Thursday, July 16, 2009

A Quicky!

Yesterday I had dinner with one of my closest friends in New York and I remembered something.

Many of my friends will ask the waiter what his or her favorite dish is.

Do you do this?
And if so, is it because you sense that you and the waiter are sort of soul mates and have similar taste? Or are you planning on taking the waiter out for a fancy meal and want to make sure that his favorite meal is on the menu?

Or am I the only one who doesn't give a shit what the waiter likes because I am a sociopath?
(Oh, and if I were the waiter? I'd totally recommend tripe every single time. Even if we didn't serve it.)

Because this post is so quick and unsatisfying, I'm linking you to a One Year Ago Today post. From a year ago. Today.


Blogger Keyona said...

I've asked once but then decided their choice sucked so I never did again.

July 16, 2009 at 10:19 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

I ask for their opinion but only if they are attractive to me or look super intelligent. The ones who look bored or mentally deficient in some way I do not ask, I mean, clearly.

So if they are hot / smart, I ask because I assume they've tried most of the things and know what is consistently really yummy. Personally, I've never been disappointed with a hot / smart waiter recommendation.

My question is, what do the sequence of letters and numbers on the subway sign in your header really mean. I know it's a secret code, but I'm ready for the big reveal.

July 16, 2009 at 10:27 AM  
Blogger Rachel said...

A million years ago when I was a waitress I used to answer this question when asked, I answered honestly, and if people asked what I thought about their order... I'd tell them ;-)
I rarely ask a waiter what they think but, occasionally I do and it usually works in my favor ;-) But, you know us Southerners ;-)

July 16, 2009 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Andrea (ace1028) said...

Ha ha ha. LOVE it. I've never asked. Great thoughts about the soul mate aspect. I love when they offer it up. I place my order, they tell me it's their favorite. OK, good ... Go get me some bread! (I'm really not that harsh, I promise! And we're good tippers!)

July 16, 2009 at 10:33 AM  
Blogger HaB said...

Having waited tables for almost 10 years, that had to be THE one question that people could ask me that would crawl under my skin and create a welt of irritation that a bottle of Benadryl could not make stop itching.

One time a lady looked at me horrified when I suggest our Prime Rib because she was a Vegan. How in hell was I suppose to know this? What if the person is allergic to shell fish or can't eat pork because of religious reasons. I don't know what a person can and can't eat, and I don't want to spend 15 minutes getting to know them so I can make a recommendation. I don't want to feel like an ass each time I suggest something only to hear "I don't like chicken" or "I don't like anyone's Red Sauce other than my Nana's". And, I certainly don't want what I suggested really wasn't enjoyed, so the person wished they hadn't asked and in retaliation the person ends up leaving me a shitty tip.

And finally, The likelihood is that because I work there and I "know" what goes on in the kitchen, I see the food so often, go home smelling like it, and have difficulty getting the stench of it out of my hair, I HATE everything on the menu.

July 16, 2009 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger *Akilah Sakai* said...

Oh, I just LOVE quickies. I can get back to reading blogs in no time!

I've only asked a few times when I couldn't decide between 2 meals and I wanted to know which they'd pick.

July 16, 2009 at 11:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, no I don't.

They aren't going to eat it. And they'll probably suggest something expensive. That's what I'd do. Upsell, baby!

July 16, 2009 at 11:52 AM  
Blogger Faithful said...

I used to love quickies, now I like to take it slow..must be my age. I have been a lurker for some time now..but I just had to finally say.. you start my day with a smile.. whether it's a quickie or not!!

ps: I always go into a trance mode with a big smile on my face when ordering-afraid of spit in my food.. I guess?

July 16, 2009 at 12:16 PM  
Anonymous Coco said...

I never ask. If I did and they told me something that I thought sucked then they would NOT get a tip. If I have never eaten there before I may stick with something safe like a salad.

I really hate ordering and not liking my food.

