Serve Notice

You know what really grinds my gears??? In my many years of being a line cook and chef, I have noticed that most servers fit into four categories. Those categories you ask? Apparently I like lists now. They are as follows:

  • The Modifier: For the modifier, it is physically impossible to ring in any food without a paragraph on each ticket. No onions, no garlic, SOS, gluten free, shellfish allergy, mammal allergy, blah blah. Can it be split? Blah blah. Rather than spend a half an hour typing in a hundred modifiers, just type see server. But once I have decoded whatever changes they have made to the menu, it takes 10 minutes for them to come back to the kitchen to ask me if that was okay. Better late than never right? It always makes me thrilled when a server comes back and asks me ahead of time rather than ringing it in with no questions asked; makes it so much easier for both sides. We’re all on the same team right?
  • The Question Asker: The question asker always is similar to the modifier, but always wants to know “Can we do this…insert whatever change to the menu.” Can the guest get the chicken, but over the flounder set up, and the sauce from the gnocchi? Sure, you can do whatever you want. No matter what dish is on the menu, even it has been on there for 10 years, the question asker is still unsure about what ingredients are in it. Are there tomatoes in the marinara? Is there gluten in the pizza dough? Can the Bolognese be vegan? You get the idea.
  • The Who Gives a Fuck: They are the longest tenured server. They have been there forever, know all there is to know about the menu, the restaurant, the cooks, etc. They are chill and arrogant, and all the guests love him/her. This is the server that all the regulars ask for. This is also the server who will say no to guests who are first timers or amateurs, but will bend the rules for regulars. The who gives a fuck is so popular with the guest that they can pretty much do whatever they want, like never run food. Sometimes I’ll see a server and have no idea they have been working because they haven’t been in the kitchen all night. Where have they been? I know they haven’t been doing side work. Duh.
  • Weeded City: No one likes being in the weeds. It sucks. As a chef it feels like you are drowning and there is no light at the end of the tunnel. But once you finally get out there is no better feeling in the world. Well, maybe sitting down after you shift for a beverage. Anyway, there is always one server who is always in the weeds. The phrase “on the fly” is commonly associated with this server. You forgot to ring in the entrees? On the fly. The guest ordered the steak, not the salmon? On the fly. Can you run food? Nope, have to reset the table because the entrees are dying in the window. This is the same person who forgot the guest had an allergy as we are plating up their entrees. You guessed it, on the fly.

Enough gear grinding, the horse is already dead. I do appreciate all the shit servers have to deal with. It’s a tough job and I couldn’t do my job without them and their hard work. I’m sure there are million things that grind their gears about the kitchen; cooks who have blogs for one obviously. Tip your servers! Cheers foodies!



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