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Showing posts from June, 2013

The Bitter Bistro Podcast 105

The new podcast is up!  Reservations included Beth Scherr Haggerty, and guest co-host Meredith Green.  We discussed how to get better service in a restaurant/bar, guest pooping and peeing in public, and another edition of the "LA Yelp Diaries."



Until next time... Server's don't pay their rent with compliments.

"Bitter.  Party of 1?  Your table is ready."

The Bitter Bistro

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Kryptonian Old Men

I've never understood why "older" people always think that the music is too loud, but yet, they always yell "WHAT!" whenever I am talking to them face-to-face.  It must be a case of very selective hearing, or a matter of habit.  But nonetheless, it is humorous whenever it happens.  I find most of the antics that "older" people do are funny, and unfiltered.  And yes, I am putting this demographic in quotes because I don't want to just say old people, or worse yet, old bags, and piss off a good portion of my readers.

On a recent shift, my section was filled with an "older" clientele.  It reminded me when I used to work at The Gardens on Glendon in Westwood, CA.  The owners, Marilyn and Harry Lewis, used to own all of the Hamburger Hamlet around Los Angeles.  The Gardens (former Hamlet Gardens) was their fine dining experience.  That was back in the day.  But by the time I started working there, it had become a mess hall at a convalescent…

The Mark Wahlberg Experience

I have many stories of waiting on celebrities.  This one happened back in 2001.  I was bartending at the Beverly Hills Hotel and Bungalows.

I have served them all.  I have attended some of the best celebrity-studded parties not because I was invited to them, but because I was clocked in.  Some celebrities treat the wait staff horribly, while others seem to give you a chance.  This time it happened at Ozzy Osbourne’s birthday party.  It was his fiftieth, (I believe,) and was set in The Crystal Ballroom at The Beverly Hills Hotel. 
This ballroom is beyond big.  It has a huge staircase that winds down into a giant lobby area with a main oak-half-horseshoe bar.  The place was covered from corner to corner with glass-cross coffins all lined with candles.  I mean, if you are one of the biggest rockers in the world, that apparently is the decoration of choice.  And it worked! 
Everybody was at this party.  Rockstars, actors, wannabes, you name it.  Rob Zombie was hanging out at my bar for m…

Check Your Coat Before You Wreck Your Coat

Restaurants nowadays have been streamlined and simplified as far as decor and cuisine, but some things that we used to have are now no longer, like the coat check.  Another one of my favorite bloggers, The Bitchy Waiter, also wrote something similar to this, Does Anyone Still Wear A Hat?, and the answer--sadly--to all of these questions is quite simply, no!

When I think of a coat-check girl, I think of that scene from The Devil Wears Prada where Meryl Streep keeps dumping her coats and bags on the desk of the "new girl," like she was some hallway closet that never gets cleaned out.  I am certain some dining establishments still employ such girls, (any maybe even guys,) but they have quickly died out like Lindsey Lohan's career.  Too soon?

"Can you check mine and my wife's coat for me? a gentleman asked me one night.

"Unfortunately, we don't have a coat-check sir," I replied.

"Why not?"

Because it's not New York's Russian Tea Room…

Customer Quotes

They say it, (the customers,) and sometimes I can't believe it.  But these are words that came from the mouths of human beings that sat it my section while I was clocked in.

It's been awhile, but it's time again to list some ACTUAL customer quotes and then of course followed by my (smart - ass) answer that I would have said, if we lived in a perfect world.

"I would like my Lamb rare, but pink."
If a chef could cook a piece of meat rare and got it to come out looking pink, then that chef would be a pioneer. If you order something rare, you had better like the color red, because that's what you are going to get, bloody red.

"Do your salads have any greens in them?"

Are you friends with the pink-rare-Lamb lady?  How long have you been on this planet and not seen some kind of salad that didn't have greens in it?  Yes, I know of some salads that don't have greens.  For example, the caprese salad.  Which traditionally is buffalo mozzarella and h…