Western Restaurants: Dishes never come out at once

Has this been discussed before? Do the western restaurants you frequent have dishes come out half an hour after your dining pal’s? It happens to us all the time and it is such a problem especially when we dine with kids that we should probably call ahead with our order before we arrive!

Never happens in Chinese restaurants. Never happens at chains ie. Chili’s because their food is packaged and warmed up, but all the western style restaurants always, without fail, dishes never arrive together so you are either waiting for your partner’s dish for half an hour, or you eat first.

What is going on in the kitchens here? Are all the cooks just not experienced? There is something fundamentally wrong with this system. Is one cook assigned to one whole table’s order? Don’t they anticipate what to prepare beforehand? Like seriously. :doh:

[quote=“914”]Has this been discussed before? Do the western restaurants you frequent have dishes come out half an hour after your dining pal’s? It happens to us all the time and it is such a problem especially when we dine with kids that we should probably call ahead with our order before we arrive!

Never happens in Chinese restaurants. Never happens at chains ie. Chili’s because their food is packaged and warmed up, but all the western style restaurants always, without fail, dishes never arrive together so you are either waiting for your partner’s dish for half an hour, or you eat first.

What is going on in the kitchens here? Are all the cooks just not experienced? There is something fundamentally wrong with this system. Is one cook assigned to one whole table’s order? Don’t they anticipate what to prepare beforehand? Like seriously. :doh:[/quote]

It is ironic,that I have a problem with Restaurants here,bringing all the Food at once !. Inevitably I am watching my Main course go cold,whilst still finishing my Soup.
Irritating,when they take finished plates away,before the others have finished also. Timing does seem completely wrong,I have to agree,with Meal deliveries here.
No doubt the answer will be,“That’s how we do it in Taiwan”. Strange ,when a lot of the University Courses are taught by Foreign chefs.
Maybe Popfly can enlighten us?.

Happens to me even at Chili’s (maybe not as bad). Happens to me at Chinese or non-Western type food places (maybe not as bad). I think it comes down to chefs and servers not really giving a living damn when you get your food. Chabuduo! If you don’t like it, oops, oh well, we still charged your foreign ass a 10% service fee. Bu hao yi si 喔!

It’s actually the normal way to serve Chinese food. How can you say it never happens at Chinese restaurants?
The reason for it is they believe that the food should come out as fresh and hot as possible and of course Chinese style dining often involves multiple shared courses. The other reason is you don’t have to activate your brains ‘planning’ and ‘organisational’ module, which seems to tax Taiwanese people tremendously :slight_smile:.

It can annoy me too , either when the wait is too long between dishes or when everything suddenly comes out at once like Shiadoa mentioned.

We don’t eat out at Chinese restaurants enough that I notice it. But western eateries most definitely. If we order salad as a main, I would say that is my main course yet still, it comes way ahead of everything else. I would love to see what is going on in the kitchen that my salad can come out at 5.45 and the mac n cheese at 6.21. And it is not even that busy.

The thing is this happens at every place. And we like to wait for everyone’s food to arrive before eating, which means food is cold already.

Oy!

We have two very young children so as long as they get something to eat first that’s the main thing, otherwise all hell breaks loose!

To serve everyone’s dishes at the same time requires the use of heating lamps – which means some greedy, tightwad laoban will have to dig into his pocket.

Not gonna happen :no-no:

No, to serve everyone’s dish at the same time requires a skilled chef who can anticipate the finish times of all the dishes and start them in the correct staggered order so that they’re all ready for plating at the same time. There’s no need for heating lamps (and they suck: they dry the food out).

Of course, that’s impossible in a kitchen with only one burner, like so many in Taiwan.

This is something that has always perturbed me as well. I know that our restaurant had trouble in the early days of getting this idea across to the kitchen. Now it is much better. And being on the inside now, I can unequivocally say that it is not always the kitchen’s fault. We have handy “hold”, “rush” and “together” keys on our POS. The server should let the kitchen know the timing and we have been training our servers to do just that. We have an excellent KM working the pass and if he is given the proper info, the mains will come out together.

Shiadiaoh, did Fred’s and your steaks follow too quickly on the heels of your soup and salad? The avocado salad/potato mix-up was all on me as I didn’t tell the kitchen your request (meant to, but didn’t :blush: ), but as far as I recall, the timing went perfectly, nu? Especially considering Alan had tacos (5 minutes to make) and you and Fred had steaks (at least 10 minutes). Please let me know if I am misremembering this. It was pretty busy.

The person who controls the flow of dishes in a good restaurant is called the expediter. He acts as the control valve between the kitchen and the waiters.
A good expediter is worth his weight in beer , cocktails and left over pan seared tuna.

I was that expediter once (queue violin music). Fire table 6 mains cod and steak!

Considering Taiwan barely has waiters, I think expediters are going to be a big ask!

[quote=“headhonchoII”]The other reason is you don’t have to activate your brains ‘planning’ and ‘organisational’ module, which seems to tax Taiwanese people tremendously :slight_smile:.
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I truly love this :bravo: