US waiters' worst conduct

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by kennethpollock, Apr 24, 2006.

  1. whoopee

    whoopee Senior member

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    ...you learn so much more about America that way.
    Agreed. Not always what you want to do, though.
     
  2. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    for every story that you can come up with about poor US service, or let us say over familiar US service, I can come up with 2 about strange non-US service. as a good example, off the top of my head, a lot of places in germany have very bizzaire systems for ordering beer, that are specific to that city, and a foreigner, even one who speaks german, can find himself uncomfortable with trying to get served. such is life, and it is part of seeing new things.
     
  3. Nantucket Red

    Nantucket Red "Mr. Fashionista"

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    for every story that you can come up with about poor US service, or let us say over familiar US service, I can come up with 2 about strange non-US service. as a good example, off the top of my head, a lot of places in germany have very bizzaire systems for ordering beer, that are specific to that city, and a foreigner, even one who speaks german, can find himself uncomfortable with trying to get served. such is life, and it is part of seeing new things.
    Likewise in Japan, a sushi bar can be a real nightmare for a foreigner and can be difficult to navigate for Japanese, who frequently find that they don't know the character for an obscure kind of fish. Of course, that's why the sushi chefs are available for consultation right behind the bar.
     
  4. globetrotter

    globetrotter Senior member

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    Likewise in Japan, a sushi bar can be a real nightmare for a foreigner and can be difficult to navigate for Japanese, who frequently find that they don't know the character for an obscure kind of fish.

    Of course, that's why the sushi chefs are available for consultation right behind the bar.



    well, I suggest that we join the cult of Mr. P, and we can spend the rest of our lives trying to convince staff in food establishments around the world that there is only one way of serving food. we cold be part of the origional disciples of Mr. P.
     
  5. Tokyo Slim

    Tokyo Slim In Time Out

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    well, I suggest that we join the cult of Mr. P, and we can spend the rest of our lives trying to convince staff in food establishments around the world that there is only one way of serving food. we cold be part of the origional disciples of Mr. P.

    I bet that over the course of your agonizingly frustrating life you would only unknowingly eat a gallon of lower-class spit hidden in your food.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Huntsman

    Huntsman Senior member

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    You expect bad service from some places, then?


    Yes.

    Would you expect good service from a McDonald's? Sure, you may get a person who really is happy to take your order, but rarely. Nature has no instantaneous changes, and in between McDonald's and the French Laundry is quite a spectrum of service. What should one think?

    I consider most of these regional or national places as slow fast food. They aren't in it for aristology.

    Regards,
    Huntsman
     
  7. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Senior member

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    I've never been, but I bet that even at the French Laundry the waiters and waitresses introduce themselves by name.
     
  8. Mr. Checks

    Mr. Checks Senior member

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    Man, this thread sure makes me miss the days when I waited on people for a living!
     
  9. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt The Liberator Dubiously Honored

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    I've never been, but I bet that even at the French Laundry the waiters and waitresses introduce themselves by name.

    They don't. I can't think of a good restaurant that I have bben to recently where they do. I don't tell them my name either[​IMG] .
     
  10. aybojs

    aybojs Senior member

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    They don't. I can't think of a good restaurant that I have bben to recently where they do. I don't tell them my name either[​IMG] .

    Well, don't worry, I find French food bland and disgusting (way too much oil and butter). But I'll play the role of Mr. Pollock and say, "HOW DARE YOU CHALLENGE MY TASTES, I AM RIGHT AND YOU ARE BOTTOM FEEDING SCUM"
     
  11. Nantucket Red

    Nantucket Red "Mr. Fashionista"

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    My sentiments are divided in this argument.

    I agree with many of Mr. P's gripes, and expect outstanding, courteous and professional service if I am paying for such. I will also tip such service well.

