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Customers v Chefs


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I completely agree with Keith's opinion on the chef's vision. Yes it works for me, but not always for everyone. I think every owner needs to attract the customers that aren't quite as serious as us. Though I may share a chef's vision that doesn't mean everyone at my table feels the same way.

David Cooper

"I'm no friggin genius". Rob Dibble

http://www.starlinebyirion.com/

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The notion that "the customer is always right" isn't very realistic -- I mean c'mon obviously, it's completely untrue. "Le client est roi" is a far more constructive motto -- kings aren't always right...

They can be snooty, ignorant, ill tempered morons -- you know, the product of centuries of enthusiastic and fervent inbreeding, the likes of which would make the banjo player from 'Deliverance' look like a Nobel prize winning GQ cover model... Etc...

But he's still the king.

Don't get me wrong -- I do sympathize. I've been to restaurants with people so completely out of line I woulda paid good money to see the cook emerge from the kitchen and beat the bastard to death with a meat tenderizer.

In the end it just comes down to market economy: if you aren't willing to accommodate morons, someone's sure to snag the market from you. If your food is so good, and attracts so many people that you occasionally can tell moronic customers to take a hike, hey -- all the more power to you.

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Chef Koo, do you really get upset when someone asks to have no potato/rice and extra vegetables (or just no potato/rice and nevermind anything extra)? Does that compromise your artistic vision or whatever?

i don't own my own restaurant so i really do'nt have a right to be upset. but if i did. i would insist that people try it first and then make up their minds. if they don't like it then they can orde something else. if alot of people like what they eat than so be it. if alot of people don't like what they eat than so be it. people call me arrogant, but it's not that i think my way is beter than the customers or that the customer doesn't know anything about food. it's just that i want to cook what i want to cook. adn does that comprimise my artistic vision? of course not. i'm confident in who i am. what people think of me is their own opinion. but if i take what you say to heart than it would make no difference if i worked at burger king, a chinese restaurant, an indian restaurant, or whatever. i chose french cuisine. i would like to accomplish that

Sometimes it goes beyond what the diner wants to try however. I know I have seen lots of entrees involving lots of starch that look very tasty, and I would love to try them, but the fact remains that I can't eat those starches if I want to remain healthy and not obese, and for me at least, that outweighs a sheppard's pie.

I think it is important for chef's to understand that special requests are not an affront to them or their talent, but sometimes just a concious sacrifice being made by the diner as well. I am always very appreciative of any chef who is willing to sub extra veggies for a starch, after all, the main dish is still left intact, what does a change in one of the side items matter? I can even understand a nominal surcharge for the service.

When a chef gets into the mindset of only cranking out dishes exactly as they appear on the menu it removes a lot of the personal touch of independant run restaurants, and takes that chef one step closer to becoming an Applebee's assembly line operation.

He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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The notion that "the customer is always right" isn't very realistic -- I mean c'mon obviously, it's completely untrue. "Le client est roi" is a far more constructive motto -- kings aren't always right...

Don't get me wrong -- I do sympathize. I've been to restaurants with people so completely out of line I woulda paid good money to see the cook emerge from the kitchen and beat the bastard to death with a meat tenderizer.

Yes! Well said, Grub, on both points!

I'm a canning clean freak because there's no sorry large enough to cover the, "Oops! I gave you botulism" regrets.

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Chef Koo, do you really get upset when someone asks to have no potato/rice and extra vegetables (or just no potato/rice and nevermind anything extra)? Does that compromise your artistic vision or whatever?

i don't own my own restaurant so i really do'nt have a right to be upset. but if i did. i would insist that people try it first and then make up their minds. if they don't like it then they can orde something else. if alot of people like what they eat than so be it. if alot of people don't like what they eat than so be it. people call me arrogant, but it's not that i think my way is beter than the customers or that the customer doesn't know anything about food. it's just that i want to cook what i want to cook. adn does that comprimise my artistic vision? of course not. i'm confident in who i am. what people think of me is their own opinion. but if i take what you say to heart than it would make no difference if i worked at burger king, a chinese restaurant, an indian restaurant, or whatever. i chose french cuisine. i would like to accomplish that

Sometimes it goes beyond what the diner wants to try however. I know I have seen lots of entrees involving lots of starch that look very tasty, and I would love to try them, but the fact remains that I can't eat those starches if I want to remain healthy and not obese, and for me at least, that outweighs a sheppard's pie.

