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#1
Old 02-17-2012, 04:39 PM
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Is Anyone Else Grossed Out by Golden Corral's Chocolate Waterfall?

I've never been to a Golden Corral because they don't have them around in my neighborhood. But they still advertise here. A lot. And they are really pushing this chocolate waterfall thing.

The chocolate waterfall is something that evolved out of wedding receptions. It's a continuous running fountain of liquid chocolate that people are supposed to dip treats into, strawberries, cookies, marshmallows, whatever.

Now, this sort of thing at a wedding buffet doesn't ping my ick meter. After all, there's a limited number of guests, very few if any children, and the fountain's only going to be running for a limited time.

But somehow, the thought of the crowd at a Golden Corral poking for hours at this chocolate goo that gets changed god only knows how often, maybe double dipping treats? And the thought of the unsupervised children that these places tend to swarm with, lathering their fingers with the stuff and licking it off only to go for a second or third swipe really makes me want to hurl.

Did Golden Corral really think this thing would make them more upscale or something? It makes me not want to set foot in the place.
#2
Old 02-17-2012, 04:42 PM
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YES!!!

There was just a commercial on for it, and all I could think of was some unsupervised child sticking their grubby finger in the stream. You and me both, apparently.

Totally grosses me out.

Last edited by IvoryTowerDenizen; 02-17-2012 at 04:42 PM.
#3
Old 02-17-2012, 04:44 PM
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I just keep thinking "what if somebody sneezed?"
#4
Old 02-17-2012, 04:44 PM
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Yes I'm grossed out by it for two reasons. The first is the unsupervised child doing Og knows what with the waterfall. The second is that I seriously do not think a buffet needs another way for people to make themselves fatter.
#5
Old 02-17-2012, 04:46 PM
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You remind me of when we went out with my brother and sister in law and their kids. We were at a kid-friendly restaurant, and they brought over mozzeralla sticks and the marinara sauce. Great!...except before I could get any the kids were dipping their sticks in the sauce, eating it, and dipping again. And again. And then wiping their noses. And whatever else. Parents didn't even notice.

I guess when you're a parent you get used to it but I thought this was appallingly rude. Knowing what little germ factories kids are, now no one else can use the sauce.

Same thing with the chocolate fountain, yuck.
#6
Old 02-17-2012, 04:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Anaamika View Post

I guess when you're a parent you get used to it but I thought this was appallingly rude. Knowing what little germ factories kids are, now no one else can use the sauce.

Same thing with the chocolate fountain, yuck.
Not all parents "get used to
It". Some do teach even their little kids good manners.

Last edited by IvoryTowerDenizen; 02-17-2012 at 04:48 PM.
#7
Old 02-17-2012, 04:49 PM
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I'd assume it's supervised, and that you're not dipping-and-eating but dipping-and-putting-on-a-plate.

I've been to Golden Corral once, pre-waterfall. They had plenty of staff around to eye you suspiciously. It was one of the saddest food experiences of my life. The food was all only slightly better than "glop."

The place seemed to be teeming with folks very accustomed to wandering in, piling a bunch of brown and grey food slurry on their plates, and just horking it down as their children squirm and caterwaul about them.

It's like a glimpse into a self-inflicted emotional black hole. Golden Corral is where taste and hope go to die and rot in the sun. The hygiene of the chocolate fountain is the least of their worries.

Last edited by typoink; 02-17-2012 at 04:54 PM.
#8
Old 02-17-2012, 04:49 PM
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I hate that commercial! Actually, no commercial from Golden Corral has ever made me want to eat there. It looks like a bottom of the barrel, dirt cheap buffet, and I have no interest in paying money to eat food that's been sitting under heat lamps for hours. Yuck.
#9
Old 02-17-2012, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IvoryTowerDenizen View Post
Not all parents "get used to
It". Some do teach even their little kids good manners.
Very much agreed! I should have said "some" parents. Let's just say good manners, or an inside voice, are not exactly familiarities to this family. Seriously, every conversation has to be HELD LIKE THIS. Me and my SO are very quiet people; it drives us batty.

