Restaurant discriminates against Taiwanese???


#21

I could easily see the landlord conveniently forgetting to mention that fact when the lease was signed. Taiwanese landlords? C’mon…


#22

Yep, and Chinese letters addressed to the landlord probably just get passed on.


#23

You would think they would have local partners


#24

if that place gets demolished isn’t this as good as a witch hunt? i mean theres about 1000 illegal buildings on my street but none of them are getting demolished. at least this one doesn’t look like it was constructed out of items from the scrap heap.


#25

In light of certain information that was not availed to me at the time of my original post, I’m forced to retract my assertions that it was the sole fault of the resto in question. Mea culpa. The customer was not “in the right”, no matter how this story eventually spins out. I stand only by my logic and reasoning if the story is proven to be accurate.

As we’re seeing in follow-up reports, there is far more to this story than we know.

@Andrew0409 You’re right on all accounts except the gluten allergy thing. I have one very good friend who has Celiac and Crohn’s issues. We’re not sure exactly what his ultimate problem is; we only know that he’s fine as long as he avoids gluten. However, he only eats at home. That’s another story altogether, but the whole “allergy phenomena” is usually about attention. This particular individual wants to be the most special diner in the joint, regardless.

On the other hand, sometimes people get roped into dining out when they’ve made their dietary restrictions perfectly clear prior to the invitation. The response is: “Oh, don’t worry. We’ll tell the chef you can’t have anything with pork.” In reality, it’s those people, the presumptive unintentional enablers who are a problem.

Most high-end chefs I’ve worked for didn’t have a problem with restrictions and allergies. They got pissed when someone came into - a Greek resto, for instance - and ordered something that wasn’t on the menu, like Chicken Kiev or some shit they dreamed up on the way over - their “idea” about what Greek food should be. Every joint I’ve ever worked in had hamburger patties, buns, and French fries in the walk-in freezer, so if you rocked up with your spoiled kid who won’t even look at a menu, they had you covered. It’s the entitled fuckers who come in and say, “I’d like the Greek Salad, but instead of cucumbers and feta, I want arugula and blue cheese. Oh, and I want Ranch dressing on the side.” Who in their right mind wouldn’t be calling this diner a cocksucker?

Now, zero question the server is an idiot - IF HE SAID THAT. We don’t know. Right now, based on what I’ve learned in the meantime, I doubt the server said shit to the customer unless he was trying to cause a problem.

Moreover, food service drones constantly, incessantly bitch about customers. It’s what we do. You can’t get a gig in my hypothetical resto if you don’t have a healthy amount of disdain for the general public coming right out of the box. At least half of all food service backroom talk involves “that stupid cunt on 23 who said the Sean Thackery was corked.”

This is going somewhat off-topic but the reason I like Gordon Ramsey, Hell’s Kitchen, Kitchen Nightmares, et al, is because those programs represent a far better reality of what working in a kitchen and resto is like. I’ve worked for G. Ramsey and Samy Bouzagalo types, and that was long before they became “a thing.” I’ve been called far worse things than a “donkey” by a sous chef, who isn’t even the top dog on the line - and there was nothing I could do about it, except quit. I didn’t. My skin isn’t that thin, and the sous chef had a coke problem, and guess who his supplier was?

Anyway, the only top-down figure in a resto who is NOT bitching about customers is usually the GM (general manager), and accommodation is his job. Even then, you get a few cocktails in the GM at after-hours, and he gonna say some incredible shit.

The main part of Western food and beverage service involves role playing to a certain degree. Very few people can get away with being surly bastards and have a career in the food service industry. There are exceptions, of course. For me, and generally speaking, the lot of my co-drones over the years, once 5:30 p.m. rolled around, I became Mr. Hospitable - the Rock of Section 2. Nothing anybody could do or say would throw me off my game. That’s because my income depended on my diners’ experience. In other words, my night depended exclusively on their night - and ultimately, their generosity. At the ground floor, the server level, that’s never the case in Taipei (or most of Asia). They punch a clock; I roll the dice. And you can give people the best service they’ve ever had and they still gonna leave you 12% on a $1,500 tab. That’s the main difference.

Most of all, my working experience is in the U.S., which is a wildly different beast. Taipei is at least some kind of generational epidemic away from playing in the pros. I’ve had a few good meals around town, but I’ve stopped being disappointed anymore because I expect it to be shit, and it almost always is.


#26

I’d wager it’s about the 3rd or 4th most significant cause of career burnout for FOH staff, they just get done with not being allowed to be in a crap mood every now and then.


#27

@super_lucky that’s what I’m saying, I know people who have celiacs and it’s a real thing. But it’s like 1% of people have it. All I’m saying it’s a fad that causes huge unnecessary problems for the kitchen and servers that people don’t understand. We take any type of allergies seriously and take a lot of precautions from cross containmention and sanitizing the area of cooking if someone says they have any allergies. So when so many people come in and say it you really sucks for everyone and I don’t think people think about the restaurant having to go through all of that, especially if they come in during rush hour and slow everything down.


#28

Well personally I don’t really get the point of telling the chef/other staff that this or that is bad, it feels so entitled. I mean if you don’t like it, just don’t come next time?


#29

Once it gets in the news that’s it’s an illegal building they will be forced to act. Whether by design or on purpose…the restaurant owner is screwed.


#30

so it needs to be news for this to happen? what about using the power of sight? there are an insane amount of illegal…contraptions (can’t exactly call them buildings) around. basically every apartment up to 6 floors high will have them. why does this one earn the right of first place on the illegal buildings list?