I think it is important for chef's to understand that special requests are not an affront to them or their talent, but sometimes just a concious sacrifice being made by the diner as well. I am always very appreciative of any chef who is willing to sub extra veggies for a starch, after all, the main dish is still left intact, what does a change in one of the side items matter? I can even understand a nominal surcharge for the service.

When a chef gets into the mindset of only cranking out dishes exactly as they appear on the menu it removes a lot of the personal touch of independant run restaurants, and takes that chef one step closer to becoming an Applebee's assembly line operation.

i don't think all restaurant should be like this. there's a place for comprimise and there's a place for strict adhereance to the menu. my original post wasn't so much about who's right. i was just wondering if our town was too customer-is-right oriented. in other words were restaurants too willing and ready to comply to the requests of customers. it just seems that customers have the expectation that restaurants should try and accomodate what you want and if they do'nt it means that it's a bad restaurnat. and in response restaurants think that it's bad business to not comply.

Edited by chef koo (log)

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Chef Koo -

That is an interesting question, but I still find myself in the camp of favoring with the customer. If it turns out that all the area wants at the moment is spaghetti noodles covered in ketchup, is it the duty of chefs in the area to force them to change? After all, maybe it is better to let the customers be happy and let the tastes evolve as they will.

He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

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I believe that the customer-waiter-chef relationship ends as soon as four letter curse words are shouted at each other to insult say the customer to the waiter. Then that person has every right to tell them to go to hell or something similar :raz:

"To invite a person to your house is to take charge of his (her) happiness for as long as he is under your roof."

Brillat Savarin

You don't have to like everything I make, but you still have to eat it.

A Co-Worker from Work

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Chef Koo -

That is an interesting question, but I still find myself in the camp of favoring with the customer.  If it turns out that all the area wants at the moment is spaghetti noodles covered in ketchup, is it the duty of chefs in the area to force them to change?[...]

No, but there are certain restaurants that would not serve such a concoction, and I'm glad about that. Different eateries cater to different clienteles. It's not necessary for a serious Italian restaurant to serve pasta with ketchup. It seems to me that what's important is for each restaurateur to know his/her audience and serve that audience ably.

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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Chef Koo -

That is an interesting question, but I still find myself in the camp of favoring with the customer.  If it turns out that all the area wants at the moment is spaghetti noodles covered in ketchup, is it the duty of chefs in the area to force them to change?  After all, maybe it is better to let the customers be happy and let the tastes evolve as they will.

i don't think all restaurants should be like me. it's all a matter of the preference of the chef. some chefs like to give what the customer wants and some like to give them what they want. different strokes for different folks. but i for one am in the camp of showcasing my food stuffs to the customer rather than allow the customer to change what i cook. but my original thought wasn't the whole who's right. i just thought that the restaurant industry was getting too "the-customer-is-always-right" oriented. people are so jaded by that mind set that it makes a restaurant look bad if they stick to their guns about the food they serve. i know alot of people base their judgemnt on the calibre of a chef not by their skill and technique and ability to creat flavor but by wether or not they get what they want. "oh this chef wouldn't serve me something without this sauce. he's a bad chef"

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Chef Koo -

That is an interesting question, but I still find myself in the camp of favoring with the customer.  If it turns out that all the area wants at the moment is spaghetti noodles covered in ketchup, is it the duty of chefs in the area to force them to change?  After all, maybe it is better to let the customers be happy and let the tastes evolve as they will.

i don't think all restaurants should be like me. it's all a matter of the preference of the chef. some chefs like to give what the customer wants and some like to give them what they want. different strokes for different folks. but i for one am in the camp of showcasing my food stuffs to the customer rather than allow the customer to change what i cook. but my original thought wasn't the whole who's right. i just thought that the restaurant industry was getting too "the-customer-is-always-right" oriented. people are so jaded by that mind set that it makes a restaurant look bad if they stick to their guns about the food they serve. i know alot of people base their judgemnt on the calibre of a chef not by their skill and technique and ability to creat flavor but by wether or not they get what they want. "oh this chef wouldn't serve me something without this sauce. he's a bad chef"

Um... can I ask a very silly question? Chef Koo, why did you become a chef? Reason I'm asking is because to me.... I'd think that a big part of the reason that one becomes a chef is because they want to feed and nourish people.

