10 Things You Should Never Do In A Restaurant (If You Don’t Want To Piss Off The Staff)

20140205-213602.jpgFor those of us in the service industry, a good day at work depends hugely on the customers. Depending on what types of customers walk in the door and how they behave, work can be a pleasurable, rewarding experience, or a horrifying, stressful nightmare that has you scrolling through Craigslist and Career Builder employment ads as soon as you get home.

Want to know what we bitch about over drinks after work? The pet peeves and no-no’s that we talk endless shit about? Here are 10 Things You Should Never Do in a Restaurant.

SMOKE AN E-CIGARETTE.
How about just never smoking an e-cigarette. Ever.

WALK INTO A RESTAURANT AT 11:45 WHEN THE KITCHEN CLOSES AT MIDNIGHT AND ORDER A THREE-COURSE MEAL.
…unless you want shitty service and a pissed-off kitchen crew.

NO SHOW, NO CALL ON A RESERVATION.
It’s just plain rude. Restaurants plan their service around the size and time of reservations. If you make one, we’ve planned accordingly and expect you to honor your half of the deal. If you need to cancel, even if it’s last minute, give us a call.

SPLIT A CHECK THAT IS LESS THAN $30.
Really? You can’t buy your friend breakfast? You’re not going to offer to spring for a round for your pal? Let’s show a little give and take. Or bring cash.

SIT DOWN AT UNCLEARED TABLES.
Even if you want that specific table or that spot at the bar really, really badly—don’t. Sitting down at a dirty table slows things for everyone by making it harder to clean that table, shows how impatient you are, and disrespects the bussers.

SAY YOU HAVE AN ALLERGY IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A DIAGNOSED ALLERGY.
Allergies are no joke. Not killing patrons through cross-contamination is kind of a priority in most restaurants, so if you are allergic to nuts, dairy, wheat, whatever, the kitchen will bend over backwards to accommodate you. But if you are trying to cut out gluten, it doesn’t mean you have celiac disease. If you don’t like onions, it does not mean you have an allium allergy. It means you don’t like onions. Ask nicely if the offensive ingredient can be removed from your dish. If you say you have a dairy allergy because you don’t want a cup of cream in your parsnip soup, but then dig in when dessert comes, you’re gonna get the stink eye.

TIP $1 ON A FANCY $15 DRINK.
Until tipping practices change, if you are throwing down $15 for a well-made cocktail, you can afford to tip the appropriate 20%, alright? Also, buying a round for a group of friends does not excuse you from tipping for each drink.

LIE TO THE HOST.
Lying about the number of people in your party to get a bigger table or so that you can sit immediately will not win you any friends at a restaurant. We’re not talking about the occasional add-on, or the unexpected no-show—we’re talking about blatant fibbing. We know you’re doing it.

ORDER FISH DISHES ON SUNDAYS/MONDAYS.
Seafood providers, like most food purveyors, do not deliver on Sundays. This is less of an issue for upscale places that buy the right amount of fish daily and store it properly. Most places will order fish on Friday to carry them through the weekend; nevertheless, depending on business, come Monday those striped bass fillets may have been luxuriating in the walk-in for a couple of days.

THREE WORDS…

Egg. White. Omelet.

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