages but faced a backlash of angry responses.

Customers claimed they’d ‘never go there again’ and will 'definitely stay away', while another said their dining choice 'will change'.

The onslaught of nastiness even led to the comments being closed off on one local page.

However, some did defend Andrus’ decision, writing: “Y’all are insane. They’ve been hiring for months and everyone’s been complaining about the wait time here… Stop your commenting and go apply for the job if you’re so upset about it.”

The Cazadero owner explained there was also misunderstandings of AI replacing jobs.

She said: “The server positions, the bartender positions are still there. This is just a tool to help them do their job better and be more efficient for the guests.”

Plato takes food to tables, it doesn't take orders.
Fox News

Like on one hot afternoon when a single employee worked the bar and rushed around serving plates - they needed Plato.

And plenty of diners do love the robot.

One guy explained when he left his job ‘they were replacing people with robots’ but added: “That’s just modern times. The little kids love him.”

And Vietnam-era veteran Roy even says hi to Plato ‘every time he comes by’.

He said: “I know he can’t answer, but mama told me to be polite.”

However, one young diner did tell the sever that he absolutely didn’t want his family to be served by a robot.

Andrus says customers can simply request a ‘100 percent human experience’ if that’s the case when they arrive at the small town restaurant.

Topics: Food and Drink, Technology, US News, Artificial Intelligence