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Dress for a 'fine" dining experience in America - Page 6

post #76 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bouji
You handle yourself with grace; and for this I must respect you.

With regard to the no tie, with a suit look; in London this is usually worn by younger people. It is actually regarded as quite stylish, and a much more appropriate look to wear to a restaurant in these archaic parts of London.

You see the thing is in these archaic parts of London (such as Mayfair, Belgravia, and St. James's etc.) The standard tie is really regarded as something you wear to an office, and there's a huge stigma attached to it by locals. The real anal types around hear kick up a fuss when one does not wear a high-wing collar shirt to an office, as this is regarded as the only correct shirt for the office. I mentioned in my last post, it is perfectly acceptable around here to be wearing a cravat, Ascot, or bow-tie to a restaurant. A key thing you also have to remember is that very few people around here are locals, unlike America - the UK does not have a very large urban population; I'd venture to say millions of people venture into these parts of London each day. On average, if you go to somewhere like Petrus or Drones, the likelihood that anyone in the restaurant is local is second to none.

The archaic types around here would much preffer that us 'younger' locals wore no tie to a restaurant: rather than a standard tie.
I've read what you're saying before. Aparently ties have grown a connection to jackass City boys who come in and order Clicquot magnums and anything with caviar or truffles involved simply because they're the most expensive things on the menu.

Am I correct in assuming that this stigma has yet to be perceived in places like Rules?
post #77 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Violinist
You know, if the tie looks good, then there's no problem. The dress shirt with the jacket can look great too, but I think a tie can show a lot of taste. In my opinion, if the person is clean and maybe put some thought into how he's dressed and looks good, I don't really care. I think there should probably be a jacket though.

Again I'm with you, a nice, more dressy tie than one would wear to the office is fine with me, as for the afformentioned anal types - I'd not know: I shall ask them at my next opportunity.
I am also with you that their ought to be a jacket, but if it is to hot - I would go for a long sleeve shirt with no tie, and the top button un-done.
I'll say it again, what someone else wears; within reason (i.e. not sportswear or short sleeves) is not going to offend me.
post #78 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward Appleby
I've read what you're saying before. Aparently ties have grown a connection to jackass City boys who come in and order Clicquot magnums and anything with caviar or truffles involved simply because they're the most expensive things on the menu.

Am I correct in assuming that this stigma has yet to be perceived in places like Rules?

You've hit the nail on the head with the Cliquot magnums...

Yes, you are correct, places like Rules and even so far as nicer places out in the country (such as; Fat Duck - Bray, Maison aux Quatre Saisons - Oxford, Hibiscus - Ludlow, and Rick Stein - Padstowe). Yet, and I'm sure the country bumpkins will attest to this; we're more civilised in the Royal Borough.
post #79 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward Appleby
Unless you're drinking a 95 Petrus or something, I find it hard to believe that the motivation comes from any noticeable difference as much as the pretentions to snobbery to which LK alluded.

I think there's an anaolg in the home audio community: blind tests and science both support the fact that the only differentiator between speaker wires is resistance- so, wires of a given gauge provide the exact same performance regardless of whether or not they're oxygen-free or what have you. Despite this, audio magazines are full of glowing reviews of multi-thousand dollar speaker "cables." Why? If you're looking for an improvement, you'll hear it (or taste it.)

Yes and no. Resistance isn't the only factor. Fancy cable geometries and materials can alter the sound by altering capacitance and inductance. This is measurable both subjectively and with instruments. For most people with average systems, fancy cables will not amount to any improvement.

The audiophile cable industry is largely driven by flashy marketing schemes and biased reviews paid for by advertising dollars in those same magazines, but there is validity behind some of the claims. Sometimes an appropriately chosen cable can complement a speaker that is particularly hard to drive. Inductance isn't usually a concern, but sometimes you come across a piece of gear that benefits from a cable designed to minimize it. Again, it's not something you'll have to worry about with mainstream gear.

