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Small things I can't stand at chains or other......

jrvedivici Mar 21, 2014 07:36 AM

Had to meet someone for lunch yesterday he suggested a TGIF as the meeting place. It was his call so I agreed. This is how my dipping "sauce" arrived. How long would you estimate that had to be sitting for the film to form? Does the runner not check the plate before serving? Ugghhhh

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  1. westsidegal RE: jrvedivici Mar 21, 2014 12:43 PM

    for now, here are a couple of things i can't stand, i'm sure that i'll think of some more later:

    1) attempts at upselling.
    really, i can see that you sell desserts and starters.
    truly, i don't need or want a "reminder" to order coffee.
    what next? are you going to remind me to wear my jacket when it is cold out?

    2) ridiculous things written on the charge slip like little smiley faces, or a "thank you!!!" or ANYTHING else.
    the charge slip is NOT a place for you to try to bond with me after the meal is over.

    3) crouching when talking with me so that our faces are at the same level.
    this is not a preschool. i am not 2 years old. it's just so WEIRD. normal adults DON'T DO THIS WITH OTHER ADULTS. it is STRANGE.

    4) touching me
    you are NOT my friend. do NOT feel that it is ok for you to physically touch me in the normal course of taking my order.

    these kind of behaviors so turn me off that i will avoid any establishment at which they are practiced.
    i like my servers to behave with a little bit of dignity.

    fortunately for me, there seems to be a positive correlation with these sorts of server behavior and lousy food. . . . .

    13 Replies
    1. re: westsidegal
      Boston_Otter RE: westsidegal Mar 21, 2014 02:06 PM

      I cannot possibly imagine being angered by someone thanking you for visiting a restaurant.

      Nor can I imagine being angered by someone getting down low so they can hear you better in a noisy restaurant.

      Nor can I imagine being angered by someone asking me if I want dessert or coffee at the end of my meal. Matter of fact, I can't remember going to any restaurant, ever, that didn't ask me if I wanted dessert.

      1. re: Boston_Otter
        westsidegal RE: Boston_Otter Mar 21, 2014 06:48 PM

        asking if i'd like dessert is one thing,
        trying to sell me on dessert by giving me an unrequested recitation/description of all of the dessert offerings and a testimonial about how awsome/fabulous each one is, is, completely uncalled for.

        asking if i'd like anything else is one thing.
        going through the litany of exactly what "anything else" could be is another.

        it is simply an obvious attempt to upsell.

        1. re: westsidegal
          Boston_Otter RE: westsidegal Mar 23, 2014 10:48 AM

          I think that it's part of the server's job to tell you what's being offered for dessert, and I always appreciate knowing what's available -- and especially their opinions on what's worth ordering.

          If you specifically say "I don't want dessert," and they insist on running through the menu anyway, that's poor service. But I've never had that happen anywhere.

          1. re: westsidegal
            NonnieMuss RE: westsidegal Mar 25, 2014 11:01 AM

            I have to agree - "Will we be having dessert?" "No thank you, I couldn't eat another bite." "Are you sure? There's the chocolate...blah blah blah."

            Also the faux-sneaky upsell - "Have we decided on an appetizer?" No "we" haven't. We are not ordering an appetizer.

            I hate the upsell more than anything. Offer once, fine. Then leave it alone.

            1. re: NonnieMuss
              westsidegal RE: NonnieMuss Mar 25, 2014 11:14 PM

              NonnieMuss: your appetizer example is called the "assumptive close" technique: they start out "assuming" that you are going to buy an appetizer and by doing so, put you in an uncomfortable position of having to refuse.

              some consultant probably sold the chain on the idea of forcing their servers to use this disgusting technique.

            2. re: westsidegal
              MagicMarkR RE: westsidegal Mar 25, 2014 11:57 AM

              This bugs me as well. Also there are times when it is clear you have ordered what you want, period.

