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#1
Old 06-09-2013, 12:54 PM
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What does "no substitutions" mean on a slow food menu.

OK, I might go to a slow food place once a month, (except on vacation where my foodie snob sister wants to try "local" cuisine constantly). So what does "no substitutions" mean on a menu?

"We're foodie snobs and we know better than you what is good"
"We make a bunch of this at once, and can't be bothered to make a special plate for you"
"This is something we buy from Sysco that we throw into the microwave"

Last edited by Mdcastle; 06-09-2013 at 12:55 PM.
#2
Old 06-09-2013, 01:08 PM
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"This is the recipe. If you don't like it, order something else."
"We're not McDonalds."
"Our line cooks are just not that clever."
#3
Old 06-09-2013, 01:13 PM
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All of the above.

Obligatory Five Easy Pieces diner scene
#4
Old 06-09-2013, 01:13 PM
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Perhaps it means we only purchase as much as we expect to sell, so if we substitute one item on an entrée, it means that we will then be one full entrée short.

Call the restaurant a couple of weeks in advance to book a slow-food substitution, and if they refuse, ask why.
#5
Old 06-09-2013, 01:16 PM
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"We've priced this meal at $x for these Y items, and if we'll have to charge you $Z more to maintain our profit margin if want us to change it."

Customers are not above asking for steak to be included as an ingredient in the daily hamburger special, at the same price as the original hamburger special.
#6
Old 06-09-2013, 01:19 PM
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We used to do substitutions, but then either: too many people took advantage of it and it slowed us down, or, there was mix-up which caused a big kerfuffle. Either way, it is not worth the hassle anymore.
#7
Old 06-09-2013, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DonLogan View Post
I ran into that problem when I tried to order toast at a diner at lunch time. The owner refused, saying that toast could only be served at breakfast time. We had this discussion while he was standing beside the toaster, which had bread beside it.
#8
Old 06-09-2013, 01:28 PM
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It means "We don't like smartasses."
#9
Old 06-09-2013, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mdcastle View Post
OK, I might go to a slow food place once a month, (except on vacation where my foodie snob sister wants to try "local" cuisine constantly).
You know your sister better than I do, but I hope you're not calling her a "foodie snob" just because she's adventurous and enjoys trying new things.
Quote:
So what does "no substitutions" mean on a menu?
My first guess would be that it means "We're tired of people asking to substitute things that are more expensive (or more complicated to prepare) without paying extra for them."
#10
Old 06-09-2013, 03:58 PM
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Or, "We're not your personal chef. We're a restaurant, and we worked hard to put this menu together. If you can't find something you like, we're sorry, but you can go somewhere else."
#11
Old 06-09-2013, 04:01 PM
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I feel obligated to post this quote from The Big Bang Theory:
Quote:
Leonard: Can we get an order of dumplings, but with three instead of four.

Waiter: No substitutions.

Leonard: This isn’t a substitution, it’s a reduction.

Waiter: Okay, no reductions.
#12
Old 06-09-2013, 04:07 PM
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This is the first time I've seen the term "slow food" so I googled it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slow_Food

Are there really that many restaurants that specialize in this and are they more hard ass about "no substitutions" than regular restaurants?
#13
Old 06-09-2013, 06:00 PM
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Funny, I had just assumed the OP was trying to say "Restaurants other than Fast Food Restaurants". Like saying "Sit Down Restaurants". I didn't realize it was a thing either.
#14
Old 06-09-2013, 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Quimby View Post
Funny, I had just assumed the OP was trying to say "Restaurants other than Fast Food Restaurants". Like saying "Sit Down Restaurants". I didn't realize it was a thing either.
You're probably right about what the OP actually meant.
#15
Old 06-09-2013, 09:35 PM
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It may just mean that certain things are made ahead of time. For example, a restaurant might make up a hundred salads (as in "soup or salad") for the dinner rush. If you say "I'd like the salad, but could you make it a romaine salad instead of the house salad?" Now, someone as to figure out that salad, make that salad, price that salad, adjust the bill or just give it to you as a substitute and take a loss on it. Or if you go to a Mexican restaurant and ask for the "Chef's special Enchilada and Flauta with Spanish rice, but with no corn in the enchiladas" Well, it doesn't mean it was from Sysco and came in frozen, but they likely make up the filling in big batches ahead of time and subbing the enchilada for something else will result in it being an ala carte plate with a different price.