Anyway, I get what your saying about the placebo effect and how it relates to effect of the glass on the taste of your wine ;p
post #80 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQgeek
Yes and no. Resistance isn't the only factor. Fancy cable geometries and materials can alter the sound by altering capacitance and inductance. This is measurable both subjectively and with instruments. For most people with average systems, fancy cables will not amount to any improvement.

The audiophile cable industry is largely driven by flashy marketing schemes and biased reviews paid for by advertising dollars in those same magazines, but there is validity behind some of the claims. Sometimes an appropriately chosen cable can complement a speaker that is particularly hard to drive. Inductance isn't usually a concern, but sometimes you come across a piece of gear that benefits from a cable designed to minimize it. Again, it's not something you'll have to worry about with mainstream gear.
I found this an interesting read:
http://www.roger-russell.com/wire/wire.htm
From the former research director at McIntosh.
post #81 of 139
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by matadorpoeta
i'm with you on this. however, didn't you say you had been there before? you knew what to expect there, no?

i wouldn't expect a restaurant with a warehouse ambience to require a jacket and tie.

btw,
a friend of mine moved to seattle a few years ago and was fired from his job within a few weeks. the boss said he had a "california attitude." what does this mean?


Baccanalia and the California attitude has always been a bit of a puzzle to me. Maybe it is due to my advanced age. When it first opened, it was in an old house; rather cramped and uncomfortable. Then, it moved to the warehouse, where there it also opened a large place called "Star Provisions" located just before you walk into the restaurant. Star Provisions is a series of little shops, a bakery, butcher, fish market, wine shop, cheese shop and 4-5 others. The cheese shop supplies its products to both the retail trade and a number of other restaurants.
The hosts at Baccanalia have always dressed rather badly, and now that the California attitude has expanded nationwide, many of the customers at Baccanalia are dressing more like the hosts. I suspect that Baccanalia wanted that. The warehouse location must encourage it.
Prior to recently, many of the customers there seemed to follow the rule that if it is expensive, it must be elegant and dressed accordingly. We now seem to have gotten away from that at Baccanalia, however. "Redneck chic" is big in Georgia now; pickup trucks and the like. I think it resembles California chic in some respects.
I think my manner of dress may have always been a bit of a thorn in its side. The prior assistant manageress, who was rather young and hip (with a huge tatoo just below the nape of her neck), seemed to have a good eye for clothes and often vocally admired mine. I think the head manageress did not like that. I once laid it on a bit thick for her, after the assistant manageress said that I was then wearing the best looking suit she had ever seen. I [falsely] said: "It should be. It takes me two hours to get dressed every morning." Thinking back, I doubt that remark went over well with the manageress. A man taking two hours trying to dress well certainly is not doing the California "thing."
post #82 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by kennethpollock
Baccanalia and the California attitude has always been a bit of a puzzle to me. Maybe it is due to my advanced age. When it first opened, it was in an old house; rather cramped and uncomfortable. Then, it moved to the warehouse, where there it also opened a large place called "Star Provisions" located just before you walk into the restaurant. Star Provisions is a series of little shops, a bakery, butcher, fish market, wine shop, cheese shop and 4-5 others. The cheese shop supplies its products to both the retail trade and a number of other restaurants.
The hosts at Baccanalia have always dressed rather badly, and now that the California attitude has expanded nationwide, many of the customers at Baccanalia are dressing more like the hosts. I suspect that Baccanalia wanted that. The warehouse location must encourage it.
Prior to recently, many of the customers there seemed to follow the rule that if it is expensive, it must be elegant and dressed accordingly. We now seem to have gotten away from that at Baccanalia, however. "Redneck chic" is big in Georgia now; pickup trucks and the like. I think it resembles California chic in some respects.
I think my manner of dress may have always been a bit of a thorn in its side. The prior assistant manageress, who was rather young and hip (with a huge tatoo just below the nape of her neck), seemed to have a good eye for clothes and often vocally admired mine. I think the head manageress did not like that. I once laid it on a bit thick for her, after the assistant manageress said that I was then wearing the best looking suit she had ever seen. I [falsely] said: "It should be. It takes me two hours to get dressed every morning." Thinking back, I doubt that remark went over well with the manageress. A man taking two hours trying to dress well certainly is not doing the California "thing."
Yes, but a man taking two hours to trying to look like he just rolled out of bed is very California.
post #83 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward Appleby
I found this an interesting read:
http://www.roger-russell.com/wire/wire.htm
From the former research director at McIntosh.