Last edited by Anaamika; 02-17-2012 at 04:52 PM.
#10
Old 02-17-2012, 04:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Anaamika View Post
Very much agreed! I should have said "some" parents. Let's just say good manners, or an inside voice, are not exactly familiarities to this family. Seriously, every conversation has to be HELD LIKE THIS. Me and my SO are very quiet people; it drives us batty.
That would drive me insane. Good manners for my kids were so important to us, partially because I couldn't take gross eating and shrieking!
#11
Old 02-17-2012, 04:58 PM
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Oh, that was chocolate? I thought the bathroom plumbing had backed up into the steam trays again.
#12
Old 02-17-2012, 05:00 PM
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I have witnessed the fountain! My son's basketball team had their end of season "banquet" there (don't get me started on end of season celebrations for a 5 year old's basketball team). I had been to Golden Corral years and years ago for an office Christmas party, and it was actually considerably nicer than it was back then. It was okay this time, but the food was outrageously salty. I couldn't believe how crowded the place was on a rainy Sunday afternoon, but it was packed.

Anyway, the kids did the chocolate fountain. It was not supervised by anyone working there, but I supervised when my kids went over there. I didn't see any kids putting fingers in or double dipping. There were no adults partaking, though. Probably a smart decision.
#13
Old 02-17-2012, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Covered_In_Bees! View Post
Yes I'm grossed out by it for two reasons. The first is the unsupervised child doing Og knows what with the waterfall. The second is that I seriously do not think a buffet needs another way for people to make themselves fatter.
Yes, yes, and yes. And yes.

My kids know that in our house, when it's just the 4 of us, double-dipping is acceptable. In ANY OTHER situation, you single dip and that's it, period.
#14
Old 02-17-2012, 05:19 PM
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Oh gods of the mcdonaldland underworld yes!

I thought of posting about it even but wasn't sure if it was just a local thing or if they did them at all GCs. Even at wedding receptions and private parties they strike me as somehow 'ewww' but in a restaurant that has 4,920 ill watched kids traipsing through every hour they strike me as 'Scene 1' of the Mayan prophecy.
#15
Old 02-17-2012, 06:47 PM
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OK. 20-some years ago at my cousin's insanely expensive wedding, the waiter came in with dessert. He plopped onto a dish, before our horrified eyes, a thin pastry bag, tied at one end, full of hot melted chocolate. When you pierced the bag with a fork, the chocolate blobbed out at you. It was appalling.

I asked the waiter, "what is this?" "It's called a 'chocolat sacque,' madame," he said. "That's not what they call it in the kitchen," my mother guessed.

And that, children, is the night my cousin served me a bag of warm shit.
#16
Old 02-17-2012, 06:51 PM
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I have been to Golden Corral since they put in a chocolate waterfall. It was supervised and you had very few choices of what you could stick in it. You had to use a long skewer to do it. I couldn't do the fried chicken breast like I wanted. But it didn't seem all that scary. It's behind a sneeze glass. You have to maneuver your skewered item under the glass and into the stream. It looked neat, but you get the same taste effect squirting chocolate syrup on a macaroon.
#17
Old 02-17-2012, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Shawn1767 View Post
It's behind a sneeze glass. You have to maneuver your skewered item under the glass and into the stream.
Y'all got the fancy chocolate fountain down where you are!
#18
Old 02-17-2012, 07:21 PM
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So I guess putting your penis in it is out of the question?
#19
Old 02-17-2012, 07:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Two Many Cats View Post
But somehow, the thought of the crowd at a Golden Corral poking for hours at this chocolate goo that gets changed god only knows how often, maybe double dipping treats?
You took a chip and dipped, took a bite out of it and dipped again. That's like putting the whole dip in your mouth. Next time just take a dip and end it
#20
Old 02-17-2012, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by corkboard View Post
Yes, yes, and yes. And yes.

My kids know that in our house, when it's just the 4 of us, double-dipping is acceptable. In ANY OTHER situation, you single dip and that's it, period.
In our house, when it's just the 3 of us, double-dipping is still not acceptable. Although I have never been considered a germs phone or neat-freak, I can't handle that. If y husband or daughter wants a part of my sandwich r whatever, I cut them a section, and the same if I want to taste theirs. My husband rolls his eyes, I think, but my daughter feels the same as I do.
#21
Old 02-17-2012, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by typoink View Post
It's like a glimpse into a self-inflicted emotional black hole. Golden Corral is where taste and hope go to die and rot in the sun. The hygiene of the chocolate fountain is the least of their worries.
My wife's parents take the kids there when we visit them in Florida. They should change their name to "The Golden Trough".

Last edited by Lemur866; 02-17-2012 at 11:06 PM.
#22
Old 02-17-2012, 11:16 PM
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Today I was daydreaming about how maybe I could go to the Golden Corral for breakfast on Monday. I'm thinking unlimited cheesy grits and sausage would be a perfect way to commemorate both the presidents and me having the day off from work.