Another reason is that with certain plates being no subs, these chefs and cooks can make them blindfolded and very quickly. If they have to slow down to read directions (and make mistakes) it costs more.
#16
Old 06-09-2013, 09:57 PM
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I expect this to mean don't ask for cottage cheese in place of the soup, and you're not getting mashed potatoes in place of the broccoli. I do expect to be able to omit any item from coming out with my meal and still being charged the original price. It's a dinner plate and the price is figured serving what's listed. You order what you want as a side and pay for it.
#17
Old 06-09-2013, 10:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Or, "We're not your personal chef. We're a restaurant, and we worked hard to put this menu together. If you can't find something you like, we're sorry, but you can go somewhere else."
And we wonder why most restaurants fail.
#18
Old 06-09-2013, 10:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Or, "We're not your personal chef. We're a restaurant, and we worked hard to put this menu together. If you can't find something you like, we're sorry, but you can go somewhere else."
And if enough of your customers do exactly that because you are persnickety about simple requests, you won't have to worry about the issue at all because you won't have a viable business. Personally, I'm very quick to vote with my dollars when businesses demonstrate that petty policies come before customer satisfaction.
#19
Old 06-09-2013, 10:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Or, "We're not your personal chef. We're a restaurant, and we worked hard to put this menu together. If you can't find something you like, we're sorry, but you can go somewhere else."
That's the "snob" interpretation, in nicer wording.

That said, not my personal chef perhaps, but I am the one paying for the meal. I'm sure you did try to come up with the best combination you could devise, Chef, but it doesn't work for me.

They may mean "we're snobs who know what's good for you" but to me it always comes off as "we made this six hours ago and it's been sitting under a heat lamp." And I am a foodie.

Last edited by Hershele Ostropoler; 06-09-2013 at 10:31 PM.
#20
Old 06-09-2013, 10:39 PM
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Originally Posted by madsircool View Post
And we wonder why most restaurants fail.
That's not why most restaurants fail.
#21
Old 06-10-2013, 12:39 AM
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Originally Posted by madsircool View Post
And we wonder why most restaurants fail.
Most restaurants would probably fail if they had to customize each dish for each single customer. Not enough $ for the work, because most people who want that sort of treatment aren't willing to pay for it.
#22
Old 06-10-2013, 04:16 AM
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I used to manage the kitchen of a fish joint with nearly unlimited customization. Twelve types of seafood, four sizes (2-8oz), seven marinades, with choices of custom bread, tortilla, sides, toppings, etc. It was a fucking nightmare to cook and took experienced line cooks months to learn. Kitchens are about efficiency and consistency, and anything that gets in the way of these two things will negatively impact your ability to turn out a quality product. Occasionally you can find skilled cooks that can handle the difficulty of custom orders, but it's much simpler and more reliable to simply teach workers one thing and let them repeat it over and over.

Last edited by Rex Goliath; 06-10-2013 at 04:16 AM.
#23
Old 06-10-2013, 04:27 AM
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There's probably also an issue of what they stocked up on. Let's say that onion rings and french fries are normally the same price. But they got a deal on french fries this week from their supplier so they bought extra french fries. And they put some specials on the menu that include french fries. If they let people substitute onion rings for the french fries, they'll lose the advantage they gained from the sale-priced french fries and they'll be stuck with a surplus of unused french fries.
#24
Old 06-10-2013, 04:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hershele Ostropoler View Post
That's the "snob" interpretation, in nicer wording.

That said, not my personal chef perhaps, but I am the one paying for the meal. I'm sure you did try to come up with the best combination you could devise, Chef, but it doesn't work for me.

They may mean "we're snobs who know what's good for you" but to me it always comes off as "we made this six hours ago and it's been sitting under a heat lamp." And I am a foodie.
It's not, "we know what's good for you". It's, "this is what we're offering." It has nothing to do with snobbishness. It's about showing some respect for other people's jobs, and about not being a nudnik.