Like I said, in general terms I agree with you (OFC and silver cables for example have absolutely no effect on sound quality), but there are specific cases where choosing the right wire can help improve sound.

For example, a loudspeaker that dips below 2ohms at the treble frequencies can be made to sound "better" (it's actually the level which is affected, not the quality of the sound) with a cable designed for lower inductance than with regular twisted-pair which has relatively (key word) high inductance.

Having said that, you still don't need to spend hundreds of dollars per foot (or anything close to that) to get a lower inductance cable should you need one. For interconnects, it's even more absurd to spend that kind of money.

Again, most mass-market stuff doesn't dip anywhere near 4ohms let alone below 2 ohms. Inductance is usually irrelevant but in specific cases it can make a significant (and measurable) difference.

EDIT: Let's not throw this thread way off-topic :P
post #84 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by kennethpollock
Baccanalia and the California attitude has always been a bit of a puzzle to me. Maybe it is due to my advanced age. When it first opened, it was in an old house; rather cramped and uncomfortable. Then, it moved to the warehouse, where there it also opened a large place called "Star Provisions" located just before you walk into the restaurant. Star Provisions is a series of little shops, a bakery, butcher, fish market, wine shop, cheese shop and 4-5 others. The cheese shop supplies its products to both the retail trade and a number of other restaurants. The hosts at Baccanalia have always dressed rather badly, and now that the California attitude has expanded nationwide, many of the customers at Baccanalia are dressing more like the hosts. I suspect that Baccanalia wanted that. The warehouse location must encourage it. Prior to recently, many of the customers there seemed to follow the rule that if it is expensive, it must be elegant and dressed accordingly. We now seem to have gotten away from that at Baccanalia, however. "Redneck chic" is big in Georgia now; pickup trucks and the like. I think it resembles California chic in some respects. I think my manner of dress may have always been a bit of a thorn in its side. The prior assistant manageress, who was rather young and hip (with a huge tatoo just below the nape of her neck), seemed to have a good eye for clothes and often vocally admired mine. I think the head manageress did not like that. I once laid it on a bit thick for her, after the assistant manageress said that I was then wearing the best looking suit she had ever seen. I [falsely] said: "It should be. It takes me two hours to get dressed every morning." Thinking back, I doubt that remark went over well with the manageress. A man taking two hours trying to dress well certainly is not doing the California "thing."
Certainly, subversive elegance is the best elegance.
post #85 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by GQgeek
EDIT: Let's not throw this thread way off-topic :P

Yes - you need to be careful. Ken may start taking his own sound system to restaurants so that he can better appreciate the background Muzak.
post #86 of 139
Thread Starter 
For those of you interested in the Baccanalia/Star Provisions/Floataway/Quinones food empire:
http://www.starprovisions.com/
post #87 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward Appleby
Unless you're drinking a 95 Petrus or something, I find it hard to believe that the motivation comes from any noticeable difference as much as the pretentions to snobbery to which LK alluded.

I think there's an anaolg in the home audio community: blind tests and science both support the fact that the only differentiator between speaker wires is resistance- so, wires of a given gauge provide the exact same performance regardless of whether or not they're oxygen-free or what have you. Despite this, audio magazines are full of glowing reviews of multi-thousand dollar speaker "cables." Why? If you're looking for an improvement, you'll hear it (or taste it.)

Moreover, it's hard to see how the practice of bringing one's own wine accoutrements could be polite, unless you're going to a restaurant which has nothing more than a house bottle. If the establishment has any sort of wine stock, much less a sommelier, it seems to me that bringing your own glasses et al is stating rather clearly (and crassly) that your restaurant's not good enough for my refined ass.

