In your opinion, what are the qualities that a good restaurant should have? Do you judge it by the food, the service or the ambience of the place? Although, people have different opinions about it, good restaurant are pretty much the same.
A good restaurant is not about the expensive bathroom soap, cloth napkins or the tranquil ambience. A sandwich shop can be just as good as any fancy fine dining restaurant. If you look for a great experience every time you go out to eat, this is what you should look for.
While good food may not be the only determinant of a good restaurant, it’s on the top of the list. Unless the food is fresh and tasty, no amount of great service or lovely ambience will make you visit again. Good restaurants will plan the price appropriate to the type of food they serve. The prices of a sandwich shop cannot be the same as an Italian restaurant.
Great Customer Service
Going to a restaurant and experiencing awful service can be very frustrating. You sit at the table and no one comes to greet you, you don’t have cutlery, the food takes too long to arrive, etc. Good restaurants have friendly staff that greet you, seat you and attend to you. They will give you enough time with the menu, refill your glass of water without asking and most importantly not hover during your meal.
When you are unsure about what to order, a knowledgeable server is very helpful. When you ask the server about an item on the menu, you can tell if he is genuinely excited about the food or if he is just giving out a rehearsed speech. Servers must have a deep familiarity with the food and the establishment. And when a problem is pointed out with the food, the servers should try to understand the customer without getting defensive.
Once you order your food, you won’t want to be waiting for hours for the food to come to your table. Now, fast service is based on the type of food being served. Home style cooking is definitely bound to take longer than other dishes. However, you should never be kept waiting for more than an hour.
You don’t want to go to the bathroom to wash your hands only to find the place absolutely disgusting and smelly. If the places you can see are that disgusting; imagine what the places you can’t see will look like, for example, the kitchen. Do you really want your food to be cooked in a filthy place?
A good restaurant is neither too loud nor too quiet. You shouldn’t need to shout to the other person at your table for them to hear you. Also, the tables should not be placed very close to each other to avoid cramming customers. The lights should be bright enough for you to read the menu and the entire ambience should just be lovely and inviting.
Seamless Plate Clearing
This is a fine line in servicing. You don’t want your plate to be cleared immediately after you’ve eaten because this makes you feel like you are being rushed out the door. The plates shouldn’t sit on your table long before you have eaten as well, as this makes you feel neglected. What’s much worse is when they clear the plates of others at the table, leaving you eating by yourself. Clearing of the plates is an important sign of good service.
Accommodating Within Reason
Chefs hate it when customers ask to alter the dish that they order, like more sauce or salad on the side, etc. But, good restaurants are accommodating. If you’re allergic to something, they shouldn’t put that in your food. If you want to know the vegetarian options, they should be nice enough to explain. It all comes down to the tone: if you make a request thoughtfully, the restaurant should also be thoughtful. If the server snaps at you, you better spend your money elsewhere.
When you notice all these traits in a restaurant, you can be sure that you’ll be taken care of.
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