Why do restaurants serve bread..?

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by Bouji, Feb 25, 2009.

  1. Bouji

    Bouji Senior member

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    It seems like this is expected and never questioned.

    In certain cases I can see the reason,

    Central/South Asian cuisine- Unless you're eating rice, that is what the food is eaten with; unlike western cuisine, in these cuisines its used 'to scoop it up', not accompany.
    Italian cuisine - If you don't have a 'primi' then the meal can lack carbs and not be filling.

    As far as French/British/American/Spanish/German/Fusion/Haute/whatever cuisine goes, I really cannot understand the concept of bread...
     
  2. auto90403

    auto90403 Senior member

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    I don't follow.

    Are you suggesting that bread is somehow not central to European cuisines?

    "Give us this day our daily bread" -- that ring a bell?
     
  3. Bhowie

    Bhowie Senior member

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    I don't follow.

    Are you suggesting that bread is somehow not central to European cuisines?

    "Give us this day our daily bread" -- that ring a bell?


    No, is that from an Anne Rice novel?
     
  4. Bouji

    Bouji Senior member

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    I don't follow. Are you suggesting that bread is somehow not central to European cuisines?
    No, I am asking why restaurants serve it. Re-read question...
    So what? 1. You use a Christian-centric quote, when in fact most of modern western Europe is atheist with the exception of Italy, which I'm ignoring for this question anyway. 2. When you cook at home, do you serve bread 15 minutes before the first course is ready?
     
  5. DNW

    DNW Senior member

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    It's to give those people who do not order appetizers something to do while they wait for food. Otherwise, they might be up in arms when the food doesn't arrive quickly.
     
  6. gdl203

    gdl203 Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    I enjoy eating bread with my meal, unless it's pasta, risotto or some starch-based meal. What I dislike a little is when people throw themselves on the bread basket and eat two rolls covered with butter before the appetizers come out. Not sure why it bugs me but I find that both distasteful and opposite to the objective of going to a restaurant to enjoy a good meal (I can get bread and cheap butter anywhere - why fill myself up with that stuff?)
     
  7. itsstillmatt

    itsstillmatt The Liberator Dubiously Honored

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    I enjoy eating bread with my meal, unless it's pasta, risotto or some starch-based meal. What I dislike a little is when people throw themselves on the bread basket and eat two rolls covered with butter before the appetizers come out. Not sure why it bugs me but I find that both distasteful and opposite to the objective of going to a restaurant to enjoy a good meal (I can get bread and cheap butter anywhere - why fill myself up with that stuff?)
    Fuck. I agree. Though I like eating bread with seafood pastas, for some reason.
     
  8. cchen

    cchen Senior member

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    I enjoy eating bread with my meal, unless it's pasta, risotto or some starch-based meal. What I dislike a little is when people throw themselves on the bread basket and eat two rolls covered with butter before the appetizers come out. Not sure why it bugs me but I find that both distasteful and opposite to the objective of going to a restaurant to enjoy a good meal (I can get bread and cheap butter anywhere - why fill myself up with that stuff?)

    What if the restaurant has amazing bread service and great butter? I sometimes eat too much bread cuz it's too damn good...
     
  9. gdl203

    gdl203 Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    What if the restaurant has amazing bread service and great butter? I sometimes eat too much bread cuz it's too damn good...
    Good point. E.g. the rolls at Blue Hill @ SB are so delicious that I could eat those in lieu of an appetizer [​IMG]

    However, I very rarely encounter bread that's so good that it would make sense to fill up on it. Nothing I hate more than being too full for dessert - that's a real crime.
     
  10. DNW

    DNW Senior member

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    I enjoy eating bread with my meal, unless it's pasta, risotto or some starch-based meal. What I dislike a little is when people throw themselves on the bread basket and eat two rolls covered with butter before the appetizers come out. Not sure why it bugs me but I find that both distasteful and opposite to the objective of going to a restaurant to enjoy a good meal (I can get bread and cheap butter anywhere - why fill myself up with that stuff?)

    Fuck. I agree. Though I like eating bread with seafood pastas, for some reason.

    I agree for the most part. But I do remember eating at particularly good Italian restaurants where they served fresh baked bread and a nice dipping sauce or olive oil--sometimes you just can't help yourself. Good food is good food, regardless whether it's bread, app, main, or dessert.
     
  11. lbcgav

    lbcgav Senior member

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    Fuck. I agree. Though I like eating bread with seafood pastas, for some reason.

    Barbarian!
     
  12. milosz

    milosz Senior member

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    More perceived value for your money, Americans (and maybe Europeans) expect to have some kind of bread with any meal (toast with breakfast, a sandwich for lunch, etc..), fills you up so you're guaranteed not to leave hungry.
     
  13. lee_44106

    lee_44106 Senior member

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    Interesting observation. It's something that's just done and not questioned, I guess.

    If they stop serving bread would people order more food?

    How about stop serving water and make you buy drinks?
     
  14. DNW

    DNW Senior member

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    Interesting observation. It's something that's just done and not questioned, I guess. If they stop serving bread would people order more food? How about stop serving water and make you buy drinks?
    Here's my rule: if the bread is bad, don't serve it unless asked. I don't want to eat crappy bread at a restaurant. Speaking of which, this chinese/cuban place that I frequent always gives me supermarket french bread, even for takeouts. Now, I understand that bread goes with some of the cuban dishes. But, bread and stir fry gai lan in oyster sauce? Bizzare.
     
  15. ReJoyce

    ReJoyce Active Member

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    It is ludicrous to extend this observation to the French. Bread, cheese, and wine are the culinary trinity.
     

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