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Old 04-25-2015, 01:27 AM   #11
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Larry, just as long as the food was delicious and the service was impeccable, it was all good, right? Since I can surprise myself thinking it's "someone else" when I look into a mirror sometimes, seeing a different service person would confuse me. I would think it's done for efficiency as well as to convey the image that you are being given the utmost of attention.

I'm really impressed when I have felt like we were the only two people in a restaurant because of an individual server. That has been only twice in my life. Once was recently, one server at Poogan's Porch in Charleston, SC, and once eons ago at a little French bistro in Vermilon, OH, L'Auberge du Port. Absolutely sublime service and food each.
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Old 04-25-2015, 04:45 AM   #12
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IMO it is overkill.

Years ago we had an upscale Italian restaurant in town that followed a similar format. The staff hovered around the dining room like a swarm of mosquitoes, they would water you after every sip, dash to light your cigarette or remove an ashtray after each flick. It was a wonderful restaurant, with great food, but I always felt uncomfortable trying to have a quiet conversation with friends during dinner. The overly attentive service annoyed me more than it impressed me.

I suppose I should just eat at home where the food is great and the service is lousy!
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Old 04-25-2015, 06:54 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
So I was at a fancy restaurant tonight and the following happened:

1) The greeter took us to our table, Sat us, Presented us with a wine and dessert list and told us who our waitress would be.

2) A second person came and asked us what kind of water we wanted ( several brands, or just the 'House Water' ( Basically tap).

3) A third person brought Bread and Olive oil to the table.

4) The waitress returned told us the specials of the day, and gave us time to decide what we wanted to order.

5) A 4th person brought us our drinks

6) The waitress returned and took our order ( 2 appetizers and the main meal)

7) 5th person brought the appetizers

8) 6th person ultimately brought the main course.


***Periodically the waitress would return, ask if we had any questions, if everything was ok... She would also replace the drinks if the glass was empty***

***A bus boy would clean the table/ remove the dishes as needed***

So, with all this, the service was very good, and efficient. That being said, it was hard to really get to know our server/ servers as they changed with every part of the meal. Sure, the waitress seemed like she was the coordinator , making sure everything went as planned. But to me, it seemed not as personalized or intimate,as if it was 1 or 2 people you can get to know.

Is this typical today? or typical for higher end restaurants ?

I don't go out much, especially to higher end restaurants, so maybe I'm just ignorant to the way things are done these days.

Larry
It does sound a bit over the top!

Even in high end restaurants over here I've only ever had to cope with a food waiter and a wine waiter at the most and often the food waiter does the wine too as he knows what the customer is eating.

Some restaurants (and I speak advisably) do seem to have a culture of intimidation when it comes to dealing with diners in their highly superior establishments! There used to be a restauranteur in England who was famous for bullying his customers - even to the point of evicting a customer from the place for requesting salt! He's still around but has come down in the world and has recently been seen advertising something on television that in the old days wouldn't even have got into the garbage can outside his old place!
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Old 04-25-2015, 07:04 AM   #14
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I also thought it was a bit over the top. Didn't bother me at all, just something I never experienced before and was curious if it was typical or unique to this restaurant. We actually ate there a second night and it was the same thing, so at that point I knew it was ' the way they do things'. As I mentioned, the service was great. Nothing was forgotten, didn't feel rushed. Actually, the first night they didn't give us the bread with dipping olive oil. We didn't realize it until we glanced over at other tables ( who were recently seated) and each had a nice big loaf of bread on the table. I guess the Bread Guy/ Gal must have showed up late that day
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Old 04-25-2015, 07:23 AM   #15
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In a really high end establishment, service should be excellent, but not "in your face" fussy. My biggest pet peeve when eating out (usually not in high end places) is the overly friendly, wait staff who calls a customer honey (my DH) or sweetie (me).
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Old 04-25-2015, 07:36 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
We've experienced similar.

Hostess seats you.
Someone brings water
Wait person brings menus
A different person takes drink orders
Wait person takes food orders
Bus boy clears table
etc

It doesn't really bother me. We're there for good food and good service. Team service is a way to get that done.
A cynic speaks - and to put you in the frame of mind that you feel you need to give a larger tip (which the waiters and waitresses probably won't get or will only get as a con to make up their wages to the legal minimum).
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Old 04-25-2015, 07:40 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
I also thought it was a bit over the top. Didn't bother me at all, just something I never experienced before and was curious if it was typical or unique to this restaurant. We actually ate there a second night and it was the same thing, so at that point I knew it was ' the way they do things'. As I mentioned, the service was great. Nothing was forgotten, didn't feel rushed. Actually, the first night they didn't give us the bread with dipping olive oil. We didn't realize it until we glanced over at other tables ( who were recently seated) and each had a nice big loaf of bread on the table. I guess the Bread Guy/ Gal must have showed up late that day
It would be a pain in the neck if the meal was also a business meeting!
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Old 05-08-2015, 05:50 AM   #18
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It's not ideal, but I have worked in restaurants where this is the system.
I prefer assigning two staff (food & beverage) to a section of tables. I used to have a waiter who would fly off the handle if any of the other staff "touched" his tables.
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Old 05-08-2015, 07:45 AM   #19
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We only go out to restaurants when we are out of town. There none here. And a lot of times we do end up in some fancy, touristy places. And I do not like this multiple servers service. I like to know who I am leaving the tips to.


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Old 05-08-2015, 08:37 AM   #20
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Come this Tuesday, my daughter is taking me to see "In The Mood. It is a stage play with music from the big band era. The 40's. Then we will be going to Legal Seafood Restaurant. The one we are going to is one of the fancy ones that cater to tourists. But that is fine with me. It is my Mother's Day present. The good part is that the wait people can tell just by our Boston accent that we are not tourists, so we always get really good service. They know we will complain and spread the word.
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