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Tom Sietsema on foolishness

law_doc89 May 17, 2014 10:45 AM


Some people just seem easy to push around. Can't say I would put up with this kind of treatment, and never have.

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  1. s
    Steve RE: law_doc89 May 17, 2014 11:35 AM

    Like almost all restaurants that start off with that policy (Jaleo, for example), I suppose it's only a matter of time, so this just affects poseurs who feel compelled to go to a restaurant while the foodie buzz is at its highest. For those folks, I have little sympathy. Toki Undergound, mentioned in the end of the article, accepts reservations now:


    3 Replies
    1. re: Steve
      knitone RE: Steve May 17, 2014 12:14 PM

      I agree. I wait for the policy to change. I see no reason to wait hours. Thanks for the Toki update

      1. re: knitone
        Steve RE: knitone May 17, 2014 01:03 PM

        having said that, I went to Rose's Luxury midweeek about 9 minutes before opening and was seated immediately. So I may be a poseur, but a strategic one.

        1. re: knitone
          Hue RE: knitone May 18, 2014 07:13 PM

          It's so crowded nobody goes there anymore...Yogi Berra

      2. w
        Worldwide Diner RE: law_doc89 May 17, 2014 05:11 PM

        Waiting in line is being pushed around? I guess you don't take your kids to amusement parks. And either you don't fly or you have a private plane.....

        2 Replies
        1. re: Worldwide Diner
          knitone RE: Worldwide Diner May 17, 2014 05:27 PM

          Good point

          1. re: Worldwide Diner
            law_doc89 RE: Worldwide Diner May 17, 2014 05:30 PM

            Frankly, General Aviation is the only way to go.

          2. w
            Worldwide Diner RE: law_doc89 May 18, 2014 06:51 AM

            "The masses include senior citizens who might not be able to stand for long or don’t go out after dark, parents who may be reluctant to shell out $20 an hour for child care for a meal that may or may not happen, and suburbanites reluctant to drive in for the chance to be turned away. (“Maybe that’s the point?” an acquaintance snarked.) I smell ageism."

            Well, in that same sentence, he also says parents with children are affected. Most parents are heterosexual, so these restaurants are anti-heterosexual too. And they don't want suburbanites. Most Chinese people live in the suburbs, so they're anti-Chinese too. Damn these no reservation restaurants. [I'm just kidding]

            5 Replies
            1. re: Worldwide Diner
              Steve RE: Worldwide Diner May 18, 2014 07:42 AM

              When I went to Rose's Luxury, I was surpised to see families were there with young kids. The 'hood has changed quite a bit, and the scene could have been straight outta suburbia.

              1. re: Steve
                monkeyrotica RE: Steve May 19, 2014 10:09 AM

                I started working off 8th Street in 1989 when the area was a hot mess. Came back in 2002 when they rebranded it "Barracks Row" and today the place is totally kid friendly. If you don't believe me, try and get a table at Matchbox or Ted's Bulletin on the weekend.

                Surprised the developers haven't tried rebranding the stretch south of the Freeway South Barracks Row or "SoBaRo." The millennials would be all over that like lime foam on an artisanal locavore craft cocktail.

                1. re: monkeyrotica
                  Steve RE: monkeyrotica May 19, 2014 10:46 AM

                  Yesterday I walked 14th St, NW above Thomas Circle to S St and also 8th St, SE. They are very different places. Much more diversity on 8th, SE include diversity in age.

                  Also, I took a look at the block south of the freeway. Real estate there is papered over. Levis' Port Cafe long gone. Though there is a big parking area under the freeway, and the crowds of people parking there could easily turn down that way if there was something to lure them. I saw lots of Nationals jersays, and it looked like a game just let out.

                2. re: Steve
                  Worldwide Diner RE: Steve May 19, 2014 10:13 AM

                  So parents with young children should bring their brats? That'll drive enough business away and force the restaurants to ban kids and take reservations?

                  1. re: Worldwide Diner
                    Steve RE: Worldwide Diner May 19, 2014 10:48 AM

                    Tons of families out on 8th St, SE. Far more than you'll see in any restaurant area of DC. That street is stroller central.