The restaurant prints a menu. The diners pick something from the menu. The restaurant serves the food. The diners pay. That's how the process is supposed to work.
#25
Old 06-10-2013, 07:22 AM
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I was at a place that called itself a bistro/bakery/cafe. I selected a sandwich from the hand written on a chalk board menu. I asked for that sandwich to be made without the red peppers. I was told the sandwiches are already prepared, that she'd be happy to pick most of the peppers off but there would be pepper remnants...

I think that system doesn't really allow for substitutions.

I wonder if places that put that on the menu use it on an as needed basis, so that if I ask for sliced tomato instead of fries they might say "no problem" but if I ask for ahi tuna instead of turkey in my chef salad they can point to that and say "sorry...policy"

Do people really try and upgrade without expecting to pay? Customers really will never cease to amaze me.

There were plenty of deli customers I served who'd get their orders and pay and add as if it was an afterthought "oh, could I get ..." and ask for some thing that would have been charged for on the original order but with a building line it was faster to just hand it over. I suspect most of it was sincere "I forgot I wanted potato salad today" but there were a handful of repeat offenders that probably thought they were beating the system.

In a true fine dining situation I'd trust that the chef knows better, but in a place that offers things I could cook myself if I weren't lazy I don't hesitate to ask for that with cheddar instead of swiss.

Last edited by gwendee; 06-10-2013 at 07:24 AM.
#26
Old 06-10-2013, 07:25 AM
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It means, "Surprise, entitled person, it's time for a lesson in not always getting your way."
#27
Old 06-10-2013, 08:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Nzinga, Seated View Post
It means, "Surprise, entitled person, it's time for a lesson in not always getting your way."
Yup. And the "entitled person" is sometimes the chef/owner of the restaurant, and not the customer! (and the restaurant closes, due to lack of said customers)

Last edited by JuliaSqueezer; 06-10-2013 at 08:56 AM. Reason: completeness
#28
Old 06-10-2013, 08:59 AM
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Originally Posted by beowulff View Post
"This is the recipe. If you don't like it, order something else."
"We're not McDonalds."
"Our line cooks are just not that clever."
The funny thing is McDonald's for a long time was known for no substitutions on their burgers. If they even let you customize your burger at all it would take a while longer than a burger with whatever the standard toppings were.
#29
Old 06-10-2013, 09:04 AM
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My suspicion is that it's not a snobbish thing, but rather an inventory thing.

If it's slow food, the idea in part, is that the food is local, organic, etc... so the restaurant probably develops the menu for that night, and gets just the amount of food they expect, since it's expensive, perishable, etc...

If they allow customers to come in and substitute, they have to do one of two things: either stock some other slow food alternative ingredient which may or may not be subbed in often enough to make money on it, or serve something that's not slow food, and may not be at the quality levels they (and their customers) expect.

Multiply this by the entree, appetizer and/or soup, sides and dessert, and you can see the conundrum they're in- if they bought ingredients for alternatives to all those, it's likely that they'd end up losing most of that money, and at the minuscule margins that meals are served at, they'd likely lose money overall for the night.

Plus the cooks have to know how to cook the alternatives for everything.

It's probably easier, more profitable and likely ensures higher quality if they just say "No Substitutions".
#30
Old 06-10-2013, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by JuliaSqueezer View Post
Yup. And the "entitled person" is sometimes the chef/owner of the restaurant, and not the customer! (and the restaurant closes, due to lack of said customers)
Refusing to do something isn't entitlement. Entitlement is demanding that others do something for you.
#31
Old 06-10-2013, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
It's not, "we know what's good for you". It's, "this is what we're offering." It has nothing to do with snobbishness. It's about showing some respect for other people's jobs, and about not being a nudnik.

The restaurant prints a menu. The diners pick something from the menu. The restaurant serves the food. The diners pay. That's how the process is supposed to work.
Lots of high end steak joints make you order each side individually, which gets quite pricey. If that's what you want to do, be prepared to pay for it. My guess is most people aren't.

Still, most of the places I go to regularly will make exceptions if you ask nicely and are willing to pay an extra charge for the trouble.
#32
Old 06-10-2013, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Rex Goliath View Post
I used to manage the kitchen of a fish joint with nearly unlimited customization. Twelve types of seafood, four sizes (2-8oz), seven marinades, with choices of custom bread, tortilla, sides, toppings, etc. It was a fucking nightmare to cook and took experienced line cooks months to learn. Kitchens are about efficiency and consistency, and anything that gets in the way of these two things will negatively impact your ability to turn out a quality product. Occasionally you can find skilled cooks that can handle the difficulty of custom orders, but it's much simpler and more reliable to simply teach workers one thing and let them repeat it over and over.
this, times infinity.