No doubt I'm being waaaaaay to simplistic here... but it seems like that should be a really big part of the point of choosing the career of food professional (it's certainly not for the money :laugh: ). Sure you get the mysterious alchemy of experimenting will all kinds of cool substances/ ingredients but ultimately.... it's the people you put the plate down in front of, who get to experience and enjoy what you've come up with, that matters. Surely making them happy, plays a fairly significant role in what you do?!?! I'm wondering how amending things a bit to suit dietary issues, allergies or foibles can really be such an issue when one starts out from the premise of making people happy.

Granted there are wack jobs out there who will never be pleased, but for the average patron, does it not behoove you (the universal you, not just Chef Koo) to go a tad out of your way to enhance your customers dining experience?

Edited by appreciator (log)

sarah

Always take a good look at what you're about to eat. It's not so important to know what it is, but it's critical to know what it was. --Unknown

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Um... can I ask a very silly question?  Chef Koo, why did you become a chef?  Reason I'm asking is because to me.... I'd think that a big part of the reason that one becomes a chef is because they want to feed and nourish people. 

No doubt I'm being waaaaaay to simplistic here...

. . . .

Why do people become painters? For some I'm sure it's the opportunity to make people's homes cleaner and brighter. For others it may just be the desire leave masterpiece works for posterity in museums. I'd never find it unreasonable for a chef to believe that pandering to people's personal tastes isn't a fulfilling way to nourish either the diner or the chef's life.

Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

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Four weeks ago, chef Gillian Clark of the Colorado Kitchen wrote a letter to Tom Sietsemsa of the Post (a recent eGullet Q&A guest).  She complained about customers who wanted to re-engineer her dishes to their own specifications, ignoring the time and effort she had spent designing them in the first place.  The backlash from readers was immediate, and blistering.  Diners expeted that when they are footing the bill, they should get exactly what they want.

In today's Post, Candy Sagon follows up on the story with Chefs Bite Back: In Some Cases, the Customer Isn't Always Right.  Bob Kinkead, Judy Rodgers, Susan Lindeborg, Tom Collicio (through his staff), and others weigh in on where the line between artistry and customer service should be drawn.

Anyone remember this particular discussion from about a year and a half ago, and the resulting brouhaha?

Link for reference

Food for thought.

Soba

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Okay, okay, okay. There seem to be quite a few threads on egullet covering similar topics.

Some thoughts and observations, I don't mean to repeat myself but I have quite a bit of work experience in fine dining.

1. Professional chefs don't sit around talking about their "art and vision" when the publicists aren't encouraging them to do so.

2. Being a chef is a trade/craft/art. All of those elements are intertwined. The chef/artist comparison to musician/artist or painter/artist isn't appropriate.

3. As a chef my customers decide if I'm an artist who's cooking they trust enough to "give in to". I can't force it on them.

4. A chef who rants about being an artist and a visionary to deft ears and cringing faces, is talking to the wrong audience or is doing something wrong. I don't really buy the "artist ahed of his/her time" argument, not in this day and age.

5. Customer says, "I don't like cumin."

I ask, "How have you had this spice before?".

Customer says, "Mexican food and Indian"

I explain, "the use of cumin is very different in Algerian cooking, perhaps a small taste and you change your mind"

Customer, "I really hate cumin."

I say, "Okay, these are dishes that do not contain cumin. I can't take the cumin out of premade soups and stews."

Customer says, "I want to have a special event, with a range of Algerian dishes, no cumin please."

I say, "Of course. Cumin isn't even necessary to make a dish authentically Algerian."

The point of these examples? I can't make a single tajine with no cumin a la minute, because I've already added spices throughout the slow cooking process. With a little advanced notice for a party of at least 4 let's say, I can prepare a seperate batch.

Let's say the dish is ras el hanout spiced monkfish. Well the spices are add a la minute so I can omit them a la minute. I can't pick all the olives out of a roasted pepper relish or make an entirely new batch of the relish a la minute, just because a customer doesn't like olives and asks when ordering.

6. French restaurant- If you're a vegetarian/vegan your pickings will be slim. I can take the Poulet out but you'll be left just with Sauce Forestiere. Not every dish on a menu is for everyone, not every restaurant is for everyone. Doesn't mean that the chef is wrong or that the customer is wrong. It means chef's have their audience. And the audience has a choice of chefs.

