What do CHers consider GOOD service
As I read threw the boards(as I so love to do...a recent addict) I see so many comments on service, and often I disagree.
I went to rendezvous in Cambridge because I heard the service was great. I was pretty disappointed. Our server was pretty bad. Half glasses of wine, marrying two bottles of wine, non attentive. Just generally disappointed.
I was wondering what is good service in a CHers mind. What are you looking for?
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For me the keys are appropriate and competent with a preference for understated rather then grand. Appropriate and competent are both contextual but applies to a greasy spoon as well as a 5-star place and everything in between.
In a greasy spoon, appropriate is fast and polite (not mean but no smiles needed...although it doesn't hurt) and competent is getting the order right.
In a 5-star appropriate means smoothness, ease, pacing and a lack of weirdness or awkwardness and understanding what is being served. Competent is getting all these elements right and getting the order right.
Understated is not making a big deal out of thing but still gracious but that's personal.
I agree with all the points that ML8000 points out, as well as the not being continually pestered with the "is everything okay" questions. If a waiter keeps an eye on the table- I assure you that if something's wrong I'm ready for making eye contact to summon them over, and that should be a seamless process also. There's a delicate line between care and hovering, and a good waiter knows it.
I also do not need to know the waiter's name. It shouldn't be necessary.
Honestly, just get my order right, bring me a refill and some extra napkins. No need to check on me, just walk near my table frequently in case I have a request. Do this and you're getting 25%.
a polite and efficient host/hostess who sets my expectations appropriately as to when i will be seated, i do not blame the restaurant, server or host if i have to wait for an extended period of time. this is my own fault, i should have made reservations. i like a server who allows me to order everything at once if i have somewhere to go, or lets me linger and talk if i desire. and a server who makes suggestions for what to order, always give my condiments and silverware. thats about all i can think of.....oh and i tip 10% for bad service...and it goes up to 25 for really good. i also leave a thank you not on the bill if the service is great.