              For example, on rare occasions I stop at the Panda for quick take-out "Chinese" food. This is a case where everything on offer is out there like a buffet for all to see. I say what I want and anyone paying attention would realize that I am done with ordering what I want. At literally every "station" in the line I'm asked "egg rolls, pot stickers, <etc>?"; and then "drink, soda, bottled water?" NO!

              I get it that the empoyees at the establishment are required to do this, so I do not blame them. But it is a huge turn-off.

              I actually quit a waitstaff job at a regional East coast chain many years ago because the corporate parent really pressured its employees to "suggestively sell." The budding foodie in me simply could not find enough things on the menu I could recommend! (Also, this was early days of sous vide, and the chain made a lot of stuff at a central kitchen which it then delivered to restaurants. When customers asked for even the most trivial and minor modifications, we'd embarassingly have to say that it couldn't be done, and struggled with avoiding having to admit the food was boil-in-a-bag.)

              1. re: westsidegal
                Bliss149 RE: westsidegal Jul 20, 2014 12:06 PM

                We were at an Olive Garden once where they were RELENTLESSLY pushing the wine from the moment we walked in. Surprising since this is the Deep South where there are a good number of religious types even in this day and age who frown on such things. I'm not one of those but I am a grumpy person and finally I said "Look, I am a recovering ALCOHOLIC and I'd appreciate it if you would stop trying to get me to drink alcohol!" The look on that girl's face was priceless and we didn't hear another word about buying their damn wine!

                1. re: Bliss149
                  Ttrockwood RE: Bliss149 Jul 20, 2014 02:25 PM

                  Maybe they realized customers who drank were less likely to notice food quality.....!

              2. re: Boston_Otter
                jmckee RE: Boston_Otter Mar 26, 2014 09:56 AM

                I echo Boston_otter here.

                I have been in customer service professions, in one way or another, on and off throughout my life. It is my opinion that there is a substantial minority of people who enter a customer situation expecting, looking, and actually HOPING to be ticked off about something. While I enjoy much of what I read on Chowhound, my time on this site has borne out this opinion.

                A substantial number of threads on this site include over-the-top statements of anger or disgust entirely out of proportion to the matter being commented upon.

                Items 2 and 3 in this case say more about the complainer than the restaurant.

              3. re: westsidegal
                Tripeler RE: westsidegal Mar 21, 2014 06:01 PM

                ...OR, WSG, those things put me into the mood where the food tastes even worse than it really is. Good set of observations.

                1. re: westsidegal
                  Chefpaulo RE: westsidegal Mar 24, 2014 01:44 PM

                  I'll go with numbers 1 and 4. Smiley faces and getting closer to hear me in a loud setting are not bothersome.

                  Upselling, especially when done so sloppily that you know chef has over-prepped and needs to move out yesterday's fish ASAP is an annoyance. You want the duck. Eyes roll. "You must try the fish." No...I was really...

                  Also, being shoulder-embraced by an impatient, hip-swishing waiter who thinks I've taken too much of his time deciding what to order is an affront, especially when staccato tapping his pencil on his tablet and whispering "I'm waiting! I'm WAITING!!!"
                  (FYI Philly Hounds: that happened at "two chimneys.")

                  1. re: Chefpaulo
                    Veggo RE: Chefpaulo Mar 24, 2014 01:48 PM


                    1. re: Chefpaulo
                      sal_acid RE: Chefpaulo Mar 25, 2014 11:04 AM

                      I miss that place.

                  2. Sandwich_Sister RE: jrvedivici Mar 23, 2014 10:37 AM

                    Hahaha Ewww. I would have just asked for a new sauce

                    Here are a few of mine.

                    1. Asking for a sauce that was supposed to be included in the meal and not getting it. Only to have the server come back with a thimble full of it.

                    2. Asking if you've been here before and when you say yes, they still go through the first timers spiel.

                    3. I've noticed recently that wing places will not give celery and dressing unless you ask for it. Plus they charge for it separate. I just want my buffalo wings they way they were intended to be.