    I also agree with those who approach the question from the service side. I realize that while I'm relaxing and enjoying a meal, the members waitstaff are at work and on their feet. To me, this means that I am indeed involved in a brief relationship with the waiter or waitress serving me and feel that treating them with courtesy and respect will pretty much guarantee me the same. If both the food and the service are impeccable, this could become a long-term relationship with both the restaurant and the waiter.

    Let me illustrate:
    My grandparents loved a certain restaurant and dined there often. They had a favorite waiter, a career waiter who was probably in his 60s. He had worked in many finer restaurants and on cruise ships, and was very professional in a way Mr. Pollock would truly have appreciated. After asking to be seated at his tables repeatedly, it was understood that he was their waiter. While this means that they knew his name, they had also asked it because he was exceptional. He never acted in an overly familiar manner with them -- kept a professional distance -- and yet his manner could never have been termed "aloof." He was attentive but unobtrusive and never would have dreamed of addressing us as "guys" or "folks."

    My grandparents once stayed at a hotel with a reputation as a fine establishment. My grandfather showed up at the restaurant in a dress shirt and blazer. The maitre d' refused to let him in without a tie, so back to his room he went and returned wearing a tie. At the end of the meal, the waiter told him to keep his fork for dessert. My grandfather read him the riot act, explaining that any restaurant that required him to wear a tie should damn-well take away the fork he ate his meal with and bring him a proper dessert fork. By god, they brought him one. His complaint was not with the waiter, but with restaurant policy. The waiter was just the one in the position to take the brunt of the complaint.

    The moral is that, while one should expect excellent service when paying for the best, it should be understood that the relationship between the customer and both the establishment and the waitstaff is reciprocal.
     
  12. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    TWTH [​IMG]

    Translation?
     
  13. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    for every story that you can come up with about poor US service, or let us say over familiar US service, I can come up with 2 about strange non-US service. as a good example, off the top of my head, a lot of places in germany have very bizzaire systems for ordering beer, that are specific to that city, and a foreigner, even one who speaks german, can find himself uncomfortable with trying to get served. such is life, and it is part of seeing new things.

    I don't know if this was partially directed at me, GB, but I guess I was too subtle: I meant that I passed behavior that I think is unacceptable as "Cultural" so as not to put oil on the fire. If people like to have their plate taken as soon as they are done even while others are still eating, I suppose this is now becoming the American way. However, if someone pulls a plate as the last bite is about to be absorbed, I find it rude, but maybe I'm wrong and it is acceptable in America, what do I know, it seems anything goes.

    I am one who appreciates cultural differences. And maybe here my own difference is that I like to take my meals slowly and enjoy conversations at the table without being rushed and without being continually interrupted. That's all I ask for. And for the different parts of the meal to arrive in such a way that I don't have to rearrange things on the table, and for my water to be refilled. I'm really easily satisfied, and lately, I suppose I've had nothing but bad luck? How did the restaurant industry change in the past 20 years, if someone can answer?

    Also, for those who talk about standards and types of restaurants: as of what amount is one entitled not to see the wine arrive at the table 10 minutes after the steak was served?
     
  14. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    when I lived in the US and took out visiting foriegners, I always too them to Roscoes for chicken and waffles and loud waiters. Id take that over snooty any day, plus, you learn so much more about America that way.
    I do that too, but mostly with friends visiting from abroad, not so much with professional contact, and I agree with you. I find they like steak houses, places where you can eat ribs with your fingers, bar food with screaming big screen TV, Mongolian barbecue (when it was still a novelty). Then they can go home and actually tell stories.
     
  15. tiger02

    tiger02 Militarist

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    F--I think your examples really are bad service, by anyone's standards. The few times I've had waitstaff try to clear my place before I was ready, a pointed stare was enough to get across the message. That's on a different level than a waiter introducing himself by name, which I think really is a cultural difference.

    Tom

    edit--wine after the food? Wow, never had that experience, anywhere. My problem is always the opposite--it come so early that I have no choice but to order a second bottle!
     

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