</shameful confession>
#23
Old 02-17-2012, 11:28 PM
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A kid sticking his finger in it?
It could be worse. (skip to 1:50 if you are impatient)
#24
Old 02-17-2012, 11:57 PM
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I hadn't heard of this until just now, but yeah - ick.

There's a GC just off the highway we take when driving the kids to summer camp. It's conveniently located and you can get a ton of cheap food of almost any sort, so of course the kids LOVE it.

The food is.... mostly edible. nothing I'd go out of my way for. Adequate cafeteria food in endless variety. The bathrooms are consistently so disgusting that I've told the kids we are not going back.

The chain used to be a budget steakhouse, actually, and was decent for what it was.
#25
Old 02-18-2012, 01:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monstro View Post
Today I was daydreaming about how maybe I could go to the Golden Corral for breakfast on Monday. I'm thinking unlimited cheesy grits and sausage would be a perfect way to commemorate both the presidents and me having the day off from work.

</shameful confession>
Chocolate covered grits and sausage... mmmmmm!*

Actually I've never had their breakfast but should probably go; I live about two blocks from one and I don't work til noon most days.

The weirdest thing to me about Golden Corral for dinner is that they serve about 300 different dishes and every last one of them mediocre. You'd think that they'd cook something that was really good and occasionally made you think "I wish I had some of G.C.'s ____ right now". Other chains in their price range usually have something- Cracker Barrel has good chicken&rice, fried apples, and fried chicken breast for instance- but I can't think of any evening foods that GC does beyond 'it was cooked sufficiently to avoid botulism'. Or of any that are uniquely bad for that matter- they're the most "Meh" restaurant out there.

*[SIZE=1]For a while in the late 2000s there was a weird trend here- I don't know if it was elsewhere- to merge chocolate and bacon: there were chocolate bacon candy bars, chocolate & bacon offerings in various restaurants, and even a chocolate & bacon biscuit one place. I like chocolate okay and I love bacon, but the two together are like onions and ice cream.[/QUOTE]

Last edited by Sampiro; 02-18-2012 at 01:11 AM.
#26
Old 02-18-2012, 02:51 AM
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Blech. My worry is what is the temperature? My rational mind knows the amount of sugar in that fountain is probably enough to retard bacterial growth, but my irrational mind wonders if it's just warm enough to be friendly to whatever illness someone sneezes into it.

I generally avoid buffet style places and salad bars, anyway, and try to be nice enough to waitstaff so they won't spit in my food.

Blech.
#27
Old 02-18-2012, 02:59 AM
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The entire chocolate fountain experience has been ruined for me because of Paula Deen. Years ago, Food Network was running a bunch of little program snippits to advertise their Valentine's Day lineup. One of these featured Paula thrusting her tongue into a chocolate fountain. XP
#28
Old 02-18-2012, 04:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeep's Phoenix View Post
The entire chocolate fountain experience has been ruined for me because of Paula Deen. Years ago, Food Network was running a bunch of little program snippits to advertise their Valentine's Day lineup. One of these featured Paula thrusting her tongue into a chocolate fountain. XP
At which point, like a scene from Ten Commandments More, the fountain turned to corn oil and sugar.
#29
Old 02-18-2012, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by typoink View Post

It's like a glimpse into a self-inflicted emotional black hole. Golden Corral is where taste and hope go to die and rot in the sun. The hygiene of the chocolate fountain is the least of their worries.
Good Lord, well put. Golden Corral hits me where it hurts just by its mere existence as a food factory for fattening up obese people. To heck with the chocolate fountain.
#30
Old 02-18-2012, 08:47 AM
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I am really not fond of chocolate to begin with, but the idea of eating anything dipped into the chocolate fountain just makes me gag.

I was involved in the construction of our local GC. It was not far from our house and on the bike trail. A week or so after it opened, my wife and I rode our bikes there to try it out. The food was incredibly unappetizing. We never went back, and about five or six years later, the location closed.

