Ahhh… Integrity

I know, its a weird post title… but follow me for a sec here….

In a world over-saturated with so many brand promises, big talking heads on tv, and attempts to be “authentic” (scary that’s even a thing!), its easy to become jaded.

Take brand promises, for example. We hear them all the time:

  • Walmart: save money, live better…
  • Coca-Cola: open happiness….
  • McDonalds: I’m lovin it ….
  • Apple: think different.

But let’s be honest: when was the last time you walked out of Walmart thinking, “now I can live better!” or bit into a Big Mac and thought “I’m LOVING this!” or used your iPhone and realized “wow, now I can finally differently! … Thanks, <insert brand>, for doing what you said you would” ? Yeah… me too.

If I stop to think about it, I realize how I have a knee-jerk reaction to undermine every one of their promises with a “yeah, right.” Almost subconsciously, I  write them off as not having anything to do with real life, not applicable with my actual experience with their product, quotidian overreaching. It’s just talk. (Don’t even get me started on how this applies to the bloviating by most of our dear presidential candidates.)

I just wish more of the 700 messages we’re bombarded with each day could be more truthful. Ha, even authentic. Wouldn’t it be nice if a yes meant yes, and a no meant no? 

Which is why it was so incredibly refreshing to experience such a straightforward demonstration of integrity.

Last night the hubby and I decided to go out for dinner. This was no casual Saturday night decision, people. We’ve been trying to save money (thank you Winter Warmer passport!) & eating pretty much paleo; going out felt very special. It actually started with John (the hubby) asking me “if you could eat anything in the world right now, what would it be”… and the first thing that came to mind was Mountain Sun’s Date Night burger. If you haven’t had one yet, go try one. You can thank me later.

So we decided to go to Mountain Sun’s Denver location – Vine Street Pub. If you haven’t heard about the Mountain Suns, you should know a few things first: they only accept cash, all their staff work together & split tips, and the whole vibe is lots of hippie love. Its cool though. We went totally expecting this.

What we didn’t expect was just how true all their staff are to their brand promise. From the horse’s mouth:

“The pub’s mission was to create an environment that was as comfortable as your living room… with a commitment to high-quality ingredients, community engagement, environmental stewardship, and employee equity…”


Boy did last night put that brand promise to the test! It was crazy busy. A 90-minute wait for a table for two. No surprise — its Stout Month! — but miraculously I found 2 seats at the bar.

We decided to eat at the bar instead of wait for a table, so we quickly put some orders into the kitchen and started on our stout sampling odyssey.

The team of beer and people serving us on Feb 20th. You all were awesome!!

…45 minutes later, as kindly as I could, I asked the server delivering a steaming golden plate of fries to our new bar neighbors whether our meals would be coming out soon, too. Long story short, the answer was no. Turns out, they’d lost our ticket. Ugh.

Not 2 minutes later, another server came over — they were so sorry about losing our order that the entire meal (beer and all!) would be 100% complimentary. And our food came out just a few minutes after that. Wow, now that’s service!

This isn’t the first time my order has been screwed up somewhere. But the other places often just replied with a “sorry” and made excuses (“its crazy busy tonight…”). We’d be lucky to get comp’ed a drink or an app.

Not so at Vine Street Pub. The whole team was so on top of it that as soon as they discovered the mistake, everyone came through to ensure we still felt as “comfortable as (being in our own) living room.” We walked out of there truly feeling like we’d been part of a community. I’m so impressed with the Mountain Sun group’s ability to train & support their people’s ability to live out their brand promise — to walk the walk, not just talk the talk — last night. We’ll definitely be bringing our business back to Vine Street Pub.

In a world of over-promising (and under-delivering), experiencing integrity feels like a fresh, cool breeze. 

Makes me wonder… how I can I tweak my mindset, my words, my actions to live with a little more integrity … to bring a little more refreshment to our world. What about you?

Dining review
Vine Street Pub wall art – Photo credit: Denver Post 



2 thoughts on “Ahhh… Integrity

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