7. A customer who walks into a restaurant where I'm working and expects everything his/her way. Well a couple of years ago I applied at a private chef agency (I was considering a career change). The expected salary range for a chef with my training and experience is $70,000- over $100,000 a year. Full benefits, housing could include a very nice guest house on an estate, paid travel, generous time off, sometimes cooking for just one person or a couple. I just couldn't do it though. I felt that my career would just fizzle out when I got older. And it seemed a little too close to being domestic help, regardless of the pay. (I don't mean to offend anyone who works in such a capacity, that's my own hangup and it's a fanatastic job. I have friends who did it and they saved up enough money to open a restaurant withought having to deal with investors).

Customer vs Chef does not exist. It's not anyone versus anyone else. It's a dance of mutual respect. Respect doesn't include "dictating" to anyone.

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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Chef Koo -

That is an interesting question, but I still find myself in the camp of favoring with the customer.  If it turns out that all the area wants at the moment is spaghetti noodles covered in ketchup, is it the duty of chefs in the area to force them to change?  After all, maybe it is better to let the customers be happy and let the tastes evolve as they will.

i don't think all restaurants should be like me. it's all a matter of the preference of the chef. some chefs like to give what the customer wants and some like to give them what they want. different strokes for different folks. but i for one am in the camp of showcasing my food stuffs to the customer rather than allow the customer to change what i cook. but my original thought wasn't the whole who's right. i just thought that the restaurant industry was getting too "the-customer-is-always-right" oriented. people are so jaded by that mind set that it makes a restaurant look bad if they stick to their guns about the food they serve. i know alot of people base their judgemnt on the calibre of a chef not by their skill and technique and ability to creat flavor but by wether or not they get what they want. "oh this chef wouldn't serve me something without this sauce. he's a bad chef"

Um... can I ask a very silly question? Chef Koo, why did you become a chef? Reason I'm asking is because to me.... I'd think that a big part of the reason that one becomes a chef is because they want to feed and nourish people.

No doubt I'm being waaaaaay to simplistic here... but it seems like that should be a really big part of the point of choosing the career of food professional (it's certainly not for the money :laugh: ). Sure you get the mysterious alchemy of experimenting will all kinds of cool substances/ ingredients but ultimately.... it's the people you put the plate down in front of, who get to experience and enjoy what you've come up with, that matters. Surely making them happy, plays a fairly significant role in what you do?!?! I'm wondering how amending things a bit to suit dietary issues, allergies or foibles can really be such an issue when one starts out from the premise of making people happy.

Granted there are wack jobs out there who will never be pleased, but for the average patron, does it not behoove you (the universal you, not just Chef Koo) to go a tad out of your way to enhance your customers dining experience?

i tell all my friends this. i don't care if my food is liked or disliked. as long as i'm happy with it. i have picky friends who do'nt like a certain ingredient. i'll make something with that ingredient anyways. if they know they'll pick something up. i'm not offended. they're not offended. if people like my food they'll eat it. ifthey don't they won't eat it. making people happy is not why i became a chef. i became a chef because i like cooking

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i tell all my friends this. i don't care if my food is liked or disliked. as long as i'm happy with it. i have picky friends who do'nt like a certain ingredient. i'll make something with that ingredient anyways. if they know they'll pick something up. i'm not offended. they're not offended. if people like my food they'll eat it. ifthey don't they won't eat it. making people happy is not why i became a chef. i became a chef because i like cooking

Thanks for answering my question... you became a chef because you like cooking.

If I may say however, it seems as though the response to your cooking (i.e. from those eating what you've made) seems to weigh somewhat lightly on what you do. Now I may be wrong about this but from reading your posts above and elsewhere... that's what I get.

Interesting perspective. You don't care how people react to what you do, you just want to cook what you want to cook. (that's what I'm understanding you to be saying here in any case... I may be wrong.)

My gut reaction is... good gawd if this person doesn't care about how I react to what he's prepared for me then, I don't want to eat his food. (though I very well may because we do live in the same city :blink: )

But....

On the other hand, I wonder if I'd feel the same way about people in other creative professions.

Don't know. It's something to ponder.

Seems to me though that a lot of this is about respect. If someone has some wacko food requests or allergies etc., it behooves you to phone about it in advance. On the other hand, if you get to a restaurant and just want extra veggies and no potatoes.... that shouldn't be a problem either. IMNSHO :smile:

sarah

Always take a good look at what you're about to eat. It's not so important to know what it is, but it's critical to know what it was. --Unknown

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On the other hand, if you get to a restaurant and just want extra veggies and no potatoes.... that shouldn't be a problem either.  IMNSHO  :smile:

This is an oversimplification. One request out of two thousand covers is probably not unreasonable, but that rarely happens as I'm sure we both know.

