Once upon a time, A FATHER, his adult son and daughter and their spouses all went out to dinner at a restaurant near where the son lives. The son has been to this low key place a number of times.

The adult son and his wife ordered- Caesar Salad with steak, exactly as it appears on the menu for the wife and Gnocchi Sorrentino exactly how it appears on the menu for the adult son.

The sister had many special requests as to how she wanted her and her families food prepared. One Caesar salad no croutons, one with no cheese, one with no dressing. Then the actual meal- can you swap capellini for penne, how about spinach instead of zucchini…blah blah blah…and the waiter said to every request past the salad- “I can ask the chef, but I can’t guarantee anything.”

My the time the waiter got to the FATHER, you could tell the waiter was frazzled. THe FATHER asked for sautéed broccoli. The restaurant doesn’t do broccoli- they do broccoli rabe…When the waiter said this to the FATHER, the FATHER said to his adult son:

You know the people here. Go put some pressure on them to do things the way we want.

This completely and totally made the son uncomfortable. While the son is no pushover, the son doesn’t like to make waves with people who are preparing his food. He also doesn’t really “know” the people here. They are friendly, but it’s not like they’re best friends. The son is perfectly happy ordering things as they appear on the menu and doesn’t ever want to be put in the position where he “should talk to someone”. The son just wants to go to a local place and eat the delicious bread they put on the table and a nice plate of gnocchi Sorrentino, and a carafe of the house red.

Luckily, the chef was able to accommodate all the requests, but the son was so embarrassed he doesn’t know how often he will go to the restaurant again.

The end.

66 thoughts on “The Dinner

  1. Fairy tales typically start with “once upon a time”… why do I think this isn’t a fairy tale? There’s always the personal apology route by the son, with a promise never, ever to bring guests again… and perhaps a large tip as well.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Take out pizza next time. The son should return mention it has been some time since he was out with the entire family and totally forgot some of his family think they are chef’s – he’ll be returning because he loves the place but he will not be back with them (unless it is just his mom). I love going to a restaurant and want to enjoy the food as the chef intended it, not as I feel it should be made.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. He should be busy the next time they want to go out😆 if they’re that picky, why do they bother going out? Why not just stay home and make whatever they want? Or is being an obnoxious diner part of the attraction of eating out?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. The son should tell them to just stay home. Or thay the cat and dog don’t mind if they come over😁 I just can’t imagine someone being that picky. My husband is incredibly picky, and he’ll request no mayo on a burger, but that’s it. These people need to get over themselves.


  4. This is obviously not an Irish Catholic family because the son would be making fun of his sister and father about how picky and petty they are. He’d also be asking them where it said on the menu that these changes were available.

    oh wait! that’s my family and that’s my bad habit. disregard.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Gosh, that’s quite embarrassing. And I thought I was bad! 😂 Once we went out to eat with my out-of-town uncle from Texas, and he threw a fit about the butter on his steak. I told my mom never again. I’d rather remain peaceful.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ll use the headline of an earlier post “is it just different here?” to answer your question. It is rare that anyone asks for variations to a menu in a restaurant in Europe – the only exception being those who have allergies, and even they don’t have an *expectation* of it being possible. I think that behaviour is very rude. I’m afraid I wouldn’t be hosting again, and I would let it be known why. I get that it’s family and that makes it awkward at best, but it’s all about setting boundaries and firmly defending them. Good luck 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. How mortifying for father to speak like that. I occasionally order a pasta dish without asparagus at a favorite restaurant. It isn’t the end of the world if it comes out with the asparagus—my taste buds never matured enough to like it.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. After a moment I thought the son should not be pressured. If he was on special terms he would have offered to get involved. I think most businesses already do their best to accommodate customers. One memory came back to me when I was pre-dialysis in the 80’s and we visited a Moroccan restaurant in Vancouver. My wife was discussing the menu and each dish with the server who then asked the chef some questions. The chef came to the table and was so kind and gracious. He offered to make me something off the menu and it was so nice. But I really recall how the chef was so kind, we didn’t ask but he offered. I think this is the best way. Explain the situation first.
    In the situation you described it seemed to me that the customers were just difficult and I wonder if they were like that about more than restaurant meals.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Wow! We once used to go out with a couple and the wife could never eat anything on the menu as it was presented. Her husband would take out her epi pen and pound it onto the table when the waiter came to take the order. Yes, she had allergies, but it was such an ordeal for her to go through the menu with the waiter item by item, ingredient by ingredient.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t know about Easier, maybe Wonky in different ways. But it’s definitely difficult to deal with such people. I sometimes wonder at their sense of the privilege they genuinely believe they should have. Which world do they live in???

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m a hugely picky eater for a variety of reasons. Some things I just don’t like, others I cannot eat (so much more so now that I’m getting older). This is absolutely something I know about myself so I always try to find things on the menu that fit what I will and won’t eat, or if I need to make a change it is relatively minor (like ordering salad dressing on the side) but it makes eating out not so fun a lot of times because that isn’t always easy to do. There are restaurants that I have to avoid because I know there isn’t a thing on the menu that I can make work without being ridiculous like the people in your situation. I also know that there is a chance that my change can’t be made. Some restaurants are really good at making changes, other take your order (never telling you you can’t make changes) and make it however they want anyway. Too many times I’ve taken a chance and ended up not being able to eat what I ordered (I also never complain when that happens, I just don’t eat it). So, yes. I am picky, but I do my absolute best to find something I will eat that I don’t have to change or that if I do, the change is really minor and easily done, because my pickiness is my problem to solve, not the restaurant’s.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My big thing is no hard boiled eggs in my ramen or my Cobb salad…and there are things I don’t eat but I avoid them. I would never switch up a style of pasta. The worst thing is I don’t like it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Some of my favorite places are the ones that are customizable by design, where you kind of build your meal from choices presented. It is SO much easier to make everyone happy in those situations as I’m not the only picky eater in my family.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. OMG! We have a friend who is very particular with food orders and has even sent things back. I mean, really, stay at home and cook for yourself or suck it up. And to insinuate that they deserve to have special meals cooked specifically for them? Sorry bud, you’re not that important in the scheme of life. Feel sorry for that waiter. Hope he got a good tip.

    Liked by 1 person

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