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Azizeh Barjesteh's Profile

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Looking for B & J's Pumpkin Cheesecake Ice Cream

I found mine about a week or maybe two ago at Pavillions here in Santa Monica. I looked at Vons before that, and they didn't have it. Haven't tried it yet, but good luck !

Where in SF can I buy Orange Flower Water?

I don't live in SF, but any Persian or middle eastern market will have it, next to the rose water. You will also be able to find it at gourmet food stores, often times, but it's far more expensive.

Chinese Restaurants Open on Christmas

I spent Christmas in Chinatown here in LA a couple years ago and the whole section of town was open. All the restaurants, shops, and bakeries.

Dec 21, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

No Dunkin' Donuts in SoCal = crime (moved from LA)

Damn it, the same thing just happened in Vegas too. They're in charge of the cream (which isn't cream, skim or whole milk only.) But at least I got to put my own sugar in this time.

Nov 02, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Chains

Restaurants with "Rules"

I'm pretty much okay with rules like these. I only dislike it when the place treats you as though they are doing you a favor by letting you eat there and you're lucky to be giving them your money. Attitude is everything.

Do People Really Eat Cheese Made with Maggots?

Eh. I don't really have a problem with eating insects, per se. But, I think the revulsion comes from the fact that maggots are typically associated with something rotten or putrid. We're supposed to use our senses to determine if food isn't edible, so eating maggots kinda goes away from that. Now, I know we eat cheese that's laden with mold, but it's easier to disassociate it when it's not wiggling around and laying eggs.

Oct 19, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Ordering Off the Kids' Menu

Depending on the company, it doesn't hurt to ask. I wouldn't try this when I was with a client or on a date... or even at a nicer restaurant. That's just me, though. My only problem with it is that people hate and often wont tolerate being told no. Many restaurant patrons think that just because the restaurant makes it for children or has a certain ingredient, that they can and should do whatever is being asked of them. I've listened to debates between diners and restaurant management over policies and it gets to the point of just being ridiculous. If you want it, ask. If they say no or advise you that it's not a good idea, just be gracious and forget about it.

Oct 19, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Bad Dinner, No Tip

Am I the only one that's annoyed by the people posting just to say the story is fake? Who cares? Write to the editor, complain. Even if the question is fabricated, it's still an opportunity to discuss the subject and learn things. Quit the whining, detectives.

Oct 06, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Bad Dinner, No Tip

If a waiter slammed anything down on my table and laughed at me, I wouldn't tip 10%. The most they would get is one shiny penny. I work as a server, and I know how important tips are. Tips need to be earned, they aren't just given for the privilege of having a server. Sorry, no. Tipping any amount for terrible service is rewarding bad behavior.
If the tips are pooled, why would I be tipping anyone else for the crappy food and service? Even if the food was good and the service awful, in most states kitchen workers aren't legally entitled to tip pools. If there was a particularly helpful busser, I'd tip him directly. If the server has to tip out to other employees at the end of the night, maybe the fact that he'll be paying out of his own pocket due to my lack of tip would teach him to become a better server or find a new job.

Sep 30, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

I Don't Care If She's Family

While working as a server, I'd see parties where one person was rude to me, while the rest sat there quietly, clearly not in agreement with the rude one's behavior. I never thought the other people were rude just because they were with that person. People can say a lot with their eyes and it's usually them begging me to forgive their friend. I've also had it happen where someone in the party would tell the rude person that they were being impolite and they would apologize to me. The rude one would usually look embarrassed and more than once, It happened that they'd apologize to me when I returned to the table the next time. I don't think you need to scold someone, but you certainly can not let a situation get out of hand or let someone be rude to the server inappropriately.
Some people think that talking down to people or being rude to servers makes others think that they know what they're talking about, that they're clearly very refined and this doesn't meet their high standards. So, letting them know it's not okay may do the trick of fixing it.

Sep 18, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Unforbidden Fruit

Asking is the obvious answer. Or, if you have too much fruit, put up a sign on the fence saying, "Please help yourself to the oranges."

My family has a property in San Diego that is un-lived on, but by no means abandoned. We'll soon build a house on it. We call it The Orchard because it has avocado, lemon, limes, nectarines, and a few other fruit bearing trees. My sister and her husband, who live nearby, would visit the orchard several times a week, just to hang out. Often times, they'd find that the trees were robbed blind. Not a single fruit left. The property has a camper on it, hoses, bird feeders, other personal belongings showing that people obviously go there... and a fence! It didn't stop until my sister took custody of my giant dog. Nothing stopped the fruit thieves like a "Beware of the Great Pyrenees" sign. Best alarm system ever.

