Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
Kouign Aman

How to thank the kitchen?

Recommended Posts

The other night three of us arrived at opening time and were seated in view of the kitchen. Tables coming in after us were having orders taken and delivered. We were being ignored. One of the kitchen folk noticed us and pointed us out to a server, where upon we were asked for our order. Unfortunately, we were on a tight schedule from the getgo, and this had taken a serious chunk of it, so we asked what was fast. The waiter asked, the cooks/chef said 'all of it' and things went well from there on out.

How to thanks the folks behind the flame, who saved us from a hungry night?

(We said thanks, but we'll be back solely because of that attentiveness, and want to know the most appropriate way, for now and in case of future incidents at other places).


"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Offer to buy the kitchen a round. Or, if the place is relatively laid back, bring them some beer or a respectable bottle of brown liquor on your next visit. The Publican had an item on the menu for awhile (not sure if it's still there) where you could buy the kitchen a 6-pack.


True rye and true bourbon wake delight like any great wine...dignify man as possessing a palate that responds to them and ennoble his soul as shimmering with the response.

DeVoto, The Hour

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are pros and cons about sending drinks to the kitchen. I can think of a few obvious pitfalls, like the assumption that everybody on the staff that one wishes to thank actually consumes alcohol.

Here's a previous thread discussing it:

"Sending drinks to the kitchen."

______________________


Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

$, and don't be stingy. Remember the expo, line cooks, prep, steward.

Your shiny $100 bill will look like $5 after it's pooled.

Otherwise, a thoughtful, hand-written note will go far for morale

if they really have souls of a chef. AND, You will most likely be remembered

when when you return.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I generally ask the server to go back and ask the chefs if they'd like a drink, and if so, what they'd prefer. If so, it's on me (and I've bought good champagne for the kitchen under this rule). Otherwise, I send a directed tip with a hand-written note.

However, in my favourite restaurant (Taberno Gitano in Quito), Chef Portillo actually comes out and talks to me near the end of the meal. (He does this with all clients, even when the restaurant is full - 10 tables) I then have the option of sharing the excellent wine with him while we discuss dessert options.


Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.

My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does sending out some money tip doesn't look good? I tried it once and I am not sure if its appropriate.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a cook i can not say that i have ever been upset about a tip, but honestly just dont let our waiters mistakes stop you from coming and eating my food. that is the best reward

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've bought drinks and tipped, but I really like the Japanese tradition of saying a very loud "Goshiso sama deshita"(Thank you for a good meal) when you exit a restaurant. The staff is always appreciative when they hear a foreigner say it. If you travel to Japan, don't hesitate to say it.


Edited by Foodietopo (log)

My blog about food in Japan

Foodie Topography

www.foodietopography.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depending on the style of restaurant, a more informal thankyou like buying a beer is well appreciated, but someone who has dined there 4-5 times in their week long holiday (I used to work on a holiday island) coming into the kitchen at the end of their stay to thank you for your hospitality over the week is also very well recieved. It depends on the context.


James.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The flaws with money and alcohol have been noted. It may not seem like much, but asking to go to the kitchen or stopping by the line if the kitchen is open for some heartfelt gushing can go a long way. Often the cooks never see the guests and get limited feedback, so it can be really nice to see an actual patron who is really happy and satisfied, instead of just hearing that people liked it from the servers. Positive reviews on yelp are good too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My biggest thanks is my completely genuine and heartfelt repeat business, and always letting the server know how much I like the food- including any specifics (like the dinosaur kale side dish on Saturday that had been sauteed in rendered porchetta fat.....wa wa weee wa...).

Funny, a lady Saturday night unintentially made me think of this thread.... One thing I do to thank the kitchen is to NOT be the customer who is so happy with their food (and their fourth martini) that they run back into the kitchen and start hugging on the chef and yacking away at the peak of Saturday night's business....TWICE. I'm the fellow who stays out of the way on Saturday night and gives you big praise on your Facebook page when I get home!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This past Saturday at the end of a great meal I asked the waiter if we could buy the kitchen a round. He looked a little surprised and had to talk to the chef, but came back a few minutes later with a few options. He explained that as the cooks and chef cleans the kitchen they typically split a 12 pack. That Saturday night the beer was on us.