July 16, 2009 at 12:52 PM  
Anonymous Crystal said...

I do not care what the waiter likes, because for 1 everyone has different tastes. 2, he's probably obligated to say that EVERYTHING TASTES GREAT.

July 16, 2009 at 12:52 PM  
Anonymous Tami said...

I almost always ask the waiter when their favorite dish is. Mainly because it is VERY rare that I order the same thing twice from a restaurant (including McDonalds) - I just like to try new things. So if I have been to a restaurant more than a few times I will always ask and almost always go with their suggestions. Now I am feeling kinda bad after reading the comments above, I never do it to annoy the waiter/waitress - I honestly value their opinion. I figure they work there every day - they have probably had multiple things on the menu.

July 16, 2009 at 1:31 PM  
Anonymous Sandy said...

I've never asked! I am intrigued when I order and the waiter says, "Good choice." Do they ever steer anyone away from a particular dish?

July 16, 2009 at 1:41 PM  
Anonymous peajaye said...

whenever i go out to eat, i ALWAYS ask the person behind the taco bell counter what their favorite dish is. usually they say something that sounds like, "morir, americano, mueren." and i always respond with something like, "gosh, i don't see that on the menu." then they usually give me a look we call "mad-dogging" here in california. has anyone tried this "morir, americano" dish? i'm guessing it has american cheese in it or something. sounds yummy!

July 16, 2009 at 1:49 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Sometimes I ask but more so to gauge their integrity. And, I could live well without that exchange.
However, I'm still on the fence as to whether I appreciate waiter performance-art antics or just want to be left alone.
Overall, I choose humanity, I suppose.

July 16, 2009 at 2:08 PM  
Blogger Magpie said...

I don't ask, because I figure they're going to suggest whatever the kitchen is really trying to get rid of, like last week's pork chops or something.

July 16, 2009 at 2:14 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

I don't ask. Because I have this weird OCD thing that makes me order the same thing over and over. I have my favorite at each restaurant and that is what I eat and that is why I'm fat, because my server never says to me, have you thought about the fish tonight? Oh no, they are way too busy texting five billion people to recommend something for a fat person.

July 16, 2009 at 2:28 PM  
Blogger Maelstrom said...

So is your recommending that we read your 1 year old post anything like you recommending tripe?

July 16, 2009 at 2:40 PM  
Blogger for a different kind of girl said...

I've never asked what the wait staff's favorite menu item is, but often they will tell me, "Oh, that's my favorite! It's delicious! You'll love it!" when I order something and then I feel a bit pressured to love it as they clearly do, and if I don't I lie when they come up and ask me if I do. As I'm taking a bit of it, naturally.

July 16, 2009 at 3:18 PM  
Blogger Becky Green said...

If I'm in the mood to know, I ask them after I order--like, "I'll have the chicken, do you like it?" Because most of the time they suggest something I don't want anyways if I ask their opinion first. Like, Waiter: "oh, the ham is the best." becky: "oh, thanks, I'll have the steak." Sometimes the waiter's opinion about a certain thing at that particular restaurant is helpful. If I ask if they liked the chicken there, and they say no, I can ask why. And if they say something like that the sauce is a horrible consistency, then I may reconsider. But mostly, they usually say it tastes great, and that usually makes me feel like I've joined some elite club of fancy-chicken-eaters, and I enjooy my dinner even more.

so that's it, I guess.

July 16, 2009 at 3:53 PM  
Blogger OHmommy said...

Ha. That is my mom. She always asks them and then looks the waiter up and down to determine their appearance. We always laugh at her.

July 16, 2009 at 4:54 PM  
Blogger Issas Crazy World said...

No, but my husband will. And then he wonders why he isn't thrilled with *his* choice. Doofus.

July 16, 2009 at 6:01 PM  
Blogger Elenka said...

