Dish of the Day: The importance of brunch
When choosing a place to eat out at, there are a few key factors that can play a huge part in your decision: iconic dishes that you’ve been dying to try, the chef and the cuisine style among others of course. I love Zucca because their pasta is simple yet well cooked and I love the veal chop. I’ll eat anything at L’Anima because Francesco and his team are so bloody good, and if I want Chinese, Royal China never disappoints. Do I mess with their food? Do I ask for this meat but with that garnish? No. Do I ask for all of our food to be cut into 3 because we all want to try? Definitely not.
For years now I’ve been wondering why, at breakfast or brunch times, people tend to not be interested in the menu on offer, and feel totally fine with making their own. When a dish has an egg on it on our evening menu, people are fine to try it how I like to cook it, come breakfast? No, they spend a good 10 minutes articulating exactly how we should be doing it, and that when we cook the sausage, if you could burn one side, the slice up that would be great. Now, it’s all about hospitality, I know, I‘ve read the books, but there must be a line, or where will it stop?
If this attitude infiltrates lunch and dinner we are all truly screwed, and we may as well just have a list of ingredients rather than a menu. I’m not only referring to Duck and Waffle, it’s in many places I’ve worked and my friends’ places too. It’s a tough industry and many people feel pressured to jump through these hoops out of fear of loosing a customer, or, god forbid, the rage release on Trip Advisor. The funny twist is all this time spent explaining how they want their breakfast cooked, means the waiter isn’t attending to other tables, and the knock on effect? We get complaints about wait times on ordering -you’re hurting yourselves people.
The breakfast thing has become the norm, ingredients being subbed left right and centre, but I just want to understand why people are happy to be so forthright in their likes and dislikes in the AM yet are reasonably well behaved in the PM?
One thing I am struggling to deal with is the constant requests for food to be cut up. I’m not talking about filleting a whole sea bass encased in a salt crust, I mean a bread will come back to the kitchen, and the normal: “Don’t say it’s not cooked” expression on the poor chef’s face. When the waiter explains, “oh it’s fine, they’d just like it cut into 4’, that is enough to make me want to kill. I’m serious.
I’m not a religious person, but if its good enough for Jesus – “While they were eating, Jesus took a loaf of bread and blessed it. Then he broke it in pieces and handed it to the disciples, saying, “‘Take this and eat it. This is my body.’”
How can one not cut their own food? We are not a formal, stuffy restaurant, hell; you don’t even need cutlery to do it. I was asked last week to divide the poached egg on a crab benedict into 3. An egg covered in hollandaise, its never going to work, it’ll look like a car crash and will totally ruin the integrity of the dish. Take a bite and pass it on, man. It’s only food after all…Tagged in: breakfast, brunch
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