#31

There’s no immediate, indignant gratification in that reasonable line of thinking. Some people enjoy being dicks; it validates them, somehow… The resto racket is pretty rife with people who love to complain. To me, the absolute best response to being served a lackluster or bad meal is to not eat it. Nothing says “this sucks” like an entree that’s been pushed around a plate but left mostly intact. Your server should be looking for that. Some kitchen staff look for that - the good ones manage their food waste like aquariums monitor salinity levels n shit. But it goes both ways.

On the other hand, if I’d ever been served an item that look like it just came off the dish room floor, mainly because it had been on the brick mosaic dish room floor less than a minute ago, I might be compelled to ask the nice lady behind the counter at Chik-Fil-A to see about getting another sandwich. There’s a big difference between saying, “Could you ask the chef to give the chicken a few more minutes under the broiler for me?” and “This fuckin’ chicken is raw!” Perhaps it’s a bit too sublime for the average consumer.

Sometimes you open a bad bottle of wine. Sometimes there’s a stray hair in the salad. If consumers want their food to go under a microscope before it leaves the line, they better be prepared to wait a lot longer than they already do.

However, in the case of this story, whether or not the entire thing happened is at best questionable.

So this brings us to the point where we could possibly be saying to a customer, you know what? Just don’t come.

I’m an alcoholic, so I probably shouldn’t be rocking up in bars. Steve is diabetic, so he’s got no reason to post up at the Dairy Queen - unless they offer diabetic options. Tiffany is a vegetarian, so what the fuck is she doing in a Brazilian barbecue joint?

OK, I can still go to bars and socialize and not drink. That’s possible although unlikely. Steve could roll up on Dairy Queen and ask for a Non-Dairy Diabetic Insulin Blizzard, but I think that’s asking a bit much of the crew at DQ. Psst! Go with the ice water, Steve. Now, Tiffany over there at the churrascaria is probably going to choke down some zucchini mix and nibble on olives. She be a’ight. As long as none of us make trouble, we should be welcomed customers.

When the clientele starts dictating the contents of your menu, that’s when it’s time to shut the doors. Pack up. Get out of the business. That doesn’t mean every bar shouldn’t have a case of Budweiser on-site no matter what - they should. You gotta be flexible. You gotta be accommodating. But you also gotta be there to do what you came to do.

At some point, restos are going to start discouraging problematic diners from showing up. And I know that’s discriminatory and maybe even inflammatory, but if you are trying to run a fuckin’ gumbo joint, you can’t be dealing with seafood allergies. Those people should already know better than to show up. Restos in the U.S. have bent over backwards to accommodate myriad contingencies of the average diner. Now that we have phantom, trendy attention-seeking faux allergies to contend with, it make sense to shun their business. “I don’t care how often you come here, your bullshit is not the reason we’re in business.” It might make people think about their true impact on the industry. One or two assholes does not determine the success or failure of a resto, and I don’t care if you go on a Yelp! crusade to “bring them down.” Climb the highest mountain. Badmouth us to the end of time. Just don’t come to my joint anymore.

Unfortunately, I don’t think the original story is about any of this.


#32

That’s different though, this is a whole building.l her is already listed as illegal and now all over the news.
Now they need to be seen to be doing something …


#33

I love complaining, but I wouldn’t bother the staff because that’s like a waste of time.

Unless something real crazy happens, like when there’s a cockroach in the food, but even then I’d only talk to the waiters, not the chef. It just feels too much of a hassle to ask the chef out and tell them things I can easily tell the waiters instead?


#34

Then you’re banking on the server to inform the chef, who is ultimately responsible for the insect-to-plate ratio in the house. Most servers back home gonna make a beeline for the chef anyway - they trained to do that. In Taipei, the average server might not think about it again until they happen to see a cockroach scamper across the sidewalk and think, “Oh yeah, that stupid foreigner.”

In other words, a good chef wants to know if he’s served you ambrosia and/or feces. Either way, if you find shit in your food, you’re not technically complaining; you’re pointing out a really bad aspect of their food operations.


#35

Very sad to hear the restaurant is being threatened with demolition. A case of a bad waiter or chef would blow over pretty quick, even the best restaurants in the world mess up from time to time.

I’m not a lawyer, but I would think if the owner had prior knowledge of a scheduled demolition in June, he would be held liable for damages and costs caused to the restaurant owner who put in a sizable amount of money to decorate the place and would have signed a contract I imagine for a period and with the expectation they would be operating long past June. If they failed to mention the status of the property, the possibility of it being demolished and if they signed a contract for a period of years knowing full well the property was scheduled for demolition in June, to me that sounds criminal. Hope these guys get themselves a good lawyer.


#36

The building was classified as an illegal structure way back in 1999. And now, 18 years later, the building is scheduled for demolition in June, two months after this discrimination story broke. That seems like quite a coincidence.

The city government says there’s no connection, and that the long delay is because there’s such a long list of illegal structures awaiting demolition. Okaaaayyyy.


#37

On the other hand, this story just broke recently, and now we’d have to believe the city government has swung violently into action against a restaurant over an utterly minor personal issue, destroying some apparently guanxi-less landlord’s structure in order to drive them out of their rented space.


#38

18 years to do their job and destroy an illegal building? absolutely nobody should buy that.

whats the lesson learned here? better get some guangxi or just bugger off because one trouble making customer can get your whole restaurant levelled to the ground? as a foreigner it hardly seems worth it when you can get pushed out with so little effort.


#39

Wait, where are we talking about again?


#40

I dunno, sounds like Taiwanese logic to me.