Dining Out 101

So last night I wrote a rather long post.  I went on and on and on.  And about 3/4 of the way through it I realized it was a second post.  So I cut and pasted the end of the post into a new entry and finished up the original post.  So tonight I bring you part 2 of yesterday’s post.

It deals with the bad survey that I got last week, from the little man who was pissed that their wasn’t enough meat on his fajita and that it was over-cooked.  He also commented that I was unable to recommend a drink.  Which is a stupid statement.  I recommend drinks all night.  I might not have suggested something when I greeted the table but if you have questions or want suggestions I’m full of anwers.  Anyway  this is what I have to say about that.

The interesting thing about the survey guy is that I remember him. As a waiter I won’t remember much about you until I know what you had to eat. Then it all comes back to me. I remember the guy. He was at table 66 ordered a Diet Pepsi and steak fajitas. I kept his drink full and checked back on him a number of times after he got his food. When his frequent flyer card didn’t work, I told him how to go on line to get credit for the meal he was eating. And he paid the check and tipped okay.

So here’s the point. If you are unhappy with your food. There’s absolutely nothing that can be done about it two weeks later. I can’t get you a new one. I can’t get you something else. Basically there’s little I can do for you. SO, if you get a fajita that you think is over-cooked. Be nice about it. But send it back. If your steak isn’t cooked the way you requested. Be nice about it. But ask for it to be recooked. If you asked for no mayonaise on your club sandwich, be nice about it, but send it back. Do you see a theme here. BE NICE. The last thing you want to be is a dick. But also remember you are paying. You should get what you want. If you went to the GAP and bought a pair of jeans and they didn’t fit you would return them. Dining out is the same way. You are paying, sometimes a lot to get a good meal. You deserve to get what you are paying for. So politely call the waiter over alert them to the problem. (Don’t always assume it’s the waiter’s fault either. I could do a million posts on how the kitchen fucks up my orders every day.) Then politely ask if you could get something else. A new one. A different one. What every will make you happy. And then realize that if you want something new, it won’t magically materialize. The kitchen will have to make it for you. So it might be 15 minutes or so before you get it. But you will get the new one.

As a waiter I tell every table that it’s my job to fetch them things. It’s not my job to run for them, but it is my job to bring them what they want. And it’s my job to make sure their experience while at my restaurant is the best it can be. So if they are unhappy I will bend over backwards to make that not the case. I’ll do anything within my power to change the circumstances.

A couple of things to remember when something isn’t the way you like it.

1. Don’t eat the entire steak except for two bites and then try to send it back. At that point it’s your’s.

2. Don’t expect it for free just because you sent it back to the kitchen. If your GAP jeans don’t fit, you don’t get the next pair for free, so why would you get your hamburger for free.

3. Never ever yell at the waiter about it. It won’t help and could even make things worse.

4. Don’t decide not to tip the waiter because you coffee was cold, or your burger was rare. Once again it’s probably not their fault.

5. Never, ever, yell at the waiter no matter how annoyed you are. Just ask yourself how you would like it if someone came to your work place and started to scream at you.

6. When the manager stops by to see how the new item is…tell them the truth. But also mention how the server went out of their way to fix the problem.

7. Remember it’s only a meal. You eat three of those a day. Twenty-one a week. Seven thousand, six hundred and sixty-five a year. Is it really worth the stress and aggravation. Really? Is it?

8. And if by chance you get one of those rare servers who gives you attitude after you have been nice and POLITE, did I mention polite. Well then, ask to see the manager and tell them whats going on. Don’t just NOT tip. If you just don’t tip, it won’t fix the problem and if it were me I’d just think you didn’t tip because you were some ass from Ithaca, Ireland, Italy, or Indianapolis. Or what ever foreign country you are from.

Happy Dining everyone.

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2 thoughts on “Dining Out 101

  1. Lemuel March 3, 2008 / 08:34

    One of the major themes in your post as I read it is applicable to many areas of our lives: don’t kill the messenger.

    For the most part many of the people we deal with on a daily basis are the “messengers”. They did not make the rules. They did not cook the food. They did not screw up the order. Etc. Yet frequently they are the ones who feel the wrath and abuse.

    I’ve generally found that I get much, much better results with the politeness and courtesy that you recommend – in whatever sphere I am in.

  2. Urspo March 4, 2008 / 23:05

    those are sensible bits of advice
    I particularly liked the ‘no yelling’ – i have never seen yelling efficacious.

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