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Oct 24, 2012 10:27 PM

Does it bother you when servers put your fork back on your table after appetizer/salad?

Not talking about fine dining obviously since this doesn't happen there. I'm talking about at other restaurants: low to mid-range.

I've notice this happening a lot: server removes my fork from my plate and without asking me places it on my table. Or the server tells me to take the fork as she removes the plate.

Is it laziness? Some insignificant way to save money?

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  1. doesn't bother me in the least - I use the same fork for my salad and main dish at home...

    1. Bothers the hell out of me.

      If I wanted to eat like I eat at home, I'd eat at home.

      11 Replies
      1. re: Sneakeater

        Agree. It's disgusting.

        If they attempt that, I just tell them to bring us clean ones.

        What next, they'll take a sip out of my water glass and then refill it.

        1. re: mitchleeny

          That's a false parallel, since that's your own saliva on the fork, not theirs.

          A better example would be if they made you keep the same glass for the red and then white wines.

          1. re: DagingKuda

            but even that has it's own argument -- glasses for red wine and glasses for white wine have different design characteristics built around maximizing the aroma of the wine....not to mention the dregs left in the glass.

            I'd send glasses to the kitchen in a heartbeat...but a drop of salad dressing on the fork isn't going to adulterate the flavor of the next course for more than a single bite, if that much.

            1. re: sunshine842

              "[A] drop of salad dressing on the fork isn't going to adulterate the flavor of the next course for more than a single bite, if that much."

              Yeah, it would be awful to lick or wipe that drop off, you know?

              1. re: sunshine842

                Oh, I agree with everything you say. Just pointing out the fallacy of the original analogy.

                1. re: sunshine842

                  I do not mind using the same utensil except if it is smeared with some sticky sauce.
                  About wine glasses, I grew up in Italy during the ww2, where we made our own wine and sold it in our osteria, we made white and red and we did not have different type of glasses, we had what you call water glasses, about 6 ounce with thick heavy glass. Now I do not enjoy drinking from fancy fluted glasses, I want a heavy glass that I can hold without fear of breaking it.
                  I took a tour of the Mondavi winery, and asked about wine glasses,
                  and Miss Mondavi ( forgot her name ) said that if you like the wine you could use a mason jar. Just enjoy it.

                  1. re: sgbigfive

                    "[I]f you like the wine you could use a mason jar. Just enjoy it."

                    Totally agree. I have no problem drinking out of many different glasses - I don't need "stems" unless my "juice jar" is going to offend everyone else.

                    1. re: sgbigfive

                      my most memorable wine glasses were made from water bottles -- we hacked the tops off of two water bottles, used my nail file to smooth the edge off, and used those to hold our wine during a picnic.

                      cheap, lightweight, durable enough to last the rest of the vacation (!!!) -- I've had worse! (we couldn't even find any plastic cups, so we had to figure something out or glug it from the bottle like a wino!)

                      Nowadays we use some very decent Lexan ones that screw together...but I'm still drinking wine out of a plastic glass.

                2. re: mitchleeny

                  Many many years ago in a dive diner I pointed out to the server that there was I bit of "food" stuck to my unused fork that the dishwasher apparently did not get. She simply scraped it off with her fingernail and placed it back on the table in front of me. Since then, no, it doesn't bother me that much when the only food stuck to the fork came from me.

                  1. re: mitchleeny


                    Rats and roaches are disgusting. Using the same fork twice? No. Now my preference would be a fresh fork but I can easily deal with reusing the one i used to eat my starter.

                3. At the low end of low-mid range, not at all. At the mid end of the range, it would annoy me. I probably wouldn't notice or care if I hadn't worked in the past at a mid-high-range restaurant where it was hammered into us to always replace silverware (hell to pay if you didn't and were caught). The only aspect that's annoying about it is that it strikes me as laziness, and I don't like feeling like I need to frantically snatch the fork off the edge of my plate mid-air as it's being cleared or else I'll have to flag a server down for a new one--should just be automatic.

                  1. No, it doesn't bother me. Yes, I think it's an insignificant way to save money.

                    If it ever happened in a fancy place, yeah, it would take me aback, but not in the types of places where I usually eat. I'm more likely to keep my chopsticks for all the dishes and have a clean new plate brought every so often.

                    1. Not on the low to mid end but have had fine dining where they have taken the bleu cheese dressing crusted laden knife and set it on the tablecloth...I've confronted them and asked what the hell was that about?