My company has a service contract with the three remaining locations in our city, and it amazes me that they are always busy. I guess it was just my neighborhood that could not tolerate a GC in our midst.
#31
Old 02-18-2012, 09:00 AM
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I'm a bit OCD, so the very idea of everybody, with their grubby little hands, dipping their food into it, with no guarantee of no double dipping, makes me puke little carrots.
#32
Old 02-18-2012, 09:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sampiro View Post
Chocolate covered grits and sausage... mmmmmm!*

Actually I've never had their breakfast but should probably go; I live about two blocks from one and I don't work til noon most days.
I agree that their dinner offerings aren't anything to write home about. Maybe it's because breakfast foods are harder to mess up, but they are decent. Grits, sausage, waffles, pancakes, donuts, fried chicken (I'm guessing to eat with the waffles), ham, steak, scrambled eggs, omelettes, biscuits (which aren't half bad), gravy, hashbrown... You aren't going to get gourmet food there, but for $8? It's not bad.

About the chocolate fountain. I have not been exposed to such a monstrosity and do not want to investigate.
#33
Old 02-18-2012, 09:47 AM
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When I first saw this commercial, I just thought: WTF? I had never heard of one of these things, and although I do like chocolate, it looked disgusting. Not because I was thinking that people were dipping all sorts of things into it. It just looked disgusting. I wasn't really even sure what it was for.
#34
Old 02-18-2012, 09:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monstro View Post
Today I was daydreaming about how maybe I could go to the Golden Corral for breakfast on Monday. I'm thinking unlimited cheesy grits and sausage would be a perfect way to commemorate both the presidents and me having the day off from work.

</shameful confession>
We go sometimes for breakfast on Sundays. They actually cook a decent piece of steak to go with your eggs. I think it may vary wildly though as there's one near my sister and when I mentioned GC to her, she was disgusted. I read reviews on the one near her and they're uniformly negative. The one near me is much better. I've never found it dirty and seen them throw away entire trays of food on the suspicion that someone might have reached into it or dropped a sausage and put it back in. The Old Country Buffet near us was much worse but they've since gone out of business.

It's especially nice because we've been eating with a baby the last 15 months and so being able to go in, eat and leave at our leisure is great, same with not letting your food get cold as you tend to the critter.

I've seen the fountain thingie but never paid it much mind since I was eating breakfast. Never seen kids sticking random objects or appendages into it.
#35
Old 02-18-2012, 10:11 AM
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Aw Jeebus, Old Country Buffet. Where the food is dead but still hoping you will join it. When we bought our house here, we found one close and would go there for breakfast as a break from packing and unpacking. I hated it - for fuck's sake, they fucked up bacon! But Mr. singular loves chicken fried steak, and has much lower standards for food. The idea of a chocolate fountain gags me as well, and I try to protect him. He still doesn't understand why I panic and knock his hand out of the dish of mints that the snotty child in front of us at the register just grappled.
#36
Old 02-18-2012, 10:19 AM
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Tsk tsk tsk the actual name of this horror is the "Chocolate Wonderfall" - as in "I wonder what kind of infection it will give me."
#37
Old 02-18-2012, 10:21 AM
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I don't care what Mr Wonka says. I'm not eating anything out of the chocolate waterfall until I actually see that German kid alive.
#38
Old 02-18-2012, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Slithy Tove View Post
So I guess putting your penis in it is out of the question?
Only at a majority of GC locations.
#39
Old 02-18-2012, 10:46 AM
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I'm grossed out by Golden Corral in general. Their chocolate fountain doesn't at all sweeten the deal for me (ha!).

With the singular exception of Phillips, I've never been to an all-you-can-eat buffet that was anything but terrible. I'm not at all a snooty-foodie, I'll happily and enthusiastically eat at Taco Bell or Denny's or wherever, but the combination of who-knows-how-long-that's-been-sitting-there, who-knows-whose-hands-have-been-in-there (not to mention the look-that-kid-is-sticking-his-hand-in-there-right-now!!), and overall piss poor quality of the food to begin with that I've experienced every single time I've been taken (note: taken; I've never voluntarily gone to one on my own, except to Phillips) to one of these types of places, makes me gag just to think about. *shudder*
#40
Old 02-18-2012, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by DCnDC View Post
the combination of who-knows-how-long-that's-been-sitting-there, who-knows-whose-hands-have-been-in-there (not to mention the look-that-kid-is-sticking-his-hand-in-there-right-now!!),
this is why i like disney's approach to buffets. the food is placed far back from the serving line. like, so far back the adults have trouble reaching it and you have to kind of maneuver around the sneeze guard to reach the salad tongs. it's worth the annoyance knowing little grubby hands can't reach it.
#41
Old 02-18-2012, 11:42 AM
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Mythbusters tackled double dipping. The results were a bit surprising...