Soba

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Is the customer right ? What about my vision or artistry ? Who rules and who is right ?

From what perspective ? That is perhaps the question, or at least part of it.

From my perspective - the customer is not always right but they are the customer.

I am the Chef and Owner of my restaurant is a restaurant district with lots of choices. Our restaurant is the sole source of income in our house and I employ 20 people who depend on me and my particular business / vision / style for their income for their families. My guests, just by the fact that they came through my door have decided that they like something about what we have to offer. They may not like it exactly the way I offer it and sometimes request changes. At this point in my life, I have decided that this is not a battle that I really wish to fight everyday. I have enough trouble with my four year old, guests requests do not bother me anymore. Have it the way you want it. My printed menu outlines the way I do it, my contact at the table might re-inforce that but in the end, if you want it modified in a particualr way for what ever reason, I will do my best to make you happy. No reasonable request is refused. I got into the business because I enjoy cooking and I enjoy making people happy. I am not here to ram my particualr style down their throats or jump up and down and scream about my artistry or vision. THere are other chefs out there breaking new grounds with cool and innovative cooking and people visit them for that very reason. People visit me for a good meal in a comfortable surrounding that makes them happy. I see nothing wrong with that. When I dine out at a cool, innovative, visionary restaurant, I go for the experience and do not wish to make any changes.

Chef Koo, on the other hand, has a different perspective.

He is young - approx 22 to 24 years old, working in a nice seafood restaurant under another Chef, who, in turn, is working for an owner. He can afford to say that he wants to hold firm to his artistry. He has nothing at stake. To say you became a Chef because you like cooking, yet are not concerned about making people happy seems a little odd. What are you cooking for if the end result is not to have people enjoy what you do. As it is not your menu where you work, what do you care if people want to make changes. Are you emotionally bonded to every item ?

Perhaps a change in perspective might cause you to re-think your position. Your paycheque is based upon your ability to show up on time and execute tasks dictated by someone else. My paycheque is based upon making people happy with good food in surroundings that make them want to return again and again. Would you turn people away at the door who did not subscribe to your vision ? Hold the pickle, hold the lettuce, special orders do upset us - please go away. Let's talk in a few years and see you how things have changed.

Edited by nwyles (log)

Neil Wyles

Hamilton Street Grill

www.hamiltonstreetgrill.com

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i had this huge post written but this is turning into a matter of personal views and opinions. if people want to eat what i cook for them thena they'll come to me. if they want a good hanger steak (i'm coming in for one of these niel) then they'll go to you. i'm not trying to force anyone to look at things my way. if they want to that's their choice. i would like for my customers (if when when i get my own restaurant) to make up their own damn mind

and you're right. i do lack perspective. in a few years let's see if my ideals ahev changed. i have a feeling they won't

Edited by chef koo (log)

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i had this huge post written but this is turning into a matter of personal views and opinions. if people want to eat what i cook for them thena they'll come to me. if they want a good hanger steak (i'm coming in for one of these niel) then they'll go to you. i'm not trying to force anyone to look at things my way. if they want to that's their choice. i would like for my customers (if when when i get my own restaurant) to make up their own damn mind

and you're right. i do lack perspective. in a few years let's see if my ideals ahev changed. i have a feeling they won't

Are you related to ee cummings? There are shift keys on both sides of the keyboard... :rolleyes:

edit: I am no Jamie Maw...

Edited by cubilularis (log)

To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art La Rochefoucauld

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Are you related to e.e.cummings?  There are shift keys on both sides of the keyboard... :rolleyes:

Brilliant - but wasn't it ee cummings and not e.e.cummings? :raz:

Neil - that's the best answer I've heard yet in a thread that I honestly thought would garner no more than a handful of replies.

Allan Brown

"If you're a chef on a salary, there's usually a very good reason. Never, ever, work out your hourly rate."

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Are you related to e.e.cummings?  There are shift keys on both sides of the keyboard... :rolleyes:

Brilliant - but wasn't it ee cummings and not e.e.cummings? :raz:

Neil - that's the best answer I've heard yet in a thread that I honestly thought would garner no more than a handful of replies.

