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I've Been Doing This Since Before You Were Born: A Lesson in Restaurant Etiquette For the Server and the Served

I've Been Doing This Since Before You Were Born: A Lesson in Restaurant Etiquette For the Server and the Served

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I've Been Doing This Since Before You Were Born: A Lesson in Restaurant Etiquette For the Server and the Served

Panjangnya:
81 pages
1 hour
Penerbit:
Dirilis:
Jun 20, 2012
ISBN:
9781623093310
Format:
Buku

Deskripsi

This book is a humorous look into the economic and social relationships of those who participate in this industry and the role each one plays. It gives the restaurant goer an idea of what goes on behind the kitchen door and in the minds of those who work to make your meal a dining out experience.
Penerbit:
Dirilis:
Jun 20, 2012
ISBN:
9781623093310
Format:
Buku

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I've Been Doing This Since Before You Were Born - Diane E.B. Bray

SPEAK."

Chapter One

A Little Background Information

People are very fussy about that important first meal of the day. I know this up close and personal. My very first restaurant job was serving breakfast in a pancake and steak house. It was fairly new in our neck of the woods and very popular.

My illustrious and lengthy career in the food service industry began the summer I graduated from high school. And it began with a lie. During the interview I told my future employer that I indeed had experience waiting tables. My best friend, Nancy, applied for the job at the same time. As Nancy was an experienced waitress, she assured me she could help me bluff my way through until I got the hang of things. She proved correct.

Back then no one trained a server. You only needed to know two things before embarking on the task of taking orders and serving food. One, you had to know the menu. Two, you had to know the layout of the restaurant. Now this doesn't sound like much, however, as anyone who has ever waited tables can confirm this is a bounty of information. Nancy and I were hired, given uniforms, a menu, a schedule, and sent home with new jobs as waitresses.

It was very exciting for me. I eagerly memorized the menu. I took notes on the table numbers, location of the various refrigerators and storage closets and drawers. Nancy explained that we would be taking home plenty of cash each shift and we'd get a free meal. Wow, what's not to like?

I'll tell you what's not to like. First, breakfast starts at 6:30 in the morning. That's before sunrise in some time zones. Second, the restaurant needs to be set up before the doors open. This means a waitress opening the doors at 6:30 must be there at 5:45 AM! That's before sunrise in every time zone. Third, you don't get coffee until that opening waitress, you, brews a fresh pot. Because you certainly do not want to start your day with a cup of that pot the manager or cook brewed hours ago, when they arrived. And believe me, when you live 45 minutes from work, that is a long time to wait for your first cup of morning coffee.

I made it through the trial period. I rather liked my job. I knew many of the people who were patrons and got to know all their little quirks and likes and dislikes. I got to know their personalities or in some cases lack of them. You see people at their worst moment of the day and then you see them transformed into not at their worst moment. In short, you truly get to know people when you feed them.

For example, some people hate change. They want to sit in the same seat at the same table every day. They want the same breakfast prepared by the same cook and served by the same waitress. They want to pay the same price, tip the same amount and be in and out in the same amount of time every day. Deviate from that and you have absolutely ruined their day.

People are very particular about their morning coffee. They want their coffee fresh and hot. Or they want it with just two ice cubes to take the burn out of that first sip. Some want it black and sweet. Or they want it regular, no sugar with milk, not half and half. Or they want it it straight. They want coffee right away, brought to the table when they sit. They want coffee served with the meal and not before. They want their coffee after breakfast. And you had better bring that cup of hot coffee to them when you clear their empty plate. Then there are those who cannot get enough caffeine. Pour that first cup and keep it coming. There could be a fire in the kitchen, someone choking at the next table, and a woman giving birth in the lobby and STILL you had better not allow them see the bottom of their cup.

Now, eggs are delicate. They do not taste good cold. They do not taste good warm. They do not taste good undercooked. They do not taste good overcooked. They do not taste good with bacon that is too crispy. They also do not taste good when the bacon is too fatty. They do not taste good when the toast has too much butter. They do not taste good when the toast has not enough butter. They do not taste good when the pancakes are on the same plate. They do not taste good when the pancakes have no boysenberry syrup. When do they taste good? That's a question to which I cannot remember the answer. Understand, that was nearly two score ago.

I have served eggs scrambled, sunny-side up, over easy, in omlettes, benedict and florentined. And as simple as it may sound, it is not. Scrambled eggs, for example can be loose or soft but not runny. They can be scrambled hard but not dry. Or perhaps scrambled in the skillet rather than in the bowl and delicately poured into that hot pan. They maybe scrambled with a drop of water or cream or milk or not. They can be scrambled with cheese but not omlette style. And they can be pure "poison if there is a trace of clear yolk on the plate. On the other hand you've committed a crime punishable by death if you have murdered a defenseless egg by over cooking it. And that's just scrambled eggs. Don't get me started on poached! Oh the incredible uneatable egg.

Breakfast patrons stop in for a bite on their way to work. They must be at work by a certain time or else the world comes to an end. No matter how much time they have allotted for their morning repast, it is the servers job to make certain they have enough time to eat, pay the check and get behind their desk at work on time. If you cannot perform this task, which sometimes is quite frankly a miracle, be ready for the wrath of a hungry, frustrated, dissatisfied customer. Who, by the way, will blame you for not being able to make up the twenty minutes they wasted perfecting their comb over. They will blame you because you cannot take their order, place their order, follow up on their order,

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