Author Topic: What do you expect when dining out?  (Read 6505 times)

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Katana_Geldar

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #45 on: January 08, 2013, 06:11:59 PM »
Lilac, would you prefer the jug or bottle left on the table for you to refill at your leisure?

CluelessBride

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #46 on: January 08, 2013, 07:51:58 PM »
Me too on waitpersons who hover over me when I'm trying to eat but I also like to have my water refilled frequently and sometimes they never come back much.  I also don't like to give my name if they ask because I'm very private and they don't need to know my name but it's hard to say no without seeming rude. Luckily it doesn't happen often., LilacRosey

You can always make one up. You don't even have to lie about it, just answer their question, "You can call me Lilac."  I can't recall ever having a server ask my name, but I do have a stage name I use for karaoke. It's kind of fun to have a pseudo-secret identity.

JeanFromBNA

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #47 on: January 08, 2013, 07:53:43 PM »
I was once welcomed back from the restroom.  Awkward.  ::)

snowdragon

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #48 on: January 08, 2013, 08:26:51 PM »


I was once welcomed back from the restroom.  Awkward.  ::)

I come from a HUGE family. Absolutely huge - grandfather on my father's side had 21 siblings,  we knew all of them growing up and slowly lost track of them as adults. My mom's side was smaller but not by much.
 So I have cousins, upon cousins running around the area - some I have never met.  Last Thursday my best friend and I  went to the local diner to eat and the waitress was kind of looking at me strangely, through the whole dinner, at one point she said " feel like  I know you from somewhere" and kept hanging around being extra solicitous to myself and everyone around us.  Annoying. 
  At the end of the dinner she brings the check, and I leave my credit card there, intending to take it up. She comes by offers to take the card and comes back with your name is longPolishnamethatmostpeoplecan't pronounce, pronounces correctly ( which usually means she's a food and knows the local chef by the same name) and asks "do you know Irene?" I repsond with that "That's my mom" and she introduces herself as my cousin's kid whom I have not seen since she was in those sacks that folk put babies in...literally that long.  She was a really sweet kid ( high school aged) - it's not something I expect when I eat out, and it was kind of weird.
 
 I think that sometimes waitstaff can't win, but I do expect that things like customers who are out of of control = no matter why they are out of control, or their age, will be dealt with, I expect my water glass will be kept full and that questions will be answered honestly, beyond that I am easy

Lynn2000

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #49 on: January 08, 2013, 08:30:53 PM »
Wow, servers really can't win, can they?

This is what I think sometimes. Apparently a lot of people don't like to get the check right away, because they feel like they're being rushed out. As I mentioned, my dad is just the opposite--he wants the check available not long after he takes his last bite, and the whole transaction finished quickly. He doesn't like to sit around and linger. I would guess he's not in the majority, but I doubt it's as rare as 1% of diners or something like that. So someone who thinks they're doing a good job of leaving us alone towards the end of the meal--what many people want--is actually just irritating him.

In that case, I think Dad needs to indicate to the server that he would like their attention, and ask for the check. Server needs to be aware enough of what's going on that it's easy to catch their eye.

Oh, I agree. I always start looking around for the server, too, because I know he's going to get impatient. I feel like 85% of them completely disappear right as we are finishing our meals. This happens in lots of different restaurants, so maybe we're giving off some kind of vibe opposite to what we want?
~Lynn2000

VltGrantham

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #50 on: January 09, 2013, 09:40:05 AM »
Quote
I can't recall ever having a server ask my name, but I do have a stage name I use for karaoke. It's kind of fun to have a pseudo-secret identity.

Reminds me of that scene from Friends:

Phoebe:  Hi, I'm Regina Filange!
Joey:  Ken Adams, nice to meet you!

Quote
Wow, servers really can't win, can they?

Like most jobs working with the general public, I imagine it's a pretty thankless task.  Everybody has their own preferences and it does help to communicate them in advance to the server (that is, if they are willing to listen and heed).  If you want the check on the table as soon as your entree is brought out, then say so.  Personally, I want a to-go box the moment my meal is served.  That is because I automatically put half in the box -- sometimes 2/3 depending on what it is.  This is done for dietary reasons so that I will not overeat.

I always ask for the box in advance--at the same time that I place my order.  However, I can count on one hand the times that the server has actually complied with my request.  If they can't bring it out at the same time, in a few moments is fine, but the box needs to arrive quickly.  And I've sat there, waiting, because I know if I start, I'm gonna eat too much.  It's just easier to scoop the food out and get it out of sight, out of mind.

Thipu1

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #51 on: January 09, 2013, 09:55:32 AM »
I was once welcomed back from the restroom.  Awkward.  ::)

I may be able to go one better on this.  At the extra tariff restaurant on the Millenium, I was escorted to the rest room and escorted back to the table by a server in a tail coat, striped trousers and white gloves.   

I was not drunk and the seas were calm. Still, it was hard not to break into giggles.

Venus193

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #52 on: January 09, 2013, 09:56:59 AM »
 ???  Egad; that's excessive.   :-[

Thipu1

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #53 on: January 09, 2013, 10:37:45 AM »
???  Egad; that's excessive.   :-[

We have an idea what may have been the rationale behind this and it makes sense. 

The extra tariff restaurant cost an additional 20 USD per person.  The place had a set menu.  Think of the last First Class Dinner served on the 'Titanic'.  There was course after course of very rich food. 