                    4. A charge on the bill for the higher cost of health care which they are passing on to the customer. Yes this really has happened.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Sandwich_Sister
                      mwhitmore RE: Sandwich_Sister Mar 24, 2014 09:51 AM

                      If in San Francisco, the health care surcharge is legally mandated. Whether it actually goes for employee health care or gets skimmed by management is another issue.

                      1. re: mwhitmore
                        Sandwich_Sister RE: mwhitmore Mar 24, 2014 10:45 AM

                        We just had an issue down here in Orlando Florida with a franchise. One franchise owner has decided to charge another one in the area isn't. It has created quite the confusion. and the charge is not the norm here in Florida.

                      2. re: Sandwich_Sister
                        pedalfaster RE: Sandwich_Sister Mar 24, 2014 12:36 PM

                        Health Care surcharge?
                        Are you serious???

                        What other business expenses do these owners explicitly pass on to their customers?

                        If there is a rise in the cost of TP or hand soap is that cost advertised and passed on to the consumer as well? Good grief.

                        No wonder I prefer t cook at home.

                        1. re: pedalfaster
                          Sandwich_Sister RE: pedalfaster Mar 24, 2014 12:43 PM

                          The few that do it here, it never turns out well for them. People stop going and consider it political issue that the owner is mad about.

                          It just doesn't work.

                          1. re: pedalfaster
                            FriedClamFanatic RE: pedalfaster Mar 25, 2014 11:14 AM

                            Well, several of the companies that "serve" me tack on a fuel-surcharge. And lovely Waste Management has such a hard time processing my check they charge me an 'administrative fee', since I don't pay electronically

                            1. re: FriedClamFanatic
                              CindyJ RE: FriedClamFanatic Apr 7, 2014 07:35 AM

                              Hey, FCF ... if you're talking about Allied, and if you're paying more than $72/quarterly, we should talk.

                              1. re: CindyJ
                                FriedClamFanatic RE: CindyJ Apr 7, 2014 11:54 AM

                                No.it was Waste Mnmgt......who just today took over yet another of the remaining local companies.so I suspect soon I'll be up in the stratosphere

                                1. re: FriedClamFanatic
                                  CindyJ RE: FriedClamFanatic Apr 7, 2014 12:55 PM

                                  Pretty soon there will be just one company doing trash pickup for the entire area. The reason for my comment, though, was because I recently spoke with a neighbor of mine who had been paying $164 for the exact same pick up service, from the same company, as I pay $72 for. A quick phone call and she got the $72 rate, too.

                        2. Ttrockwood RE: jrvedivici Mar 23, 2014 03:00 PM

                          That photo really just makes me wonder if that "food" is actually safe to eat..... Looks way too much like melted plastic to me.

                          Personally i can't tolerate waitstaff that lies to me. I often have questions about the menu due to dietary restrictions and have had waitstaff tell me what they think the "right" answer is, and then i find out they did not give me accurate information. Go ask someone in the kitchen!! Don't just make up shit because you *think* you know the answer!

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Ttrockwood
                            jrvedivici RE: Ttrockwood Mar 23, 2014 05:52 PM

                            Just a FYI that was from lunch on Thurs the 20th and I'm still alive and kicking! So I guess it was safe to eat, although very dissapointing.

                            1. re: Ttrockwood
                              Chefpaulo RE: Ttrockwood Mar 24, 2014 01:29 PM

                              My first visit in1976 to the new Red Lobster in NE Philly had even less appeal. I saw fresh Blue Point oysters as an app and ordered them. They arrived as little shriveled filaments more akin to wood ear mushrooms than oysters - obviously shucked and chilled on the half-shell days ago. I sent them back with my 19-year-old waitress' retort being: "Well, I don't eat them slimy things and I don't know what thems s'posed to look like."
                              I say first visit as, in 1996, my dear old Dad wanted to go to the lobster fest, and I relented. That was THE last.