This way we didn't have to interrupt their workflow since the kitchen was busy as we were leaving and didn't need a distraction, but they certainly looked like they could use a beer.


Andrew Vaserfirer aka avaserfi

Host, eG Forums

avaserfirer@egstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've bought drinks and tipped, but I really like the Japanese tradition of saying a very loud "Goshiso sama deshita"(Thank you for a good meal) when you exit a restaurant. The staff is always appreciative when they hear a foreigner say it. If you travel to Japan, don't hesitate to say it.

...with a minor correction. "Gochiso sama deshita".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tipping or buying beer are both nice, but I would add writing (emailing, tweeting, Facebooking, whatever) the BOSS praising his wonderful kitchen staff would be good, too. Especially when you say this is one reason apart from the good food that you'll be back.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a friend who uses the "Please give my compliments to the chef. The dish was "insert brief phrase" - she does it in a sincere way that I think makes the server actually convey the message. This is not in high end but small local restaurants.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here is the original : ごちそうさまでした sorry for the bad transliteration.

I've bought drinks and tipped, but I really like the Japanese tradition of saying a very loud "Goshiso sama deshita"(Thank you for a good meal) when you exit a restaurant. The staff is always appreciative when they hear a foreigner say it. If you travel to Japan, don't hesitate to say it.

...with a minor correction. "Gochiso sama deshita".


My blog about food in Japan

Foodie Topography

www.foodietopography.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some thoughts on this topic...................

1) You tip the waitron 15-20% of the entire bill, that is, the entire dining experience. Obviously the waitron works hard, but equally obviously, is not responsible for the entire dining experience.

2) After tipping the waitron, many think a simple verbal thank you (or tweet or f.b. comment) is sufficient for the cooks.

3) Many think that beverages are an ideal tip for cooks. As was explained in other related threads, drinking in the kitchen is not only dangerous, but illegal, and in the worst case scenerio can result in hefty fines, or closures.

I have worked in many establishements in my 30-odd years as a cook and Chef. I have seen many waitrons and Maitre D's pocket money entrusted to them by customers expressly for the kitchen. I have witnessed "good" customers phone ahead and request for an off-the-menu item, which puts a significant amount of stress on the kitchen, and tip the waitron generously for "his work", while dabbing thier lips on a napkin and telling the waiter to "tell the kitchen the meal was excellent". I have witnessed arguements and fights when tips were given to the kitchen.

Tipping in N.America is very very strange. Which State in the U.S. is it illegal not to tip, and the establishment has the right to call the Police and have the non-tipper arrested?

Obviously, the best method is tip sharing, as every employee in the establishment is responsible for the entire dining experience.

Oh, and on a final note. What do you tip someone who provides excellent service/food? If that peson is the owner, the answer is usually nothing. For some reason owners are exempt from rieceving tips. Ask any owner.......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yesterday, toward the tail end of a two day conference for a nonprofit organization(about 200 in attendence), the Executive Director of the organization asked the entire food staff of the conference center to come out and be acknowledged by the conference participants. I thought that was pretty classy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I spot it and "nom" it on Foodspotting. Then I write about it on facebook, since my husband is obsessed with checking us in everywhere we go. If the restaurant has a website with an email and the meal was particularly good, I will email the owner (or whoever checks the email, but all the responses I've gotten have been from owners) telling them what I liked and why I'm planning on returning. I do quite a few of my reservations through Open Table and I make it a point to go review the experience if it was a good one. But I guess the biggest compliment I give is my repeat patronage of the restaurant, when there are so many amazing places to eat around Portland.


If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My favorite restaurants each get a box of assorted cookies (home baked) at the holidays.

When you're within view of the kitchen, or can talk to the chef, a heartfelt thanks is pretty welcomed.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

mweinstein@eGstaff.org

Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My favorite restaurants each get a box of assorted cookies (home baked) at the holidays.

When you're within view of the kitchen, or can talk to the chef, a heartfelt thanks is pretty welcomed.

i like that! I bake dozens and dozens of dog treats and give them to my favorite restaurants at the holidays. Everyone has been thrilled as they can take something

home to their beloved pooch who often is without their owner much of the time. I've also made yarn lei for dogs that have been well received.

IMG_5227.JPG


"You can't miss with a ham 'n' egger......"

Ervin D. Williams 9/1/1921 - 6/8/2004

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...