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Be Careful About Being Nice to Your Waiter

 
 
the prince
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 02:31 am
See, one of the biggest nightmares of a resteraunt is bad publicity. And a threat to create a scene due to bad service always makes the manager break out into cold sweat. They come arnd pretty quick after that.....
0 Replies
 
Eva
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 08:42 am
You're absolutely right, Gautam.

However, I am one of those working to create good publicity/p.r. for the restaurants I frequent, so I can't do that. What I CAN do is tell any of the employees that I want to see the manager or owner (I refer to them by their first name) immediately. I say it in a quiet voice but with a look that could kill, so none of the other patrons will notice. And the manager/owner comes right out, apologizes, and usually comps my meal. They know I'm on their side, but that I also know a LOT of people.

When I'm traveling, however, anything goes!
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 01:19 pm
Eva, I've often wondered how one is able to use "a look that could kill?" Can you please teach me? I'll be indebted to you for the rest of my life. c.i.
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Eva
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 01:38 pm
Sorry, c.i., but you gotta be a woman. Preferably Irish, according to me Dad.
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cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 01:47 pm
I was out the other night with my wife and her father, who was in town from Vancouver. We went to a restaurant we have patronized before, and we like it. The service was slow....but our server was very astute. I am a pain to go to a restaurant with, because I am always trying to analyze what the problems are. The place was not full, but it was quite obviously understaffed. I couldn't decide if it was on the floor or in the kitchen, but I suspect both. Our duck, that we ordered rare, had obviously been sitting under a heat lamp too long (service error), and a bread pudding that was supposed to be served warm was literally stone cold (big kitchen error). I took a taste of the pudding and made a comment to the table about it, and the waitress overheard, and was at least nice enough to come over to our table and say "I couldn't help but overhear that the bread pudding isn't warm." I said "It's not just not warm, it is stone cold." She politely said she would replace it right away, and I heard her in the kitchen saying, "This pudding is stone cold." Now that is a nice waitperson. The next one I got was lukewarm, but given that it was a long night, and my wife's dad was getting on a "just nuke the ******" trip....I had a few bites and we left. The waitress also made a point of asking if we were headed to the 'Taste of Italy' fest that was going on along College St. that night....a nice touch. She recognized a sloppy evening overall, and still was able to let us leave feeling welcome. We will go back. There is a saying in the industry: "Good service can save bad food, but great food cannot save bad service."
0 Replies
 
Montana
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 09:12 pm
Ditto Cav ;-)
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Montana
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 09:14 pm
cicerone imposter wrote:
Eva, I've often wondered how one is able to use "a look that could kill?" Can you please teach me? I'll be indebted to you for the rest of my life. c.i.



Cicerone
I've seen men who had the look down pat, so there is hope for you. I am a pro at the "looks can kill", so I'd be more than happy to teach you ;-)
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 09:58 pm
Montana, I'm looking forward to that!
cav, I'm in total agreement about 'bad service.' BTW, my wife and I had the bread pudding at Commander's Palace in New Orleans, and it was this side of 'heaven.' Here's the recipe; http://www.commanderspalace.com/new_orleans/recipes_1.php
c.i.
0 Replies
 
Eva
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 10:22 pm
c.i., here's how it's done....

Grit your teeth but keep your lips closed. (It sets your jaw.) Then give 'em the old x-ray vision...stare straight in their eyes as if you know every bad thing they've ever done. Squint ever so slightly. Look over the top of your glasses, if you wear them, while doing this. Then, as if in slow motion, remove your glasses but don't break eye contact. Continue to stare at them while blinking as little as possible. This will raise the hair on the back of their necks.

Practice this in the mirror, if necessary, until you can scare yourself. Then try it out on a friend for feedback (but warn them what you're doing beforehand!)

Report back and let me know how you're doing...
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Tue 17 Jun, 2003 10:34 pm
Ditto cav, savvy waitress, a mess re present organizing, not a fatal thing with good will going...
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cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2003 09:47 am
Eva, Very good instructive talent. I don't need to squint, because my eyes are already squinty. The only problem is, I already scare myself when I look in the mirror. LOL c.i.
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Eva
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2003 09:56 am
See? You're already halfway there! Smile
0 Replies
 
cavfancier
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2003 10:06 am
c.i., as is typical of New Orleans cooking, the recipe is over the top! I do like the addition of meringue...a very nice touch. One of my over the top faves is this one from Joachim Splichal from Patina:

Chocolate Croissant Pudding With Wild Turkey Sauce
Recipe by Joachim Splichal of Patina

Yield: Serves 6

Wild Turkey Sauce

1 cup milk
1/2 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise and seeds scraped out
4 large egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon Wild Turkey liqueur
In a small saucepan, combine the milk with the vanilla bean and seeds and bring just to a boil. Remove from the heat and allow to infuse for 5 minutes, then strain out the vanilla pod. In an electric mixer or with a whisk, beat the egg yolks together with the sugar until the mixture is pale and thickened. Pour about a quarter of the hot milk into the egg-yolk mixture and mix until well combined, then return the yolk mixture to the pan with the rest of the milk and, over medium-low heat, stir continuously until thickened. Do not allow the mixture to boil. Strain it through a strainer into a clean pan and add Wild Turkey liqueur, to taste. Cool the sauce and refrigerate, covered, until chilled.

Croissants

4 croissants, cut in half horizontally
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. On a baking sheet, toast the croissant halves until golden, about 8 to 10 minutes, watching carefully so that they do not burn. Remove from the oven and when cool, break the croissants up into 1/2-inch pieces and set aside. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees F.

Custard

2 cups heavy cream
1/4 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise and seeds scraped out
5 large egg yolks
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
In a medium saucepan, heat the cream and the vanilla bean together over medium-high heat. Bring the cream to just below boiling point, then remove it from the heat and allow to infuse for 5 minutes. Strain out the vanilla pod. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until the mixture is pale and thickened. Gradually whisk the warm cream into the egg yolks and then return the mixture to a clean saucepan. Over medium-low heat, bring the mixture up to just below a boil, stirring all the time until thickened, and immediately remove it from the heat.

Finishing

8 ounces bittersweet bakers chocolate, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
Arrange an equal amount of toasted croissant pieces in each of six 8-ounce ramekins or ovenproof bowls. Distribute the chocolate chunks evenly among the ramekins. Spoon the warm custard over the mixture, pressing down with a fork to be sure all the pieces of croissant are soaked in the custard, and cover each ramekin tightly with aluminum foil. Place the ramekins in a roasting pan and pour in enough very hot water to come halfway up their sides. Bake in the hot oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until just set, then pierce the foil with a toothpick to release the steam and let stand for 5 minutes before removing the rest of the foil. (Note: At this stage you could cool and refrigerate the puddings for several hours or overnight. Warm them through in a 400-degree F oven for 4 to 5 minutes before serving.)

Dust the top of each warm pudding with a little powdered sugar and serve the chilled sauce in a sauceboat on the side.
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Wed 18 Jun, 2003 11:53 am
cav, That's enough calories for a whole month! It must be worth it. Wink c.i.
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