http://youtube.com/watch?v=c8wmb_K5uGY
#42
Old 02-18-2012, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Slithy Tove View Post
So I guess putting your penis in it is out of the question?
Only if you leave a really nice tip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anaamika View Post
You remind me of when we went out with my brother and sister in law and their kids. We were at a kid-friendly restaurant, and they brought over mozzeralla sticks and the marinara sauce. Great!...except before I could get any the kids were dipping their sticks in the sauce, eating it, and dipping again. And again. And then wiping their noses. And whatever else. Parents didn't even notice.
Wait, so I want a ruling on this-- suppose I'm eating mozzarella sticks and dipping them in marinara, as you suggest, and I begin by dipping a stick and biting off the bottom half. Then I flip it over, hold it by the bitten end, and dip the unbitten end back in the marinara. At no point has a part of the cheese stick with my bite marks touched the marinara. Are my hands intrinsically germy enough that that merely dunking a part of the stick that I've handled is contaminating? Or is this an acceptable culinary practice (at least at my next party, if not a state dinner)?
#43
Old 02-18-2012, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by appleciders View Post
Only if you leave a really nice tip.
If you left a tip, the chocolate must have been too hot for people to eat anyway.
#44
Old 02-18-2012, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Slithy Tove View Post
So I guess putting your penis in it is out of the question?
"If I had known it was going to be that kind of party, I'd have stuck my dick in the mashed potatoes!"
#45
Old 02-18-2012, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by appleciders View Post
Wait, so I want a ruling on this-- suppose I'm eating mozzarella sticks and dipping them in marinara, as you suggest, and I begin by dipping a stick and biting off the bottom half. Then I flip it over, hold it by the bitten end, and dip the unbitten end back in the marinara. At no point has a part of the cheese stick with my bite marks touched the marinara. Are my hands intrinsically germy enough that that merely dunking a part of the stick that I've handled is contaminating? Or is this an acceptable culinary practice (at least at my next party, if not a state dinner)?
I'd say that's clearly in-bounds of proper dipping etiquette. If your hands are already intrinsically germy enough that merely handling it is contaminating, there shouldn't be any shared dipping allowed period.
#46
Old 02-18-2012, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by appleciders View Post
Wait, so I want a ruling on this-- suppose I'm eating mozzarella sticks and dipping them in marinara, as you suggest, and I begin by dipping a stick and biting off the bottom half. Then I flip it over, hold it by the bitten end, and dip the unbitten end back in the marinara. At no point has a part of the cheese stick with my bite marks touched the marinara. Are my hands intrinsically germy enough that that merely dunking a part of the stick that I've handled is contaminating? Or is this an acceptable culinary practice (at least at my next party, if not a state dinner)?
I think this is fine among family or close friends, but not for a less intimate gathering (work party, first meeting with the in-laws, etc.).
#47
Old 02-18-2012, 12:41 PM
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*lives a happy carefree life unencumbered by lysol-fueled fears of germ warfare*



You would think a perpetual chocolate fountain would gross me out. It's at a great temp for incubating germs and the chocolate is basically one giant microbe food source but I find myself unmoved by images of kids with runny noses dipping their marshmallows in after each bite. Perhaps I will die someday slowly and painfully from a lingering brain-eating bacteria contracted from improperly sanitized chocolate fountains but I imagine I'll get run over by a bus long before than.
#48
Old 02-18-2012, 01:03 PM
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Yeesh, when I first saw the commercial, I was left with the impression that they brought a small one to your table, like a fondue pot.

My cousin had a chocolate fountain at his wedding, and that was nice, but at some budget restaurant? Uh...I think I'll pass.
#49
Old 02-18-2012, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Slithy Tove View Post
So I guess putting your penis in it is out of the question?
That might be the least of your worries (YouTube).
#50
Old 02-18-2012, 03:00 PM
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This thread was my first introduction to the Golden Corral and it sounds nasty. I don't like chocolate enough to be enticed by a chocolate fountain. I agree that places like Hometown Buffet and Family Buffet can be pretty damn disgusting with substandard food and cleanliness.

I will admit to going to our local Chinese Buffet though. The food is really good. It's really small and there are usually only 2 or 3 other tables occupied when we go there. The food is changed regularly.


I miss York Steak House. It was in the Auburn Mall when I was growing up and my mom even worked there for a while. Again, it was small. I think small is the key with a buffet.
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