When dining out, we often encounter different types of customers. Some are easy-going, while others have a list of preferences that could rival a shopping list.
A husband decided to address his wife’s most-of-the-time ridiculous dining habits to ensure a pleasant dining experience for everyone involved.
A Customer with Many Requests
A couple in their 30s enjoys dining out occasionally. However, the wife has a habit of making very detailed and sometimes unnecessary requests during their restaurant visits.
The husband says that his wife,
“always complains, sends food back if it’s not absolutely perfect, and makes needless requests/substitutions (she doesn’t have allergies or sensitivities).”
Even though the husband clarified that his wife is “a very nice, caring and generous person. She does always say please and thank you even for her most absurd requests” he knows that her demands can sometimes stretch the patience of the restaurant staff.
Compensating with Tips
To compensate for the inconvenience caused to the restaurant staff, the husband came up with a unique solution. He started leaving itemized tips, adding extra amounts for each specific demand made by his wife.
This served as a way to apologize to the staff.
The wife remained unaware of this practice for two or three months until one day, she noticed her husband spending a considerable amount of time calculating the tip.
When she learned about the itemized tips, it led to a disagreement, with the wife feeling embarrassed and the husband explaining his perspective.
Live and Learn
Despite the initial disagreement, the couple managed to have a heartfelt discussion about the issue. Upon sharing the story online, and seeking opinions from others, the wife acknowledged the feedback from the online community and expressed her willingness to be more mindful during their dining experiences in the future.
When to Send Back Food
It is appropriate to send back food or drinks in several situations, including:
- When the dish is undercooked, overcooked, or overly spiced.
- If an item you asked to be omitted is present in the dish or something is missing from it.
- When your food is served cold, or your plate or glass is dirty.
However, it is not appropriate to send back food if:
- You have already consumed most of it.
- You don’t have a specific reason or lie about an issue with the food.
- You ordered the wrong item by mistake.
Communicating Issues Gracefully
When you find yourself in a situation where you need to send back food or drinks, it is essential to communicate the issues gracefully. Here are some tips:
- Always say “Thank you.”
- Advocate for yourself but be kind.
- Avoid insulting the chef or kitchen staff.
- Treat others how you want to be treated.
Remember, the goal is to maintain a pleasant and non-confrontational demeanor throughout the process.
To avoid finding yourself in awkward situations, consider the following preventive measures:
- Clearly state any food allergies you have.
- Read the menu carefully to make the right choices.
- Ensure to confirm any modifications to your order with the waiter before placing it.
Dining out is a blend of experiences, emotions, and lessons. Through our journey with this couple and expert insights, we’ve learned the significance of understanding, communication, and the right etiquette.
When going out to get the next meal, hopefully, these lessons ensure that every dining experience is memorable for all the right reasons.
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Martha A. Lavallie
Martha is a journalist with close to a decade of experience in uncovering and reporting on the most compelling stories of our time. Passionate about staying ahead of the curve, she specializes in shedding light on trending topics and captivating global narratives. Her insightful articles have garnered acclaim, making her a trusted voice in today's dynamic media landscape.