Monday, February 26, 2007

Another thought.....Good service is great but if that was my main concern then I would go to a masseuse instead of a restaurant. I bet the food would leave much to be desired though.....
I feel that I might have misrepresented myself based on my wonderful partner Kristen's response. I want to stress that the experience as a whole is very important and that includes the service. Thats why I said that service is almost as important as food. However, I am not a monarch, my main purpose for going to a restaurant in not to be served by an underling, I go to eat food. That is why I have to conclude that food is more important, if only slightly.

Service, definitely!

I'm noticing that Brooks and I don't use the same criteria for judging a restaurant experience, which should make this blog interesting. In his scenarios he seems to make a final judgment of the restaurant based on the food and how much lighter his wallet is.
If forced to judgment I definitely have to choose service because I focus on my entire experience. Yes, I realize bad food (or any food) is an element of that experience, but there's so much more to it. When I go out to dine, I want to feel happy when I'm done. Sounds simple, but there's a lot that goes into creating a 'happy' or fulfilling dining experience. On top of that, each person's 'happy' is subjective, which explains the difference in opinion between Brooks and I. A great front-of-the-house team can do so much more for my dining experience than the food can, no matter how good it is. If the food I'm served is horrible, but the service is friendly, informative, professional, and not pushy I will be much happier at the end of my meal than if I had wonderful food and a grouchy server. Grouchiness is contagious, and I want none of that when I go out. The industry is called the hospitality industry for a reason.
*Disclaimer: neither option (good food/bad service or bad food/good service) comes close to incredible food and an amazing staff, of course.

Food or Service?

My partner in gastronomical adventures, Kristen, feels that service is more important than food when eating out. I don't want to trivialize the importance of good, prompt, friendly service, but it isn't the most important thing! She actually claims that given a choice between good food and good service she would choose good service. What is this weblog about? It is about food! If we were more passionate about service then I think a weblog about service would be more appropriate. Scenario #1: We go to a restaurant that has incredible food but terrible service. There is a good chance that I will never go back due to the bad service, but at least I didn't waste my hard earned money on inedible food. It's also cheaper that way because I have no problem not leaving any tip if the service is really bad (Only if the service is overtly rude, not just because the restaurant is swamped). Scenario #2: The food is bad but the service is excellent. Well it is always nice to interact with friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable people (thats why I live in Davis.....), but I don't need to pay for that. If I'm dropping $100-200 on a meal it better be good! I don't pay that kind of money for a smile and a promptly served plate of gruel. Being grad student living off of grants from the government (the part of the government that actually cares about human life....), I'm not exactly a high roller, I already eat gruel a few times a week and don't want to pay for it at a restaurant. Bottom line, service is very important, I would even say almost as important, but I can't imagine saying that it is more important than the food itself. I have a feeling Kristen might have something to say about this.