I doubt the vast majority of people who go to restaurants have a clue what it takes to put together one meal on demand let alone customize it. It's one of the reasons the US auto industry got it's ass handed to it in the 70's. The Japanese figured out it was better to bundle options than to have a car go down the assembly line with pages of options that slow it down. You're getting cruise control, intermittent wipers, rear window defroster, tachometer, and dual power mirrors whether you want them or not.

Last edited by Magiver; 06-10-2013 at 09:49 AM.
#33
Old 06-10-2013, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Refusing to do something isn't entitlement. Entitlement is demanding that others do something for you.

OK. I guess I don't get it. A cook refusing to leave off the 1/2 cup of dressing on my salad (i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it) is entitlement? Or not entitlement? Refusing to give me a baked potato (already on the menu, for other entrees) instead of french fries? I don't think these are outlandish requests, yet I have experienced them.

Whatever it's called, I'm ditching that particular restaurant from my rotation. I've done it before and I'm sure I'll do it again. If the place closes because enough "entitled customers" decide to shun them, then, oh well. Not my problem.
#34
Old 06-10-2013, 10:01 AM
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You can always ask anyway. Restaurants aren't likely to care if you try to substitute one simple side for another. But they'll be under constant assaut from people who want to substitute the salad for an expensive appetizer, or trying to replace the main course in a special with a porterhouse steak. It's just a defensive move by the restaurant allowing them to deny any unreasonable special request. The average restaurant walks a tight line between survival and ruin, and a large factor in that is unreasonable customer requests. Any restaurant would be happy to raise their prices to accomodate special requests, except customers will stop showing up. That's why there are fewer and fewer one of a kind restaurants, only the chains can manage to survive, and they often do that based on strict portion control with automated ordering systems which makes substitutions even more difficult for the staff to handle.

It's all a sad state of affairs really. Don't blame the player, blame the game.
#35
Old 06-10-2013, 10:03 AM
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Originally Posted by JuliaSqueezer View Post
OK. I guess I don't get it. A cook refusing to leave off the 1/2 cup of dressing on my salad (i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it) is entitlement? Or not entitlement? Refusing to give me a baked potato (already on the menu, for other entrees) instead of french fries? I don't think these are outlandish requests, yet I have experienced them.

Whatever it's called, I'm ditching that particular restaurant from my rotation. I've done it before and I'm sure I'll do it again. If the place closes because enough "entitled customers" decide to shun them, then, oh well. Not my problem.
Do you think a baked potato is the same thing as french fries?
#36
Old 06-10-2013, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by JuliaSqueezer View Post
OK. I guess I don't get it. A cook refusing to leave off the 1/2 cup of dressing on my salad (i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it) is entitlement? Or not entitlement?
Are they refusing to leave the dressing off the salad or refusing to lower the price because you don't want the dressing? Two different issues, and a different person is entitled in each.

I tease my husband about being the king of special orders, but he's really not that bad. Generally speaking, his special orders consist of "no cheese" and "dressing on the side" (because most restaurants use more dressing than he wants) and he has never once had a restaurant refuse either of those requests.Of course, he doesn't expect a discount on the price because the cheese was left off.
#37
Old 06-10-2013, 10:08 AM
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Originally Posted by JuliaSqueezer View Post
Refusing to give me a baked potato (already on the menu, for other entrees) instead of french fries? I don't think these are outlandish requests, yet I have experienced them.
You may not realize it, but a baked potato usually costs more than french fries. The fries will come in frozen, and are mass produced out by the farm. There's virtually no spoilage and the demand is enormous. A restaurant owner will pay more for baked potatos which have to be sorted by size, selected for appearance and lack of blemishes, and then have to be cooked ahead of time unless you want to wait an hour for your meal. Potatoes can go bad, before or after they are cooked, and there can be a lot of loss involved.