                              1. re: Chefpaulo
                                VenusCafe RE: Chefpaulo 1 day ago

                                i recently was at a Red Lobster for the first time; it was for
                                lunch and I ordered the wood grilled shrimp tacos (3).
                                I was AMAZED to find it was pretty good, with a couple of really good accompaniments @$7.95

                            2. Veggo RE: jrvedivici Mar 23, 2014 06:04 PM

                              Hardly a halcyon surface. Small craft warnings should be in effect.
                              But I used to eat pudding skin.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: Veggo
                                jrvedivici RE: Veggo Mar 24, 2014 01:12 PM

                                Pudding skin is a delicacy my friend.

                                1. re: jrvedivici
                                  mucho gordo RE: jrvedivici Apr 1, 2014 01:12 PM

                                  as is the skin on any dish with sauce/gravy that's been sitting for a while

                              2. Boston_Otter RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 05:45 AM

                                That definitely looks like sauce that's been sitting under the salamander for awhile while the other tables' dishes were being finished. Not pretty! But about what I'd expect at TGIF.

                                What do I hate?
                                - Poorly managed waitstaff. There's nothing more frustrating for people waiting a half-hour to be seated than being able to see an entire section of the restaurant empty, with tables totally unused, because the server for that area is on break, called in sick, whatever.
                                - Fake "specials". Try our new $9.99 steak! (fine print: it's a 5 oz. steak with no side dishes. For $15 bucks you can get an 8oz steak with a side and a freakin' lobster tail but we hope you don't do the math.)
                                - Increasingly insane cocktail prices. Now that 'craft cocktails' are all the rage, it's become common to see drinks like manhattans for $10-14 at chains.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Boston_Otter
                                  treb RE: Boston_Otter Mar 24, 2014 07:51 AM

                                  Learned years ago, Specials are not very special.

                                2. w
                                  WNYamateur RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 11:54 AM

                                  Dressing on the side. There's nothing like a well-dressed salad, and even if you could replicate it at the table, you'd probably become a major spectacle.

                                  I'm talking about the places that ALWAYS serve dressing on the side, not those that do it on request.

                                  But to those who ask for it that way, probably on the advice of one of the giant diet Nazis: if the restaurant knows how to properly dress a salad (and not overdress it), you'd probably use less dressing ordering it that way.

                                  But so many people - in both restaurant and home kitchens - serve salads dripping in dressing. I was taught that you should be able to dress and toss a salad in a collander with nothing dripping out the bottom.

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: WNYamateur
                                    westsidegal RE: WNYamateur Mar 25, 2014 10:48 PM

                                    << if the restaurant knows how to properly dress a salad (and not overdress it), you'd probably use less dressing ordering it that way.>>

                                    the "new-normal" way i've seen people using dressing-on-the-side is to dip their fork in the dressing and then use the fork to spear undressed salad.
                                    doubt that any restaurant would use less dressing than that.

                                    1. re: westsidegal
                                      monkeyrotica RE: westsidegal Mar 26, 2014 08:42 AM

                                      I can count on one hand the number of salads I've ordered in 30 years that have been properly dressed. The default salad comes with an entire bottle of dressing because it's cheap (mostly corn syrup) and gives the illusion of "value."

                                    2. re: WNYamateur
                                      Ttrockwood RE: WNYamateur Jul 20, 2014 02:32 PM

                                      Outside of very high end fine dining i have only ever gotten very over dressed salads- i want my salad to be a healthy option! Not the same caloric value as the french fries....so, yeah, i'm one of those olive oil and vinegar in the side people.

                                    3. SaraAshley RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 12:13 PM

                                      Haha, I learned long ago not to expect much from TGI Fridays. I will say, however, that I very much actually enjoy their Jack Daniels shrimp with the dipping sauce. It used to come as just an entree in itself, but now you are forced to get it as a combo with chicken, and the chicken kinda sucks.

                                      Anyways, to answer the question, and to tie into your sauces complaint, I don't like when warm sauce is served cold, or room temp, such as marinara sauce for mozzarella sticks. I don't like when small accompaniments for my food are left off, if stated on the menu that they will be included, ie: a roll with my salad.

