Articles

Restaurants (you’re going to see alot of this)

In Uncategorized on November 18, 2010 by grahamharrowell

In London at the weekend we presented ourselves to the maitre d’ (or rather some sort of receptionist behind a desk) to claim our eight o’clock reservation. Now this is a bit early for me but nonethless I was looking forward to a pleasant evening. “You’ve got the table until ten o’clock.” “What?” “After that you’re welcome to stay on in the bar.” Thanks, but no thanks that’s not what I came out for.

I find it quite hard to get through a proper meal in under 2 hours. Even without an aperitif there’s the pleasure of trawling through the menu, discussing the various dishes on offer, comparing choices and combinations on offer, asking the waiter’s advice, considering the decision in the light of the wine list and then finally, having settled on what to have, placing your order. There’s a period of pleasure for a start.

The starter arrives. You taste it, share it, enjoy it. Then there’s the gap between courses and so it goes on until, eventually, coffee arrives. Then you chat on until it’s time to pay up and leave.

Not in London. Apparently, in the UK people spend an average of only 40 minutes over a meal. What is going on? This is hardly the way to do justice to the food, nor is it any way to treat your body and certainly not a very social activity.

I was surprised to learn that the restaurant we visited starts serving at six o’clock! On Monday night I went into one at half seven and startled the staff. Nobody else turned up much before half past eight. It seems that in London turnover of tables is important. Not content with charging a high price they hope to do that 3 times a night at least. I think it’s greedy.

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2 Responses to “Restaurants (you’re going to see alot of this)”

  1. I can see you’re going to have a problematic re-entry to UK life 😉

  2. On so many fronts, ma chere….

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