You are asking to get something for free. You may as well ask for a steak as a substitution for your hamburger. Go to the grocery store and ask them to substitute one product for a less expensive one because they carry that also and see where it gets you.

Last edited by TriPolar; 06-10-2013 at 10:08 AM.
#38
Old 06-10-2013, 10:12 AM
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
You may not realize it, but a baked potato usually costs more than french fries.
And although there are restaurants which allow you to choose from a selection, i.e. " All entrees served with a choice of baked potato, frernch fries, rice...", those restaurants have built the cost of offering the choice into the price of the entree.
#39
Old 06-10-2013, 10:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JuliaSqueezer View Post
OK. I guess I don't get it. A cook refusing to leave off the 1/2 cup of dressing on my salad (i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it) is entitlement? Or not entitlement? Refusing to give me a baked potato (already on the menu, for other entrees) instead of french fries? I don't think these are outlandish requests, yet I have experienced them.

Whatever it's called, I'm ditching that particular restaurant from my rotation. I've done it before and I'm sure I'll do it again. If the place closes because enough "entitled customers" decide to shun them, then, oh well. Not my problem.
Those aren't "outlandish", but they may not be worth the restaurant's time.

Sure, if the salads are all made on the spot, AND the dinner rush is slow enough, the chef can take the time to remember to leave the dressing off. But, if they're made ahead of time then the chef has to take time to hand-make just your salad. And even if they're made on the spot, the salad chef has a routine, and when you mess up that routine it slows everything down. Plus it increases the chance of an error, which increases the chance that the restaurant will have to throw away food, which increases the chance that the restaurant will make zero profit on your meal.

The baked potato is an even better example. Potatoes don't bake in the 10 minutes you expect to wait for your food. They take an hour. If a lot of people sub out the potato for the fries, the restaurant is going to throw away a lot of baked potatoes, which represents them throwing away money.

Now, if you want to be able to custom order anything, you have two options. You can go to Subway, where you watch them make it just the way you want it, or you can go to an extremely high end place where you order every side separately. That's voting with your dollars. But, if you want a sit-down dinner for $10, you have to put up with no substitutions quite often. And more people care about price and quality than they care about substitutions.

Last edited by yellowjacketcoder; 06-10-2013 at 10:14 AM. Reason: grammar
#40
Old 06-10-2013, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by doreen View Post
I tease my husband about being the king of special orders, but he's really not that bad. Generally speaking, his special orders consist of "no cheese" and "dressing on the side" (because most restaurants use more dressing than he wants) and he has never once had a restaurant refuse either of those requests.Of course, he doesn't expect a discount on the price because the cheese was left off.
Asking to leave something off isn't a substitution - it's an omission. It's a perfectly reasonable thing to ask, with the understanding that the restaurant may have its reasons to refuse.
#41
Old 06-10-2013, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Asking to leave something off isn't a substitution - it's an omission. It's a perfectly reasonable thing to ask, with the understanding that the restaurant may have its reasons to refuse.
I understand that - see the part I quoted about "i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it". Asking for something to be omitted is one thing- expecting a discount for it is quite another.
#42
Old 06-10-2013, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Asking to leave something off isn't a substitution - it's an omission. It's a perfectly reasonable thing to ask, with the understanding that the restaurant may have its reasons to refuse.
I understand that - see the part I quoted about "i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it". Asking for something to be omitted is one thing- expecting a discount for it is quite another.
#43
Old 06-10-2013, 10:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
It's not, "we know what's good for you". It's, "this is what we're offering." It has nothing to do with snobbishness. It's about showing some respect for other people's jobs, and about not being a nudnik.

The restaurant prints a menu. The diners pick something from the menu. The restaurant serves the food. The diners pay. That's how the process is supposed to work.
Maybe we should add this to the list of "ways in which service expectations vary by location". One of the reasons my group became such big customers with a certain fast food place in Ireland was that they'd let us remove items from their more complex burgers (we still paid the same): none of us had encountered that possibility before. But in most cases I'd find substitutions pretty absurd: what, spaghetti bolognese isn't good enough, it's got to be penne bolognese? They may not even have penne!
#44
Old 06-10-2013, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
It's not, "we know what's good for you". It's, "this is what we're offering." It has nothing to do with snobbishness. It's about showing some respect for other people's jobs, and about not being a nudnik.