                                      6 Replies
                                      1. re: SaraAshley
                                        jrvedivici RE: SaraAshley Mar 24, 2014 01:18 PM

                                        Yeah that Jack Daniels dish was tolerable when they first came out with it. I haven't had it in years though......that picture above was from their pick 3 appetizer, I had fried string beans, wings, and their home made pretzel rolls. That was the cheese sauce for the pretzel rolls, not very impressed with any of it,.

                                        1. re: jrvedivici
                                          SaraAshley RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 01:22 PM

                                          I think it's the sauce that makes the Jack Daniels dish. I'd like them to sell it.

                                        2. re: SaraAshley
                                          westsidegal RE: SaraAshley Mar 25, 2014 10:49 PM

                                          SaraAshlely: you may enjoy their Jack Daniels shrimp.
                                          i say skip the shrimp and just get the unadulterated Jack Daniels. i think you'll find it an improvement. . . .

                                          1. re: westsidegal
                                            jrvedivici RE: westsidegal Mar 26, 2014 06:32 AM

                                            West, can you clarify that for me please? Just get the sauce?

                                            LMAO......never mind I think I "get you" now. Yes I agree, just go for the Jack - Ashley!

                                            1. re: jrvedivici
                                              Tripeler RE: jrvedivici Mar 26, 2014 07:17 AM

                                              Yeah, leave the gun, take the Jack.

                                              Especially if Westsidegal is going stand-up -- her comment was hilarious. It made me think of "I'll have the Jack Daniel's Shrimp, and hold the shrimp."

                                              1. re: Tripeler
                                                Servorg RE: Tripeler Mar 27, 2014 07:05 AM

                                                "Now all you have to do is hold the shrimp, bring me the Jack, give me a check for the shrimp with Jack Daniels sauce, and you haven't broken any rules.

                                                You want me to hold the shrimp, huh?

                                                I want you to hold it between your knees."

                                                With all due apologies to Carole Eastman and Bob Rafelson

                                        3. p
                                          pedalfaster RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 12:42 PM

                                          Sticky and/or greasy table tops.

                                          Why, oh why, can't chains eradicate this?

                                          My little nit-picky thing is the flatware. I get that the spoons won't be silver, but *must* they be the lowest-grade, cheapest stainless possible?

                                          Ditto for the paper napkins.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: pedalfaster
                                            On_yun RE: pedalfaster Jul 20, 2014 01:03 PM

                                            And there's my number one peeve at any restaurant, sticky tables and dirty rags used to wipe them.

                                          2. alliegator RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 04:23 PM

                                            Ew, that cheese is beyond vile!
                                            My biggest pet peeve occurs at Olive Garden. I'm outvoted several time a year :( and those nasty breadsticks are slicked down with more oil than a sunbathing Real Housewife of Beverly Hills. They just freak me out by even being on the table.

                                            1. Breadcrumbs RE: jrvedivici Mar 24, 2014 04:38 PM

                                              My guess is that nasty cheese bowl was heated in the microwave with a piece of cling film/ Saran wrap on top and that nasty pattern you see on the top is the impression the cling film left. Of course it would then have set up like that as it then sat under the salamander.

                                              I really don't like condiment bottles that are left on tables. Who knows what's been done to them and how many germs they harbour.

                                              ETA: Oh and don't get me started about servers "cleaning" your table with that horrifying community rag.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs
                                                VenusCafe RE: Breadcrumbs 1 day ago

                                                Exactly right about the Saran wrap; that was my first
                                                thought upon seeing it...and those greasy rags, OMG!

                                              2. e
                                                ebchower RE: jrvedivici Mar 25, 2014 07:23 AM

                                                When they try to commit my order to memory instead of writing it down and have to ask me again when they can't remember something.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: ebchower
                                                  Boston_Otter RE: ebchower Mar 25, 2014 07:29 AM

                                                  I can't tell you how many times I've had this situation:
                                                  Me: Don't you need to write this down?
                                                  Server: Ha ha, don't worry, I've got it!
                                                  (food arrives)
                                                  Me: Er, I actually ordered the (x), with a side of (x).
                                                  Server: Are you sure? I think I would have remembered that.

