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Friday, March 30, 2012

Feed Me

Wednesday night I was subjected to one my worse dining experiences yet. Well, there was the time about 15 years ago at a Bennigan's when I saw a cockroach scurry past my table. My waitress killed it within a few feet of my plate of food. But back to Wed nite.

All week long I had been looking forward to my meal at Employee's Only. I had recently finished production on three commercials for Frontline Plus. The production company was taking out the entire ad agency team to celebrate a successful production.

Over the past years, I've consumed many ah-mazing cocktails at Employee's Only. I had never eaten one single bite. Who needs food when you have alcohol? After viewing the menu online, I saw some salads and veggie sides. Just to be safe I called the restaurant and asked if I could get a veggie plate for my main.

The response: "No."

Really? Isn't the guest always right? I was just doing the kind thing and giving them the heads up. They already serve veggies. How hard is it to place them all on one plate? I came to discover that this was the impossible mission.

Cut to Wednesday night. Trays of cheeses, patés, and charcuterie were being passed around as I patiently waited for my arugula salad. The waitress appeared midway through the appetizer course to take everyone's main course requests. I re-gave my order for an arugula salad and then the veggie plate as my main. Thirty minutes later plates of sirloin, salmon and pasta were placed in front of each guest.

However, not a single morsel for me. I asked the bus boy if he knew the whereabouts of my salad. Five minutes later it appeared. I dove in to the arugula, fennel and preserved lemon mix. Tasty and just what I needed. Having watched eight others enjoy rounds of apps and main dishes, I was famished and annoyed.

I kept expecting each time the waitress approached for her to place my veggie plate before me. Minutes ticked by. No plate or dish was presented to me. The bus boy appeared again. I asked about my veggie plate. Two minutes later I was brought a small dish of swiss chard. It was either steamed or sautéd. I was hungry and even more annoyed.

Finally, the waitress looked my way. I asked her why it took so long for me to get my appetizer salad and what happened to my veggie plate. She said she thought I wanted them together. Huh? I'm not sure what gave her this impression since I precisely asked for the salad first and the non existent veggie plate second. Needless to say she didn't care. The rest of the party didn't care that they were being happily fed while I wasted away in a state of starvation.

The good part of the meal was that it was free because it wasn't worth paying for.

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