Sep 10, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Was I rude?

They say the worst etiquette is pointing out other people's bad etiquette, but in this situation, you were somewhat doing him a favor.He really should know that it's a bad practice to pile dishes in front of people. Although, depending on your tone and language, he could've assumed that you were just a weird, particular person and this is some quirk of yours. So, maybe explaining it further or talking to the manager would be good.
As for piling dishes on someone's arm, that's a pretty common practice. It shouldn't happen in a very nice restaurant, but fast-paced, busy restaurants encourage their staff to be as effective as possible.

How long do you linger at the table after you finish eating at a restaurant?

I pretty much always leave within 5 minutes of finishing and paying. I'm probably hyper-aware because I work as a server. One table of campers can ruin your whole night. We're only given 3 tables because we're very focused on service. So, we own our section. If one of those tables wants to sit all night, there goes 1/3 of my income. It has also happened where I've been done with the rest of my tables, we're closed, my side work is done, and I'm stuck waiting for my last table to go home. It definitely sucks, but it all par for the course.
Some people will say things like, "Just tell us when you need this table again!" -But really, there's no tactful way (or way that wont get me fired) to tell someone to get up, there are people waiting. So, I guess if you're really concerned, ask the server if they have other open tables in their section currently. If they say yes, you can relax for a little while longer.

Stealing Bar Glasses

How about use plastic cups until you can afford some glasses? I mean, you can only steal one, maybe two glasses at a time, right? And you'd have to buy the booze that goes in those glasses. So, after 4-5 drinks, you could have just as easily gone and bought a set of glasses at Target.
Or, try a yard sale. Craigslist.

Sep 03, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Waiters Refilling Wineglasses

The problem with asking is that in fine-dining, it is the waiters job to give service that isn't obtrusive. If the table is in the midst of a conversation, it's extremely awkward to interrupt to ask them for anything. The server should help the experience flow, not lead it by the hand. Of course, every table is different, and some want to interact with their waiter every single chance they get, and others can barely tolerate a single question or comment. In general, servers are taught to read body language and to rely on non-verbal cues.

Aug 24, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

"Best" Costco Cheese Selection

I was just at the one near me in Marina Del Rey (or Culver City technically) and they had a new section for cheeses. I picked up some English Cotswold for about 1/2 of what I usually pay at Bristol Farms, and it was in a air sealed package instead of just the plastic wrap that tends to let the cheese mold quickly.

Absolut LA vodka--where is it?

Beverage Warehouse in Culver City looks to have it.

you can do a search, and it came up.

Amaretto Syrup

I would check Cost Plus, as they have a large variety of those coffee syrups, as well as Surfas in Culver City, if not too far.

Mexican Coca Cola Alert

Yep. Glacier has em. Dublin Dr Pepper too (which is all I care about.)

I also saw them last night at Joe's Pizza (individually) in Santa Monica. As well as by the case at Beverage Warehouse in Culver City.

Dabbing on some makeup at the dinner table...

From the etiquette I've read, lipstick or lipgloss is fine as long as you can do it without a mirror. If you need a mirror, you go to the bathroom.

It's pretty rude to whip out a mirror and stare at yourself while at a dinner table with other people.

Breast Practices

Dotrat, there's a huge difference in disliking something and working to ban it. I am not in the latter group.

But, apparently anyone that is uncomfortable with it should just get over it. I've also noticed that the pro public feeders are the ones calling names and making accusations about the anti public feeders character. We don't think it's tasteful? We're probably communists, too.

All of my statements are "I" statements. I never told anyone what to do with themselves. I, personally, do not like it. This is an opinion board, no social or political issues are going to be solved here. The nursing mothers are more focused on what everyone else needs to do. "You need to get over it" or "You need to grow up!"

Aug 10, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Breast Practices

It's funny to me that anyone who could be considered squeamish or even prude is a misogynistic woman hater. Funny, I'm a woman, and in the truest sense of the word, a feminist. I think women should do whatever the hell they want. Be a brain surgeon, be a stay at home mom, that's your right. Both deserve respect. Just because I don't want to see your nipple, its secretions, or a child spit up doesn't mean I hate women. It's a preference. And if you prefer to not stay at home with your baby that needs to be breast fed, that's your right. Just like it's my right to think it's tasteless. You can think I'm wrong, I can think you're wrong. Telling those of us that don't like it to grow up is just ridiculous. You may think your child is the most important person on the planet, but not everyone agrees. So, give it a rest and stop the name calling.