                                                  1. re: ebchower
                                                    zippypinhead RE: ebchower Mar 26, 2014 05:27 PM

                                                    In a now long gone place in Cleveland (New York Spaghetti House) all the wait staff was Eastern European. I once saw one of 'em wait on a table of twenty. Drinks, apps, salads, pasta & main course and not write a thing down until totaling up the bill.
                                                    Some of the folks even tried trading seats to mess him up but he never skipped a beat.

                                                  2. Foody4life RE: jrvedivici Mar 25, 2014 08:31 AM

                                                    Often in a diner - not fond of the server delivering an arm's length of plates where the bottom of your plate is on top of my fries and my plate is on top of someone's sandwich and their plate is on top of someone's scrambled eggs.

                                                    Please, use a tray.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: Foody4life
                                                      jrvedivici RE: Foody4life Mar 25, 2014 08:36 AM

                                                      While I completely understand where you are coming from and not trying to discount your feelings on this subject, I on the other hand find this to be a lost art form.

                                                      I myself can only do three plates at a time, in one hand/arm, anyone who can do four or more has my respect!

                                                      1. re: jrvedivici
                                                        Foody4life RE: jrvedivici Mar 25, 2014 08:39 AM

                                                        yeh, something about it skeeves me out.

                                                        Of course at any ballpark I'm allowed to do the same with a couple of dogs stacked on top of the fries - to free up the beer carrying hand!

                                                    2. NonnieMuss RE: jrvedivici Mar 25, 2014 11:03 AM

                                                      Everything seems like it's tequila-lime-chipotle-bourbon-glazed-southwestern-fajita-style.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: NonnieMuss
                                                        alliegator RE: NonnieMuss Mar 25, 2014 11:32 AM

                                                        You forgot to top that all off with a battered and fried jalapeno "caps" garnish :D

                                                      2. c
                                                        cavandre RE: jrvedivici Mar 26, 2014 05:08 AM

                                                        There's a chain that goes to the trouble of toasting the burger bun, but then wraps the whole thing in aluminum foil and to make matters worse, seals the whole thing up in a closed paper bag. By the time you find a seat and unwrap your meal, the bun has turned into a soggy mess.

                                                        7 Replies
                                                        1. re: cavandre
                                                          monkeyrotica RE: cavandre Mar 26, 2014 08:44 AM

                                                          I'm going to take a wild guess and say that's Five Guys. They also have no idea how to fry their "fresh cut fries" so they're burnt on the outside and soggy on the inside. They're then dumped into a paper cup at the bottom of a bag so you get 8lbs of soggy steamed fries. Shake Shack seems to have fallen for the "fresh cut is always better" canard, but it seems like they haven't quite licked the problem yet. Meanwhile, at the bulletproof Chinese carryout across the street, I can have perfectly crispy frozen crinkle cut fries.

                                                          1. re: monkeyrotica
                                                            ccbweb RE: monkeyrotica Mar 26, 2014 09:15 AM

                                                            Best fries I get are with the pizza from the joint down the street. Regular sort of pizza/subs place with wonderful fries.

                                                            1. re: ccbweb
                                                              fldhkybnva RE: ccbweb Mar 27, 2014 10:33 AM

                                                              Chinese takeout fries, hands down always amazing! :)

                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                monkeyrotica RE: fldhkybnva Mar 27, 2014 11:39 AM

                                                                If they've been in the fryer that's cooked the eggrolls, springrolls, and wontons, they take on an ethereal seafood-ey-ness. In food snob terms, you end up with a bold, potato forward aroma that burns the palate with hints of peanut oil, shrimp toast, fried chicken, and oyster.

                                                                1. re: monkeyrotica
                                                                  fldhkybnva RE: monkeyrotica Mar 27, 2014 01:17 PM

                                                                  I've never noticed any sort of seafood-ey-ness or my palate just sucks.

                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                    monkeyrotica RE: fldhkybnva Mar 28, 2014 02:59 AM

                                                                    They probably don't fry enough shrimp eggrolls and other seafood. That, or they change the fryer oil regularly. Stupid Health Department Codes. I hate them so much...