I don't ask, because I doubt if the wait person had sampled everything on the menu...or maybe they have...I don't know. Plus it's none of my business what they like, plus I don't care. I KNOW I hate lamb, but everything else, if it's food, it generally like.
It also depends on if I'm on my everyotherday diet or not.
I have noticed, however, that of the people I'm with, the only ones that have asked that question are the ones that have lots of money, at least more than I have. I don't know what's up with that.

July 16, 2009 at 6:09 PM  
Blogger mo.stoneskin said...

"Many of my friends will ask the waiter what his or her favorite dish is."

Friends? You call these freaks your friends? So I'm perusing the blog roll, picking out choicy (if I add an 'e' it doesn't look right dammit and I can't be bothered to google it) titles and I read about this here 'quickie' and I think fugget the last thing I need is some quickie post, where's the real deal? and then I have another beer and as I'm strolling back down the blog roll I think hey, I'm pretty tired, a quickie would suit me fine and I read about these people. These friends.

For me the waiter is an annoyance. An irritation.

Forget that. What I really mean is I like it when they blend in, when they don't step or move out of place, when they don't fumble with the cutlery when you're in the middle of a deep and meaningful. So the last thing I ever do is ask them what they like.

July 16, 2009 at 7:01 PM  
Blogger angie said...

I NEVER ask. Ever. Who cares what they like? :)

July 16, 2009 at 7:32 PM  
Blogger p said...

I ask if I can't make up my mind and every thing sounds good and I can afford it. I hate it when they personally recommend something and all I came in for was a cheap salad. Please, just shut up, take my order, and leave me with my lunch date.

However, I never ask at an ice cream parlor. One time a friend asked for a recommendation. Stupid Ice Cream Girl suggested some blue flavor. It ended up coloring my friends mouth, teeth, tongue.... AND the flavor wasn't that great either. But then again, my friend should have realized that something radioactive blue would have done that.

July 16, 2009 at 7:52 PM  
Blogger CaraBee said...

I waited tables for years and whenever people asked me I told them my honest opinion, because I had tried everything on the menu. It didn't bother me. My job was to help give them a satisfying meal, telling them my favorite thing on the menu was the least of the hassles a customer might cause. I never volunteered the info, though.

July 16, 2009 at 8:24 PM  
Blogger Sally said...

When I've narrowed it down a bit and I still can't decide, I ask which is better. But I make sure that I would really be ok with any of my options first, because it would be SO RUDE to ask their opinion then ignore it. And I only do this when the waiter seems friendly and like the kind of person who actually eats. So, not skinny.

July 16, 2009 at 8:56 PM  
Blogger Anna Lefler said...

I've never understood the "asking the waiter" thing. This is someone wearing tux pants, black Nikes and their dad's tie, for God's sakes.

(Also, maybe I don't ask because I know if I were a waiter, I would totally lie. About everything.)



July 16, 2009 at 9:37 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

I only ask the waiter what he recommends when the waiter is my husband. Because he is a caterer. And he has to worry about his safety if the outcome is bad.

July 16, 2009 at 9:55 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

And how do you know what tripe is? I thought that was a southern anti-jew food option.

July 16, 2009 at 9:56 PM  
Blogger Rachel said...

If I'm undecided between two dishes, then I'll ask the waiter's opinion. Or I'll ask him which is the bigger portion. Since I'm a fucking pig.

July 17, 2009 at 10:01 AM  
Blogger amber said...

Oh god, I'm super what the server likes, I'll probably hate :P

July 18, 2009 at 12:20 AM  
Blogger Buffyfan said...

OMG - I have a friend who consistently does this and it makes me crazy. Whether its a diner or a 5 star restaurant. I have never asked a waiter to choose between 2 dishes. I dont care.

July 21, 2009 at 7:38 AM  
Blogger Kash said...

I am that girl - I ALWAYS ask. It's because I was a waitress for 6 years and I KNEW what was good and what was just mediocre. So if the waiter looks trustworthy, I ask him - and sometimes they are brutally honest and then its brilliant.

July 22, 2009 at 8:55 AM  

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