Make sure you are not the customer that no one is excited to see
How do you know if you are annoying your favourite restaurants? Have you been dining in and putting off the familiar faces of those lovely waiters, chefs, and restaurant owners who you thought you were oh so close with?
Sometimes we are unaware of certain character traits, mannerisms, and habits that we possess since they have become so second nature to us. Let’s take a moment to step back and analyse our actions– it might be time to refine how we conduct ourselves to make sure that we enjoy our meals and that restaurants welcome us back with open arms.
Not honouring your reservation
One of the biggest pet peeves for a restaurant is when diners reserve, and do not show up. A no-show is a no-go. Not only have they blocked off a table for you but this means, that for a reservation-only establishment, you have cost them income. If you know you cannot make it, then be sure to cancel well in advance and not a few moments before.
Last minute special requests
Most restaurants are more than happy to cater to your dietary restrictions and allergies, but truly appreciate a heads up (especially if you are visiting a fine-dining or tasting-menu-style restaurant). It causes quite the inconvenience for the kitchen with regards to changing a set menu, scrambling to find the right produce, and needing to make significant changes with little to no notice.
In the same vein, restaurants are often glad to make small adjustments to their dishes to make diners happy but, do not try to change a meal entirely. You will definitely not become a favourite guest if you ask for a different kind of bread, sauce, topping and well, basically try to create a new dish.
Not reading the menu properly
Restaurants have made their menus meticulously so that diners can fully grasp what a dish is all about. Be sure to read thoroughly before you ask your server questions that are already clearly answered in the dishes' descriptions.
Snapping and waving your hands
Treat everyone with respect. Do not call your server by snapping, clapping or waving your hands excessively. Not only is it rude, but it calls unnecessary attention to your table.
Interrupting the server when they are with other customers
Running a restaurant is a tough business. These professionals are always on their feet and on the move, and will do their best to attend to you in a timely fashion. When a server is with another table, do not call and interrupt their discussion so try to get your request in.
See also: A Taste of Home with Alex De Leon
A long leisurely meal is truly a luxury, isn’t it? However, overstaying your welcome by occupying the table for far longer than you should is definitely a no-no. After you have paid, relaxing for an extra couple of hours is a habit that is quite frowned upon.
Making yourself (too) at home
Their house, their rules. Don’t try to impose your wants and desires on a restaurant that has made its service style, or house rules clear. If they set a dress code, prevent young children from dining in, ask for no-flash photography, or purposefully set a certain lighting ambience, don’t cause a fuss by forcing your requests on the establishment. The restaurant has set the table, and designed their interiors in a precise manner and they most definitely did not ask for your help for a little refurbishing.
It is totally fine to request for a table that strikes your fancy but, wait to be attended to by the host. Don’t simply stroll in and take a seat as some tables may have been pre-assigned, reserved or need for other matters.
When dining on your own or with a group, be sure to order accordingly. It is quite rude to be a large party and to only have one person order a meal while everyone drinks water and indulges in the complimentary bread basket. Even when dining alone or as a twosome, be sure to eat well and not simply take up space in the eatery.