Aug 09, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

"What is wrong with you... have you no tastebuds?"

I just entertained a girl like that. She came along with a friend for a weekend visit. She only likes chicken, or well done steak. Her normal dinners are drive thru fare. I'm not a food snob, but man, it just really grossed me out. She doesn't like vegetables, rarely eats fruit. Of course, she's overweight and has bad skin. I just thought about what a turnoff it would be to date someone like that. I couldn't do it, no matter how great they were. My friend, on the other hand is very adventurous, so I had to find places with a good mix of things. It was fine for a weekend, but not as a regular event.
My boyfriend is slightly picky. He's not a fish person at all, but he'll happily accompany me to sushi. He'll get a simply shrimp roll or some teriyaki and tempura. And he never complains. It's the complaining and sour faces that ruin a meal.

Salad in Santa Monica

I also like CCC a lot. Their chicken is pretty bland, though. I only go for their salads, and the veggies + dressing make up for it.

westside chinese food

I like Fu's Palace. But, we only really go there when I want sizzling rice soup, which is somewhat hard to find.

The food is pretty typical Americanized chinese food. I think it's good, but not great, from what I've had. I may need to learn which dishes are their best. The service is always friendly, they speak english, take credit cards, and I'll probably keep going back unless I find something better, closer to Santa Monica.

Breast Practices

I'm pretty queasy when it comes to bodily fluids. Baby vomit, breast milk, poop.... doesn't matter how cute their parents think it is, it grosses me out.

Yes, I think it's rude for a woman to just whip out her boob and feed her kid in a restaurant. But, when I can tell they are being discrete (the nursing blankets, etc.) it really doesn't bug me. Probably because I don't see the actual process. I don't know if breast milk has a smell, but the idea makes me gag. The vomit that often ensues after a baby eats is enough to ensure I wont be finishing my meal.

The definition of being rude is having no regard for your company or other people. So, even if you think they should get over it because the baby is just eating, or because it's the best way to meet his nutritional needs, doesn't mean you're not rude. So, just be discrete. That doesn't mean you have to go sit in a bathroom stall. But, realize that people have queasier stomachs, different religious views about nudity, or simply have no desire to see what you've got going on under your blouse.

And to those who said that the patrons at restaurant commended them, so everyone must love it...that's pretty inaccurate. I don't like it, but I wont walk up to you and say something rude or try to ruin your day by being a jerk.

Aug 06, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

We are only having drinks, but you don't want our business

People here are assuming that everyone is as courteous as we are. We're on a board that focuses on food/restaurants, so we know the rules and norms. Most people do not. So, while we may only have drinks, not linger without ordering something new, and tip generously, many wont. Many people will order 1 drink each, nurse it, and need refills of free water. If there is free bread to be had, they may want that too.
Where I work, we have a 3 table section. We're very focused on customer service, hence the small section. On any given night, having 1 or 2 tables of campers can cut your income in half. Rarely, and I mean RARELY do people say, "Thank you letting us hold this table so long" and tip you to offset the time. In a year and a half it's happened to me twice. Maybe three times. We have bar tables, and while the restaurant has people waiting, the bar tables are for dining only. It simply isn't fair to the diners who are standing around hungry and want dinner, nor is it fair to a server for lost a 4-top to a $22 check. Sure, we can take the attitude that a customer has the right to order whatever they want, but servers losing money consistently will result in high turnover. No one really benefits from that.
Also, some restaurants do not want to encourage a party atmosphere. It's a restaurant, not a bar. The bar is there to compliment the menu. If it's a place with a margarita machine, it's another story.
Once again, this rule is only in place when we are on a wait. If the place is empty and there isn't hungry people lingering in the lobby, we encourage people to sit where they want, order what they want, take their time. I see both sides here.

Too Poor for Drinks

If you're going to have a tequila tasting party, you really should provide some food. Or arrange for other people to bring food. Sampling tequila on an empty stomach isn't a great idea.

Jul 30, 2008
Azizeh Barjesteh in Features

Ripper hot dogs???

Yeah, sorry. I just copied it wrong. Teach me to do things by hand instead of cut and paste :)

Ripper hot dogs???

There's a new place called Fab Hot Dogs in Reseda
6747 Tampa Avenue
Reseda CA 91335

And they, very proudly, serve Rippers. I haven't had one, so I can't attest to anything other than they have 'em.