So You Want To Be A Waiter

The best book on waiting tables that you have never read – yet

Daily Archives: June 27, 2009

Possible positive news from restaurant sector

From Restaurant News’  Breaking News:

:snip:

“The NRA is predicting that eating and drinking places will add 381,800 jobs between June and August, a 4.1-percent increase over the industry’s employment levels in March. The rise in employment may also be an indicator of the beginning of an economic recovery for the industry, said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the NRA’s research and knowledge group

“While overall U.S. employment growth remains negative, the industry is bucking that trend as it added jobs in May for the first time in 10 months,” Riehle said. “Building on that gain, the growth in summer employment is a clear sign that the restaurant industry remains a powerhouse in the U.S. economy.”

:snip:

Read the rest of the article here:

http://www.nrn.com/breakingNews.aspx?id=368844

However, Florida and Arizona are still seeing predictions of a decline in jobs, so all isn’t totally rosy.

One thing that this indicates is the possible migration of workers in other fields into the restaurant business. If you are one of those people, especially if you’re going to try to be a waiter, you’ve come to the right place. You might want to go back to the beginning of the blog and start reading through. You can reduce your learning curve significantly if you read some of my posts on the subject of waiting tables.

I think that some people are going to be in for a rude awakening if they get a job as a front-of-the-house restaurant employee, especially if they have only seen the job from the other side of the table.  Based on some of the comments on waiter-related sites, many guests wonder, “How hard could it be?”,  “Servers are just spoiled workers who have it easy”, or “Servers should be happy with whatever tip I voluntarily give them”.

I’ve always said that everyone should have to be a waiter for a year because it will help them in life, as well as seeing dining out from a different perspective. However, I usually recommend that at the beginning of one’s work career, not after. It will be interesting to see what the impact of this potential flood of “civilians” into the workplace is.

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Cookbook of the day – Sauternes

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Sauternes

by Bernard Ginestet

Publisher:Jacques Legrand S.A. Paris ©1990

ISBN-  0-582-07544-0

ISBN- 2-905969-39-3

This is a book that you might have to dig for. It’s a mostly European-distributed book from the series Bernard Ginestet’s Guide to the Vineyards of France. It was translated by John Meredith and has a foreword by Nicholas Faith, who points out that, Unfortunately, the French edition went to press before Bernard could discuss the biggest single revolution in the history of the great sweet wines of the bands of the Ciron: the way in which the technique of cryo-extraction has swept the vineyard, even such vineyards as Chateau d’Yquem, in the past few years.

Other than that topic, you’d be hard-pressed to find a better discussion of the wine history of the region as well as a rundown of the chateaux of Sauternes, down to a discussion of the soil composition . Most get at least a cursory examination, some very extensive discussions, and at the very least, a listing of the various statistics and whether or not they allow visits.

There’s a great map of the region, color-coded according to soil type. The photo on the cover shows a typical bunch of grapes which clearly shows the contrast between “healthy” grapes and the raisinesque botytris-attacked “raisins”. There is a comprehensive discussion about botrytis and Ginestet would seem to hope that the popular term “noble rot” disappear from the lexicon. In fact, he points out that this isn’t what we normally would call “rot”, as it doesn’t attack dead tissue but living, healthy grapes. The grapes end up getting picked in two different categories of decrepitude, shrivelled and dessicated. This necessitates constant pickings, and the price of the product is a reflection of this reality.

You get a detailed report on the meteorology of the region as you would expect from a book covering a French region, as dependent on terroir as they are.

The language is what you expect from translated French, lugubrious and academic. It achieves this without becoming treacly or haughty. There are copious photographs, which give you a sense of the culture of the region. There are even 5 “savory dishes” recipes from regional chefs in French; recipes that utilize Sauternes in the dish.

I don’t recommend this book for people only getting into wine. This is for the intermediate wine enthusiast or better. It’s not that it’s above the head of a beginner, it just goes into more detail about a small but significant region of French wine, a region that the beginner might not even encounter, as most restaurants don’t even offer a Sauternes on their wine list. Additionally, it’s not a common book and might be difficult to find at a decent price (I was lucky enough to find mine for $3.00 – would I have piad $20 for it? Probably not, although for a wine expert it would be worth the price).

Botrytis