Wow, what a difference there is from one waiter to another! Today we stopped at one of our favorite restaurants and were surprised at how crowded it was. Usually we arrive at this particular location at “off” hours, so it’s never been as busy as it was today right at the noon hour.
We agreed that we’d try to keep things simple and not make any unusual (for us) requests on our orders. I chose the grilled chicken with mixed vegetables, remembering to request “no black pepper on anything, please.” The waiter duly recorded my order AND my request. Not every waiter bothers, by the way, to record the “no pepper” request.
Soon he was back to tell me that they prepare a huge batch of mixed vegetables in advance of the lunch rush, so they were all seasoned with pepper. We were sitting at a booth with a low wall on the side where the table was attached, and he could have merely leaned over the wall to talk to us. Instead, he came all the way around to our back-corner table to tell me this. So I changed my veggie order to broccoli, which is not pre-seasoned.
Not much later, Phil was back to tell me the kitchen couldn’t guarantee my grilled chicken would be pepper-free, since everything on the grill is peppered. So I changed my order to shrimp, which was the same price and the item I’d almost ordered in the first place.
Meanwhile, Phil, our waiter, was scurrying to serve several other tables around us. Despite having to change the order twice, in the middle of a very busy lunch rush, our food arrived promptly and was excellent.
Phil could have saved himself some steps if he’d known in advance what the various dishes included and how they were prepared, but since he didn’t, I give him credit for expending the energy to make sure I was satisfied.
Thank you, Phil!