              2. h
                Hue RE: law_doc89 May 18, 2014 07:39 AM

                My Uncle Sam made me wait in line tooo long for too many meals. I don't wait in a line to eat, I will cool my heels in the bar for a few minutes but that's about it.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Hue
                  skipper RE: Hue May 18, 2014 07:42 PM

                  Absolutely true. There is no restaurant I would wait to be seated at for more than 10 minutes. Unchowhoundish, you might say, but I find waiting abhorent and if they want my cash they'll take my reservation and seat me promptly.

                2. ccbweb RE: law_doc89 May 18, 2014 12:08 PM

                  I don't see it as being pushed around because it's readily apparent what one would be in for long before showing up at the restaurant....the diner (or prospective diner) still has to decide to head to the place.

                  But what does happen for the restaurant is that people like my wife and myself will opt out entirely. We're going up to DC from Central VA next month for a long weekend for her birthday. I'm on supplemental oxygen which means I have a pretty hard capped time limit on how long I can be away from a place to refill that oxygen. Thus, we don't do restaurants where we can't make a reservation.

                  That said, if the restaurant can fill itself and flip their tables....more power to them. They don't appear to need our business.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: ccbweb
                    Steve RE: ccbweb May 18, 2014 04:21 PM

                    You're not missing that much. The food is good, like at any number of places. For those folks who can snag a counter seat overlooking the kitchen, it's a wonderful spot to have a friendly meal and see how the kitchen operates. I'm not sure I'd care for eating at one of the tables, though.

                    1. re: Steve
                      ccbweb RE: Steve May 18, 2014 07:02 PM

                      Yeah, and thanks. We're headed to Rasika and Komi....I don't feel like we're missing out at all.

                  2. monavano RE: law_doc89 May 18, 2014 03:26 PM

                    Uh, Market Lunch?

                    1. chowser RE: law_doc89 May 19, 2014 07:09 AM

                      I can understand why restaurants that can do it will. Consider the number of people who make reservations and don't show up or show up late. It's an extra hassle and cost for the restaurant. I don't think of it as being pushed around at all. I'm used to waiting for good dimsum and hesitate to go to places that can seat you right away at times that can be busy.

                      7 Replies
                      1. re: chowser
                        monavano RE: chowser May 19, 2014 07:16 AM

                        1-3 hours?

                        My sense is that the excessive waiting is more due to trendiness and "it" factor more than food. Both may be equal but the lines will eventually move to the next shiny ball.
                        I think you're in the category of dedication for the food's sake. Trendy or not.

                        1. re: monavano
                          Steve RE: monavano May 19, 2014 11:01 AM

                          The longest I've waited for food was about 45 minutes for the Floating Market Noodle Soup at the Thai Songkrat Festival in Silver Spring. It was worth it, and I did it once more a couple of years later. But that was enough for me.

                          If not waiting is a priority for you, then you'll do like I did and go when it's easy to get in.

                          Rose's Luxury has hit a nerve for which there is no easy explanation. Of course the intense attraction to it will fade over time. It's surpringly spacious inside, not like there are only 6 seats....

                          1. re: Steve
                            monavano RE: Steve May 20, 2014 11:25 AM

                            I've waited at Market Lunch a couple times-under an hour. I get that waiting is communal and people are generally in a good mood because they're excited.
                            I just don't want to do it often.

                            1. re: monavano
                              monkeyrotica RE: monavano May 20, 2014 11:43 AM

                              I tend to go to crowded places at off hours--lunch at 11 or dinner at 5. Almost never a wait. When there is, I just walk around to try and find something else and I always end up discovering something new and interesting.

                            2. re: Steve
                              chowser RE: Steve May 20, 2014 12:01 PM

                              I've never noticed but I'm sure I've waited over an hour for dim sum. I waited over an hour for ramen in NYC (had no idea it would take that long) and it was worth it. Being a tourist, I didn't know the inns and outs of it but now that I've done it, I know how to get around it. Seems like a good blog on getting around wait times like you did w/ Rose's Luxury but once it's written, the secret would be out.

                              1. re: chowser
                                ccbweb RE: chowser May 20, 2014 07:05 PM

                                You know...my wife and I wait for dim sum. But that's it. I wonder why. I'm going to have to think about that.

                                1. re: ccbweb
                                  chowser RE: ccbweb May 21, 2014 04:18 AM

                                  I think I grew up doing it and just expect to now. The funny thing is when I don't have to wait, I assume the food won't be good and that's not true here, at least not since Hong Kong Pearl doubled in size.

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