Anything about chefs vs customers and tipping gets a huge number of replies on egullet. Giving the impression that they are huge problems in these areas. :raz:

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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Anything about chefs vs customers and tipping gets a huge number of replies on egullet. Giving the impression that they are huge problems in these areas.  :raz:

I can't remember the origin of this, but someone will no doubt enlighten me...

"Stress is the confusion created when the mind overrides the body's natural desire to choke the living shit out of some arsehole who unquestionably deserves it"

Allan Brown

"If you're a chef on a salary, there's usually a very good reason. Never, ever, work out your hourly rate."

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Interesting. Do I understand it correctly? Flexibility versus rigidity? The Dag Hammarskjold/Nadia Comaneci School of Chefly Philosophy versus the Joe Stalin School of My Way Or I'll Kill You?

Two things leap to mind. My friend, who does suffer a pretty severe allergy, is always thoughtful enough to call ahead and organize a couple of dishes (isn't this what restaurant webites are for?) so that he doesn't slow the evening down. Go team: Everybody's happy and the Chef's culinary vision can remain 20-20.

On the other hand, there's always the restaurant that won't budge. Most famously, for Jack Nicholson:

Dupea: OK, I'll make it as easy for you as I can. I'd like an omelette, plain, and a chicken salad sandwich on wheat toast, no mayonnaise, no butter, no lettuce. And a cup of coffee.

Waitress: A number two, chicken sal san, hold the butter, the lettuce and the mayonnaise. And a cup of coffee. Anything else?

Dupea: Yeah. Now all you have to do is hold the chicken, bring me the toast, give me a check for the chicken salad sandwich, and you haven't broken any rules.

Waitress (spitefully): You want me to hold the chicken, huh?

Dupea: I want you to hold it between your knees.

I enjoyed Neil's lucid remarks about the absolute requirement to understand and then satisfy the needs of the customer, but more especially, why:

I am the Chef and Owner of my restaurant is a restaurant district with lots of choices. Our restaurant is the sole source of income in our house and I employ 20 people who depend on me and my particular business / vision / style for their income for their families. My guests, just by the fact that they came through my door have decided that they like something about what we have to offer.

While I can't recall the last time I substituted an item (especially spaghetti for linguine), surely reasonable requests should be politely met. My own pet peeve is when the protein arrives on top of the mashed potatoes, virtually ensuring that the steak/chop/what-have-you will be steamed.

As was Jack.

Edited by jamiemaw (log)

from the thinly veneered desk of:

Jamie Maw

Food Editor

Vancouver magazine

www.vancouvermagazine.com

Foodblog: In the Belly of the Feast - Eating BC

"Profumo profondo della mia carne"

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  • 8 months later...
Not all special requests are alike.  If a customer requests a piece of meat well-done because they have an immune deficiency, it should be prepared well-done no questions asked.  If they request it well done because they haven't been educated to appreciate properly cooked meat, the waiter should come back and suggest a more appropriate done-ness, and explain the reasoning behind it.  IF the customer still insists on well-done, it should be prepared this way.

no questions asked? is the diner supposed to disclose his/her immune status, or how is it determined why the request is being made? i would opine that the diner's immune status is his or her own business, and not to be determined by the server.

Well, yeah. I took it to mean that "no questions asked" means "no questions asked". Maybe I am missing something in this exchange? I mean, if a customer says up front that they want something well done, the worst you should do is a very gentle offering that you normally serve the item MR, because of "this, that or the other" reason.

I have born and raised a young man who wants his beef well done, under any circumstance. I make accomadations in my home for his taste, and yes he has had the opportunity to sample beef in rarer states, and a requirement in my home is that you must at least "try it" before you condemn anything. In a paying circumstance, would I put a plate in front of a customer that would make them sick from the visual? No. That is just rude. The customer is a guest.

If a customer requests something that is detrimental to the item they are ordering, then a bit of education after consultation with the chef, is in order. If the customer is a flake, then they are a flake. A flake is easily identified. If it is physically impossible to fullfill the request, then the customer must suck it up. Otherwise, the hot - tired - grumpy - chef should do the best they can with what they have on hand. Great chef's can please anybody.

All reasonable requests should be accomodated, 1 or 2 or 3 or 4 or 5 star whatever the rating is. Reasonable includes doneness of protein, omission of sauces, or substitution of sides.

After all, it is a free country, and if you like your tuna well done and are willing to pay for it, then you should be able to get your tuna well done as long as there is a heat source available to cook it to that temp.

Just my opinion. I always pay for those...

:huh:

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