Cruise lines also know that some pax can be extremely cheap.  It just could have been possible that I would go to the rest room and disappear while another woman came to take my place and eat the rest of the meal.  Stranger things have happened on ships. 

My 'escort' was there to make sure that the same woman who left the table returned to the table. 

Yes, it was excessive.  No, it was not irrational.


Lynn2000

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #54 on: January 09, 2013, 10:46:30 AM »
Personally, I want a to-go box the moment my meal is served.  That is because I automatically put half in the box -- sometimes 2/3 depending on what it is.  This is done for dietary reasons so that I will not overeat.

I always ask for the box in advance--at the same time that I place my order.  However, I can count on one hand the times that the server has actually complied with my request.  If they can't bring it out at the same time, in a few moments is fine, but the box needs to arrive quickly.  And I've sat there, waiting, because I know if I start, I'm gonna eat too much.  It's just easier to scoop the food out and get it out of sight, out of mind.

This reminds me of how, when I order water to drink, the servers will often ask if I want a lemon in it. I don't, so I say no. Usually, the people I'm with do want one. I am always impressed when the server actually brings out my water with NO lemon, and everyone else's WITH lemon--that is, correctly. It is NOT a big deal if I get a lemon in my water; but when they get it wrong, I always think--you're the one who asked me about the lemon. If you weren't going to take special note of the answer and try really hard to get it right, why bother to ask? Just bring everyone water with lemon like it's not optional and be done with it.

With a to-go box ordered that early, you'd think it would be novel (and EASY!) enough that they would remember it and bring it on time...
~Lynn2000

chigrrl1

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #55 on: January 09, 2013, 11:08:57 AM »
I don't think I've ever been the victim of over attentive service.  Maybe it's just our local culture here, but casual chatting with waitstaff is the norm when me and Hubs go out.  I like to get to know the workers at places we frequent regularly, it just seems the friendly thing to do.  Obviously, interrupting business or visibly "serious" conversations for unnecessary service is impolite, but I like to establish a good rapport with the people who handle my food.  In fancy schmancy restaurants (40$ entree dealios), a more formal attitude is generally the norm.  But, if you're going out for a sandwich and drinks, I like to talk to staff about the food, local events etc...not to the point of taking a busy server away from their job, but just for pleasant (and often informative!) interaction. 

LilacRosey

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #56 on: January 09, 2013, 05:34:37 PM »
Lilac, would you prefer the jug or bottle left on the table for you to refill at your leisure?

Yes that would be perfect for me!, LilacRosey

Lady Snowdon

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #57 on: January 09, 2013, 10:00:10 PM »
When I dine out, I expect the staff to be courteous and helpful.  I'd like it if they knew the menu well enough to answer any questions I have.  It'd be really nice if the server knew what beers were on tap, or if there were any special drinks available.  I do expect servers to check on me every so often, to make sure everything is still fine, or to remove items I'm no longer using.  I absolutely hate it when someone drops my food off and disappears for fifteen to twenty minutes, sometimes even longer, before reappearing to ask how everything is.  I know I eat fast, especially when I'm really hungry, but I shouldn't be finishing my meal before the server shows up again!  I also think that, if a restaurant offers dessert, dessert should be offered as a choice.  Showing up with my check while I'm debating if I want dessert is going to decide me in favor of no dessert, and thus lose the restaurant and server money. 

Lynn2000

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #58 on: January 10, 2013, 10:47:03 AM »
Interesting experience eating out last night that reminded me of this thread. My dad ordered a special that included two meats--like lobster and steak. When it came out, one was fine, but the other was kind of cold. He put the good one on a separate plate and asked the server to warm the cold one up. In terms of textbook hospitality management, I think the restaurant did exactly what they were supposed to (and maybe even more)--the server apologized, the manager came over to apologize, they made my dad a whole new piece of the meat he sent back which was easily twice as large as his original, and they gave us a free dessert.

Of course, what my dad really would have preferred was that they just zap his original piece of meat in the microwave, and bring it right back out. He finished his other meat and then just sat there with nothing to do while Mom and I ate; and then when they brought his new meat out, we had to sit and wait for him to eat it all. And it was more than he had wanted to eat. And he's trying to lose weight, so he had one or two bites of the dessert and that was it. (Of course my mom and I polished that off for him!) And, we didn't know that they were planning to make him a whole new piece of meat or give us a free dessert--if they had asked, he would've just said to warm up the meat somehow, it's no big deal.

So I'm not saying he was mad or anything, and I think we were all impressed with the service on a certain level, but it was actually almost too much for what he perceived as a minor problem that could've had a quick fix. Yeah, they just can't win, can they?  :-\
~Lynn2000

CakeEater

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Re: What do you expect when dining out?
« Reply #59 on: January 10, 2013, 06:17:15 PM »

So I'm not saying he was mad or anything, and I think we were all impressed with the service on a certain level, but it was actually almost too much for what he perceived as a minor problem that could've had a quick fix. Yeah, they just can't win, can they?  :-\

I agree with your dad in this situation, and no, I guess they can't win. Because lady Snowdon said above that she wants the waitstaff back before her meal is finished to ask how it is. I would find that excessive. There's really no way for the poor waitstaff to know who would like which kind of service.

I know it's a difficult, thankless job, so I try to be extra nice, regardless.