I feel like a dodo bird; the last of a dying breed. Ok, so the dodo is already extinct, but I feel that when I die out (and those like me), today’s youth will be worse off. Perhaps, I’m being over-dramatic and old fashioned, but a simple incident today really made me think.
We were out having lunch. The place we were eating always manages to cross-contaminate (gluten) my food, so I figured, what the heck. If I’m going to be symptomatic, might as well enjoy what I am going to eat. I order fish and chips. Now, here on the West coast, people love tartar sauce (excuse me for a second while I make the ‘yuck’ face). Back East, there was tartar sauce, but cocktail sauce was more prevalent.
I ask my server if they had cocktail sauce. He answers negatively. I then ask if there is horseradish available. Yes, there is. SURPRISE my dear young chap, you do have cocktail sauce. You are just inexperienced in the kitchen to know what ingredients make up that tangy sauce.
Before our meal arrives, our server is sent home from his shift and a new waiter introduces himself. He was told I needed horseradish with my meal. Again, lack of training. I had to ask for a small bowl to mix it in. No spoon was given and the small bowl was half full of horseradish.
Ok, so it appears I am making enough for 10 tables. Good grief! I emptied most the horseradish on my plate, added the ketchup, a couple teaspoons of lemon juice, a good mix and I’m done. Shocking how if it doesn’t come out of a bottle, people are clueless as to how to make something so simple.
As our plates are being cleared, I had to tell the poor chap, “FYI…should you get another request for cocktail sauce, they really only need about a tablespoon of horseradish.” I lifted the ketchup bottle and told him he gave me enough to make enough to fit into the contents of the bottle.
He laughed. Said he had no idea, but he wanted me to have enough so he didn’t have to go back to get me more. Really? Nice gesture, but that’s wasting company product and your job is to accommodate, if need be. He appreciated learning how to make the cocktail sauce. We had a chuckle about it.
It still amazes me how little servers know about food. Today’s servers are not like I was when I waitressed. I took pride in my food knowledge. I learned about what I was serving, how it was prepared, what was in it. The younger hospitality service generation just doesn’t have the same work ethic,
I am like the dodo bird. When I am extinct, interactions like today, will become a thing of the past.