I took a blog break this weekend to celebrate my birthday. No, I’m not going to discuss which birthday this one was, but needless to say I’m still younger than both the Bunneh and Julie. 🙂 Strangely that will always be the case.
For this lovely weekend we spent a lot of time making food and I was treated to a dinner out from both my boys and my husband, two different dinners. So today I am waxing thoughtful about the two experiences. We went to TGIFridays on Saturday and The Market Street Grill last night. Now, these are two very different kinds of establishments with a very different kind of menu at each, but it’s not the food that I’m pondering. The foods were exactly what I expected of the respective restaurants. It was the service which made all the difference.
In one case we were seen to…adequately. No one died and the food arrived eventually and everyone got pretty much what they ordered, but it really seemed like our waitress could care less whether we were there or not. She didn’t even comment on the pile of presents and obvious fact that we were celebrating until we were on our way out the door. We had to specifically ask for things like a dessert menu (we didn’t order any) and we never got drinks beyond the water we started with. She had no suggestions for what was good on the menu and wasn’t sure what was in some of the dishes or how many people the appetizers would serve without going back to the kitchen to ask.
Contrast this with waitress two. She was pleasant and smiling from the moment we arrived. She immediately asked if we were celebrating something special and acknowledged our celebration. She knew the menu inside and out and had obvious favorites. The way she described the stuffed shrimp made a sale on the spot. She made one mistake with a side, which she fixed graciously and was apologetic about. We always had full water glasses and she gave us an opportunity to order more drinks later in the evening, so I ended up with a lovely Diet Coke with a huge old wedge of fresh lime – I LOVE IT THAT WAY – Ahem. When we ordered dessert she laughed and told us the frozen key lime pie was fantastic, but prepare to pucker. We’d had it before, so knew she was right, but the comment convinced people near us to look at the dessert menu.
Both bills came to about the same amount, but one waitress got a much better tip because she did the little things which made our meal memorable and special and made her stand out. I’m left wondering how much of the two behaviors are a symptom of the establishments in question and how much personal choice?
Points to ponder.