The restaurant prints a menu. The diners pick something from the menu. The restaurant serves the food. The diners pay. That's how the process is supposed to work.
You left off the part where a supposedly professional chef working in a supposedly professional kitchen cooks the food. That is the point at which a reasonable level of customization should be available to the paying customer.

Go to a deli at 9am, order an egg sandwich, and you have some customization available:

Size - 1, 2 or 3 eggs
Egg - Fried hard, over easy, sunny side, scrambled
Bread - roll, bagel, long roll, toast (white, rye, wheat)
Cheese - none, american, provolone
Meat - none, bacon, sausage, ham, Taylor ham (here in NJ)
Seasonings - none, salt, pepper
Sauces - none, ketchup, hot sauce, mayonnaise, mustard, russian dressing

All for 1 stinking little sandwich, and a well run deli will happily make any of these sandwiches without complaining that you aren't selecting from one of their pre-determined egg sandwich styles.

They can manage this at a price of $3-5 because they have a process to manage it. A restaurant that is unable to manage customization is not well run, customers do not necessarily want to eat exactly the meal you designed*, so you should have the ability to cook and serve meals that your customers want to eat. If baked potatoes are more expensive than french fries, then empower someone to say "Yes, we can substitute, but it is $1 more."



*exceptions can be made here for restaurants where the purpose is to eat exactly what the head chef designs. This is not the raison d'etre of most eateries.
#45
Old 06-10-2013, 11:20 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Atlanta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesesteak View Post
If baked potatoes are more expensive than french fries, then empower someone to say "Yes, we can substitute, but it is $1 more."
That is the best of both worlds, but it does open the door to a customer going "Oh, I didn't see that it cost more, I shouldn't have to pay" or "well, if you can substitute X for Y, you should be able to substitute Z for Y".

Allowing a sub with a cost increase would be nice, but I can understand why some restaurants don't want the hassle.
#46
Old 06-10-2013, 11:37 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 439
The "I'm a paying customer" mentality is getting out of control.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JuliaSqueezer View Post
refusing to leave off the 1/2 cup of dressing on my salad (i.e., forcing me to pay for it, even if I don't eat it)
Please tell me you did not honestly try to negotiate a discount on your salad because you asked them to leave the dressing off?
#47
Old 06-10-2013, 11:42 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: The Swamp
Posts: 7,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesesteak View Post
They can manage this at a price of $3-5 because they have a process to manage it.
They can do this because a deli is an assembly line, not a kitchen.
#48
Old 06-10-2013, 11:47 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Tel Aviv
Posts: 22,430
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesesteak View Post
You left off the part where a supposedly professional chef working in a supposedly professional kitchen cooks the food. That is the point at which a reasonable level of customization should be available to the paying customer.
And when the level of customization is available, it is featured on the menu in the form of clearly listed choices and options. If it isn't on the menu, it isn't available.
#49
Old 06-10-2013, 11:57 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
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Posts: 37,451
I'm wondering what other businesses people expect substitutions from? You can always ask, but what is there to get up in arms about if the grocery store offers sale on a 2 liter bottle of soda and you want the same discount on a 1 liter bottle? What if I wanted the keyed lockset from the hardware store but wanted a different deadbolt, should I expect them to substitute a deadbolt of greater value for the same price? If I go to get a haircut and say I don't need a shampoo because I just washed my hair should I expect a discount? How about a car dealership where I ask for some different rims at the same price?

You can always ask, but I don't understand anger at being turned down for asking for a special service or product. If you don't like the choices at a restaurant, or any other business, go somewhere else.
#50
Old 06-10-2013, 12:20 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Lovely Montclair, NJ
Posts: 12,417
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
If I go to get a haircut and say I don't need a shampoo because I just washed my hair should I expect a discount?
Imagine you go to a Barber and he has pictures of hair styles in a chart. You say, can you make the top like Pic#3 and the back like Pic #5, and he points at the bottom of the chart where it says"no substitutions."

The service industry encompasses a wide range of offerings, some of which require the ability to customize, and some which do not. When you're talking about something as personal as a haircut, or food to eat, it makes sense to offer a degree of customization. Other services, like phone service, it doesn't make sense to offer customization, you have a menu of available services, and customers pick from that.
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