April 17, 2006

Down here in Alice's Restaurant

I am sure the Waiter could tell me the answers, but he gets like 500 comments on every post. We went to eat at a chain steakhouse on Saturday. As usual, the restaurant was so cold we nearly froze. I can stand a lot of temperature extremes, so when I am cold it is pretty bad. The poor wife was shivering. When you drop 50 bucks on a meal you should at least be able to enjoy it. The wife complained to the waitress, who responded " I think it is fine". The waitstaff had on jeans and long sleeve shirts. We were not the only table to find it uncomfortable.

I know enough about the restaurant industry to know that turnover is the key to profits. People lingering over cigarettes and coffee to do not pay the bills. The restaurant needs the tables to drink alcohol, eat and LEAVE. A cold establishment helps this goal. The staff and servers are moving, working and keep their body temperatures above those of the patrons, who just sit and poke food into their gaping mouths. I also understand that controlling the temperature in a large building with a changing number of bodies is tough.

I do not understand why the temperature is set to what has to be the mid to low sixties. That is too cold. The cost of energy must outweigh the turnover benefit. This phenomenon is not just this one eatery. I have noticed it in many places lately. Like the trend to small portions on large plates at the trendier dineries, the benefits of room-sized refrigeraters called dining rooms must have been touted in an industry magazine in the last year or so. Give the public a break Mr. Restaurant Owner. We are paying the salaries, the bills, the profits. The customer should be comfortable, not Pedro the busboy.

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