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Old 03-22-2012, 01:44 PM   #1
CreamyGoodness
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As the title of the thread implies, this matter is almost completely unimportant. My annoyance registers somewhere around a 2, meaning it is over almost as quickly as it started. No waiter or pretty little heads were harmed in the making of this thread. I just wonder if anyone else feels the same way about this admittedly unimportant topic.

Whenever I have ordered certain dishes, most notedly brisket of beef noodle soup in Chinatowns throughout the country (this has happened, with the same soup, in several New York restaurants, once in Boston, and once in San Francisco) the waiter takes it upon himself or herself to let me know why I might not like it.

When ordering spicy pig kidney last year, for example, the waitress asked me if I knew what kidneys were. I did. She took it one step farther in bringing out the restaurant owner who spoke fluent English, just in case she hadnt gotten her point across. About 10 minutes into the meal the owner came back out to make sure I didnt want him to take the dish away.

There are two ways to look at these behaviors, I think. You can either see it as vague racism, asssuming that a very obviously caucasian english-speaker would have certain expectations when eating food, precluding certain flavors and foods, or you could just see it as good service. I suppose there is a guy out there who might order the kidney by accident, not knowing what it is.

My question is this, should the waiter caution diners that what they are ordering might be out of the usual realm of what they most likely have consumed, or should they mind their own business and stay silent on the matter?

For the record, I never snark regarding this, and tips are not at all affected. Just a little eye rolling when the waiter leaves.
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Old 03-22-2012, 02:04 PM   #2
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For the record, I enjoy your "thoughts of the day."

My first question is what prompted the waiter/owner to feel like he needs to disclose...it would seem to imply he's received complaints about this dish in the past and/or had upset customers. So, in an effort to prevent that from happening again, he/she feels its necessary to disclose. Just a guess.

I'd say, "Thanks for letting me know, and yes I still want it."

 
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Old 03-22-2012, 02:13 PM   #3
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Thanks, I was getting worried that I was annoying some folks.

Every time I have ordered the brisket soup (its fabulous by the way) they always warn me that there is fat. Apparently some people really dislike fat on a cut of meat that is inherantly fatty... lol.
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See, that's where the real story is.
In the competition for the attention of the space aliens.
Everyone's equal in the eyes of God, but the space aliens, you've got to figure they would play favorites.




YES, WE HAVE TRIED OTHER YEASTS! USE BREAD YEAST FOR JAOM!


 
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Old 03-22-2012, 02:22 PM   #4
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Brisket soup seems like a stretch, but with kidney dishes I can see them making sure you knew what you were getting into. I've seen a few mexican restaurants give me weird looks for ordering beef tongue or cheek tacos.
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Old 03-22-2012, 02:30 PM   #5
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I've had this happen many times. I attribute it like Ty said, to previous diners ordering the dish and not liking it or complaining. Restaurants don't want you to have a bad experience. After 20 people order the brisket and complain, they just want to warn you in case you are one that would have complained.

Too many people are idiots these days (I.E. McDonalds, "the coffee was hot?") and expect the restaurant or whatever provider to make up for it. So unfortunately those of us that are up to snuff get treated as the lowest common denominator dictates.

I never take it as white guy racism, just them offering a friendly warning.

 
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Old 03-22-2012, 02:41 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CreamyGoodness View Post
As the title of the thread implies, this matter is almost completely unimportant.
We're accustomed to that.

 
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:29 PM   #7
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I would guess it's mostly due to previous customer complaints as others have mentioned. Restaurants obviously don't want unhappy customers, but they also don't want the lost revenue of someone sending a dish back because they weren't properly warned about the contents, heat, etc of a dish. I doubt it's a race issue. My guess is that they warn everyone that they don't recognize as a regular customer.

 
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:33 PM   #8
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My guess is that they didn't want to have to throw it out.

 
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:49 PM   #9
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Yep, suck it up. They have had too many idiots order it, assuring the staff that they can "handle any level of spicy!" only to send it back as inedible and then not only waste the restaraunts money, but probably to talk badly about the restaraunt for what was clearly their fault.

Just show your adeptness with chopsticks, tell them next time you would like it hotter, and next time they will remember you.

 
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Old 03-22-2012, 03:59 PM   #10
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Thats really a good point cheezy, I hadnt thought of that. Btw, the place I mentioned with the pig kidney is in Flushing (which everyone knows is a superior Chinatown to Canal St. ;-), back me up on this Airbourneguy...) I forget the name but it had a lot of off-the-beaten-path dishes on the menu, which is why my friend and I went. After the mild hubbub with the pig kidney I continued ordering, and got a plate of ducks feet in scallion sauce for the table. The waitress literally sighed. I got a chuckle out of that.

If you are wondering, the dan-dan noodles were a 5 alarm fire (delicious too), the spicy kidney wasnt all that spicy but had lots of great flavor, and ducks feet are now officially not my favorite thing in the world to eat. Bland and hard to eat.
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See, that's where the real story is.
In the competition for the attention of the space aliens.
Everyone's equal in the eyes of God, but the space aliens, you've got to figure they would play favorites.




YES, WE HAVE TRIED OTHER YEASTS! USE BREAD YEAST FOR JAOM!


 
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