Most people don't do this when they are drinking one bottle of wine, but sometimes they'll bring stemware to wine dinners where each person attending will bring 1-2 bottles of wine and some stemware. Most restaurants appreciate this because they would have to go through a large amount of expensive stemware and breakage is rather high on those particular items.

As far as the taste of wine, the situation is somewhat different because some people clean glasses with water only and polishing which leaves no potential for detergent residue. Is it anal? Sure, but people still do it.
post #88 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by Edward Appleby
Unless you're drinking a 95 Petrus or something, I find it hard to believe that the motivation comes from any noticeable difference as much as the pretentions to snobbery to which LK alluded.

I think there's an anaolg in the home audio community: blind tests and science both support the fact that the only differentiator between speaker wires is resistance- so, wires of a given gauge provide the exact same performance regardless of whether or not they're oxygen-free or what have you. Despite this, audio magazines are full of glowing reviews of multi-thousand dollar speaker "cables." Why? If you're looking for an improvement, you'll hear it (or taste it.)

Moreover, it's hard to see how the practice of bringing one's own wine accoutrements could be polite, unless you're going to a restaurant which has nothing more than a house bottle. If the establishment has any sort of wine stock, much less a sommelier, it seems to me that bringing your own glasses et al is stating rather clearly (and crassly) that your restaurant's not good enough for my refined ass.

Before I had a budget for such luxuries as crystal (or even half-decent wines, for that matter), I drank from cheap wine glasses that merely fit my minimum standard; I could not feel any seam in the stem. Being able to feel a seam in the stem can ruin the whole wine-drinking experience for me -- perhaps KP feels the same way.

Whether it was Christmas or my birthday I don't recall, but on one of those occasions my girlfriend (Pussycat, of course) gave me two Orrefors Intermezzo wine glasses with very large bowls. The first time I drank one of the cheap reds I could afford at the time out of one of these glasses, it was suddenly transformed from a "drinkable" wine to something more complex and delicate. The glass transformed it from a wine I tolerated to one I started to consider a reasonably good value.

There are several points I'd like to make here:
1) Petty personal annoynances like being able to feel a seam in the stem of the glass can detract from your enjoyment of the wine.
2) Conversely, the weight and balance of a fine crystal glass, not to mention its tone and the way it reflects and refracts light can add to the aesthetic delight of one's drinking (and dining) experience.
3) The quality of the glass absolutely does either add or detract from the bouquet and flavor of the wine, therefore . . .
4) If "Life is too short to drink bad wine," then why take chances that you'll be drinking good wine out of a crappy glass when you're paying good money to dine out?

I personally have never brought my own wine glasses to a restaurant, but I see nothing wrong with it. Why take chances? If you are very particular about your dining preferences -- and there's nothing inherently wrong with this -- why not do what you can to ensure that every element is just so?

I think bringing your own glasses or wine basket to a restaurant can be done with style so long as it's done with a pleasantly diplomatic attitude rather than an "assholier-than-thou" one. Giving KP the benefit of the doubt, my guess is that he is a congenial dining companion and pleasant customer from the point of view of waitstaff. He probably holds his tongue during the meal unless something is terribly wrong and vents his petty annoyances on Style Forum. While I see nothing inherently wrong with this, I would like it if he occasionally posted about a meal or a restaurant where he was pleased with everything. Since he dines out so often, he must have more of these pleasant experiences than not.

Last of all, I agree with Jill that an awful lot of posters are being pretty harsh to KP.
post #89 of 139
As an addendum, never hold the wine glass by the bowl-it is gauche.
post #90 of 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by LabelKing
As an addendum, never hold the wine glass by the bowl-it is gauche.

And how! I used to dine with a lady friend who had considerable experience as a waitress. If any waitron brought a glass of wine to the table holding it by the bowl, she would reprimand them on the spot and request that they bring her wine in a clean glass without fingerprints on the bowl.

As an aside, this is something I've never been able to square with Sex and the City; the characters all invariably hold their wine glasses by the bowl. New Yorkers of the stratum they are supposed to represent know better.
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