Snippy Snippets

Sometimes a shallow labor pool can work to your advantage, and even be entertaining.

I’m seeing that some restaurant folks have drifted away from the spirit of the pop-up dinner.  What I’m seeing is events catered by established restaurants being called pop-ups.  The pop-up was established by chefs without restaurants that wanted to showcase their talent in varied locations, often done somewhat illegally with very short notice on the location so they wouldn’t get caught , then a message would be put out on some form of social media or by text to those who reserved spots at the table   The pop-up is now being done by large-scale caterers and restaurants with very accessible  advance notice. There’s nothing cool about that.

This is not cool.  Someone said it’s akin to what McDonald’s does when they show you photo of a perfectly made Big Mac, then you go to the restaurant and the one you get is a mess.  It’s not the same.  What McDonald’s is doing is showing you their own work in its best possible form, then giving you the same work with less effort put into it. When you take a picture off the internet from another restaurant and represent it as your work without giving credit, and making the potential customer aware that it’s someone else’s creative work, that’s deceptive and wrong.

When Jennifer and I operated the Yawning Duck Pasta Co. we decided to hold communal dinners by putting the two 4’x8′ farm tables I had made together to form a large square with sixteen chairs around it.  I called the Saratoga Springs Building Department just to see if there was any permit we needed.  The first thing I was told was to get an architect, which would run us $1500.00.  I thought it was a joke and I told them I thought I could figure out how to place the chairs evenly around the table without professional help.  It was no joke and the now retired building inspector had no sense of humor.  I told him we could not afford that and would not be doing the dinners in our pasta shop.  We must have done at least ten of them.  What’s the statute of limitations on illegal dinners?

I take pictures of my work using my cell phone all the time during dinner service.  Take advantage of the slower parts of the night, either at the beginning or at the end when you’ve got time to snap a pic or two before the plate goes out. This way you are representing your work as it really goes to actual diners.

“Every time I go there its bad.”  Then stop going.  Who has regular customers that complain every time they’re in?

It’s not that you’ve over cooked it, it’s that you served it.

For the first time since 1972 I have little interest in the Olympics.  I remember Mark Spitz winning 7 gold medals, and remember Frank Shorter winning the marathon.  I also remember the theme song on ABC, and Jim McKay.  I also knew that I wanted to be an Olympian, long before I knew I could run.

Steele Johnson is a member of the US Olympic diving team that is.


That’s enough tote bags.  One of the cool things to give out at events is an Earth friendly tote bag, one you can bring to the grocery store or farmer’s market so you don’t have to use plastic bags.  Well, we’ve got at least 30 of them at our house, and I’m sure that in 30 years it will become an environmental problem here in the US as we tend to beat a dead horse and over-do things to a fault.

Speaking of dead horses, I’m not sure I’ll get to the track this season.

Cooks that have no interest in food, politicians that have no interest in helping people, doctors that don’t have a few minutes to talk, restauranteurs that think they’re always right, customers that think they’re always right, people who aren’t aware that they’re not the only people at the farmer’s market, people who tailgate on the highway when you’re passing the schmuk in the middle lane going 60mph, even though you’re going 75 mph, the left lane was not made just for you, and when I’m done passing I’ll move over.  People who travel in the left lane, people with little interest in learning to do their jobs better, people who think Fox News is news, people who think MSNBC is news.

No matter what restaurant job I’ve ever had, in both fine dining and pubs alike, I’ve always given my best effort and I’ve always demanded that all those around me give the same effort.  When that effort is not supported throughout the restaurant then it’s very difficult to have a truly great restaurant. The lack of effort across the board is why most restaurants are not great.  Some have great service and just ok food, some have great food and just ok service. This is why in our area Yono’s stands out, they have both.

Welcome to Saratoga Salt and Char.  I have not been yet, but I’m told that quality of the food matches the quality of the service.

This is unscientific, but my observations tell me the most frequent types of vehicles that tailgate are the Audi, BMW, and Lexus.  See a pattern here? I’m not saying all owners of these types of cars are assholes because I have some dear friends that own BMWs and they’re not assholes.  Like I said, this is unscientific so I cannot confirm or rule out the douchiness of the others.  The other vehicle that I tend to have six feet from my bumper at 75 mph is the unnecessarily large pick up truck, like the Ford F-250 with the squirrely little fella driving.  I’m not saying he’s trying to make up for any short comings, but it would explain why you need large off-road tires and roll bars in and around Albany NY.

Also unscientific.  My observations tell me that at least 30% of men do not wash their hands after using a public restroom. I’ll leave you with that.




3 thoughts on “Snippy Snippets

  1. I drive an Audi and I get tailgated by people pissed off because I’m leaving too much room between me and the car in front of me (who has four cars in front of them). Where the hell do they think they’re gonna go if I magically wasn’t on the road?

    Liked by 1 person

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