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Jul 2, 2010 07:52 AM

servers commenting on how much we ate - rude?

Here's another "I'm not sure if I'm too sensitive or not" post!
My husband and I can be big eaters. Sometimes in restaurants we even (*gasp*) clean our plates, or nearly so. Now, I know restaurant portions are often large, and eating the portion we're served means we've eaten a lot. But it really bothers me when the server comes to take our plates away, offer dessert, ask if we're ready for the check, etc., and comments on the empty plate.
"Wow, you guys did great!" "Save any room for dessert - I guess not!" etc.
Of course, we DID eat a lot. But, on the other hand, that's the portion they gave us. It doesn't seem to me as though it should be remarkable to eat one's food. If that's the portion they give you, that's what they consider the appropriate size of a meal.
Maybe it's just "gosh, I'm a glutton" embarrassment, but ... when this happens, it always causes us a moment of self-conscious discomfort.
Do you guys get these comments? Do they affect you? Maybe we're just sensitive about eating like pigs - but still, I don't feel that the people who give you the food should make you feel bad about eating it!

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  1. Of course it's rude. I think there was another thread here on just how rude it is.

    The rudeness should be reflected in their tip.

    Of course, if it's a dear old moll who is on her feet 14 hours a day in your local diner and calls you 'hon', then she's allowed.

    Oh, and consider yourself fortunate that you were given a large portion, and didn't eat in a 'small plates' joint.

    2 Replies
    1. re: anonymouse1935

      The dear old "hon"-caller gets a pass on most every conversational quirk, as far as I'm concerned!

      Well, you know, if I wanted a small plate, I'd have ordered that, and not expected the server to comment "Boy, you didn't eat very much!" :)

    2. I vote too sensitive. I've had servers say stuff like that to me and I say "yeah, it was good" and leave it at that. People care about what you do a lot less than you think, I've found. ;)

      1 Reply
      1. re: MandalayVA

        I second this, and being in Europe for years now I found it weird when the server/owner thinks I didn't like the food because I didn't clean my plate and I spend 5 mins reassuring them that it was great and I just got too full to eat it all! Especially after sharing an app and having a side salad with the main. It seems that its the fact that you feel guilty that is making you uncomfortable not the server's "rudeness", she's just making friendly small talk. A clean plate is a compliment to the food, so don't feel guilty! I cringe when I think about going back to the states and having to deal with all of the weight and what you eat judgement. Eat and be happy, all with moderation of course ;)

      2. I think it's more likely that the servers just aren't USED to seeing people clean their plates. Whenever I go out to eat, the only person at the table who finishes his plate (and some of ours) is my brother in law who is a logger and is unsatiable! When you serve people all day and are used to taking away half-eaten meals, a clean plate is different.

        Don't take offense, unless the server is being snide, and that shouldn't be hard to notice. :)

        1. jfood thinks the word rude gets tossed around way too often. This strikes me as more untrained and clueless. Say thank you and go back to enjoying the company

          4 Replies
            1. re: jfood

              I'm with you, Jfood. People are too sensitive. The server is just trying to be friendly. I've got other things to worry about--like what's for dessert?

              1. re: jfood

                When I leave a clean plate I often comment to the server that I didn't really care for the dish. It's a joke, a friendly joke.

                1. re: phantomdoc

                  Server: How was everything?
                  I had a boyfriend who would say "I have one's all gone". LOL

              2. i have always treated this as "light banter" and always respond back in the same vein. It's never bothered me.