                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva
                                                                      coll RE: fldhkybnva Jul 20, 2014 01:13 PM

                                                                      Most restaurants that specialize in fried food usually have a dedicated fryer for seafood items. For just this reason!

                                                          2. e
                                                            ebchower RE: jrvedivici Mar 26, 2014 05:04 PM

                                                            When they automatically assume the order is take out without asking.

                                                            1. NonnieMuss RE: jrvedivici Mar 27, 2014 10:25 AM

                                                              Ok, this is a weird one, but has happened at several chains. "What can I get you to drink - we have Pepsi products, lemonade, iced tea..."

                                                              Well actually I wanted some alcohol, but I now feel like you disapprove of it somehow. I get that many people don't drink, or they want to maintain the family-friendly atmosphere, but you have a huge, well-stocked bar right where I can see it and neon beer signs everywhere. Why list every single virgin beverage you have? It doesn't bother me, I just find it weird.

                                                              14 Replies
                                                              1. re: NonnieMuss
                                                                Boston_Otter RE: NonnieMuss Mar 27, 2014 11:59 AM

                                                                It seems to me that if they were to list every possible alcoholic drink they offered, you'd be there for a good half-hour, listening. I would never take the offer of soft drinks, lemonade, or iced tea as a condemnation of alcohol. Since the first question of most people ordering soft drinks is "Do you have Coke or Pepsi?", they're letting folks know what's available.

                                                                1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                  NonnieMuss RE: Boston_Otter Mar 27, 2014 01:24 PM

                                                                  I don't think it's necessary to list any drinks at all - a simple "What can I get you to drink?" would suffice. What I find odd is the listing of every single non-alcoholic drink they serve.

                                                                  It's especially odd because you would assume that servers would prefer to serve a few cocktails at $6.00 each than a Coke for $1.50.

                                                                  1. re: NonnieMuss
                                                                    MGZ RE: NonnieMuss Apr 11, 2014 12:13 PM

                                                                    $6.00 cocktails? That'd make me feel like a kid again. I may finally be beginning to understand the appeal of these places. At least now I know why jr goes so often.

                                                                    1. re: MGZ
                                                                      jrvedivici RE: MGZ Apr 12, 2014 04:33 AM

                                                                      Stick with me kid I know all the $5. "Martini" Happy Hours as well as a $1.00 domestic can of beer!

                                                                      1. re: MGZ
                                                                        NonnieMuss RE: MGZ Apr 12, 2014 07:50 AM

                                                                        Smaller city in the South = lower cost of living!

                                                                  2. re: NonnieMuss
                                                                    Marusik RE: NonnieMuss Mar 27, 2014 01:27 PM

                                                                    Totally agree! I will still order my alcohol, but thanks for making me feel weird.

                                                                    1. re: NonnieMuss
                                                                      ccbweb RE: NonnieMuss Mar 27, 2014 06:47 PM

                                                                      And this is why I am so glad I don't work in restaurants anymore. I'd appreciate this because I can't stand most Pepsi products and it's nice to just know and be able to move on. There's just no way to please everyone all the time for people in restaurants.

                                                                      1. re: ccbweb
                                                                        Boston_Otter RE: ccbweb Mar 28, 2014 05:59 AM

                                                                        I think that if someone feels shamed or 'weird' about ordering alcohol after a server offers a selection of soft drinks, that says a lot more about them than the restaurant.

                                                                        1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                          NonnieMuss RE: Boston_Otter Mar 28, 2014 06:15 AM

                                                                          Maybe someone start an alternate thread of things they think shouldn't bother people at chain restaurants?

                                                                          1. re: Boston_Otter
                                                                            Servorg RE: Boston_Otter Mar 28, 2014 06:18 AM

                                                                            I think that this thread proves, beyond a shadow of doubt, that servers can't win with some diners no matter what they do, or don't do. ESP looks to be a job requirement in order to be a good waiter or waitress it seems.

                                                                            1. re: Servorg
                                                                              NonnieMuss RE: Servorg Mar 28, 2014 06:26 AM

                                                                              But since we're talking chains, it's more the corporate policies. I know the servers have to follow the rules with the upselling, suggestions, etc. I don't hold that against them. I've waited more than my share of tables and you sure can't please everyone. One person's smiley face is another person's tooth-grinding annoyance.

                                                                              1. re: NonnieMuss
                                                                                Servorg RE: NonnieMuss Mar 28, 2014 06:32 AM

                                                                                My wife and I go out to dinner, wherever it might be, to have time to catch up, relax and enjoy a little downtime after work. If our server gets our order right and is there if we need something without having to hunt them down, then the rest of this stuff doesn't even register with us.

                                                                                1. re: Servorg
                                                                                  NonnieMuss RE: Servorg Mar 28, 2014 07:12 AM

                                                                                  Again - great post for the "things that don't bother me thread", but this is a thread called "small things I can't stand".

                                                                                  (Please understand that I'm teasing - it's sometimes hard to read tone on a message board and I'm just posting in fun.)

                                                                        2. re: NonnieMuss
                                                                          fisher RE: NonnieMuss Apr 11, 2014 10:00 AM

                                                                          This reminded me of my waitressing days. Very often my question "What can I get you to drink?" was met with the response "We don't drink, I'll have a Pepsi" or "Nothing, thank you, I'll just have water".

                                                                        3. e
                                                                          ebchower RE: jrvedivici Apr 4, 2014 10:28 AM

                                                                          This one happened to me today, and reminded me how it always seems to happen and how annoying it is.

                                                                          Diner club sandwiches. "Please order by the number" the menu states.

                                                                          "I'd like a number one club sandwich, please."

                                                                          "Which one is that?"

                                                                          "The turkey"

                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: ebchower
                                                                            Servorg RE: ebchower Apr 4, 2014 10:36 AM

                                                                            I'm almost willing to bet that question "Which one is that?" is purely self-protection by the server because some diners get it wrong and then complain "You didn't bring me the right sandwich." Just sayin'...

                                                                            1. re: ebchower
                                                                              James Cristinian RE: ebchower Apr 11, 2014 10:31 AM

                                                                              How about this one? " A small coke please." " We only have medium and large." Oh.

                                                                              1. re: James Cristinian
                                                                                ebchower RE: James Cristinian Apr 11, 2014 08:31 PM

                                                                                I have a friend who likes to order root beer. She can't understand why places suggest a Dr. Pepper when they don't have root beer. I've seen it happen several times with her.

                                                                            2. p
                                                                              punkin712 RE: jrvedivici Apr 11, 2014 11:51 AM

                                                                              I HATE when a server asks "do you need change?" The last time this happened to me was 4 days ago. I was paying with a credit card (which was sticking out of the top of the billfold with the check) and my response was "No, but I'd like my credit card back." The server had other issues throughout the meal and seemed somewhat new, so I chalked it up to poor training.

                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                              1. re: punkin712
                                                                                Chefpaulo RE: punkin712 Apr 11, 2014 02:15 PM

                                                                                About 25 years ago, I frequently lunched at a small rural hotel 35 miles outside of Philadelphia. One day, my tab came to $7.25. I gave waitress (known for her asking everyone if they needed change) a $20. From across the almost full dining room of regulars she yells, "Do you need change?"
                                                                                "What was the tab and what did I give you?" I queried.
                                                                                "Seven twenty five and you gave me a twenty."
                                                                                "You're good but not that good."
                                                                                Unanimous raucous laughter erupted as she crawled off to the register. Maybe she learned something that day.

                                                                                1. re: Chefpaulo
                                                                                  mucho gordo RE: Chefpaulo Apr 11, 2014 03:05 PM

                                                                                  nice comeback.

                                                                                  1. re: Chefpaulo
                                                                                    monavano RE: Chefpaulo Jul 20, 2014 01:10 PM

                                                                                    That took cajones to even ask if you wanted change- I think my tip would have gone down.

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