I know the meat jerky you mean but if you cannot find it in a decent chinese supermarket then I have a feeling meat products are no longer allowed to be exported outside Asia. There are many classic meaty treats, and tin stuff I grew up on that are no longer available here even though its still sold in Asia. Could be wrong though. Google and find out for sure.
Have just returned from a meal out at a Chinese Restaurant in Central London. I asked the waitress why there is a widespread practice of double-tip requesting. She explained that the included service charge may or may not contribute to her wages, she is not sure. But the extra gratuity goes directly to the waiting staff. This does all fall into place, as the double-tip trick started pretty much the same time as when restaurants started including service charge, here in the UK anyway. Just thought I'd share that with you all.
The last 2 posts made some very interesting observations and has got me really thinking. Hot milk definitely tastes milkier than cold milk, and room temperature cheese is more cheesy than when cold. I'm beginning to think that maybe I have got it wrong all these years and the true taste of butter really is at room temperature. But hang on... No, cold butter definitely has a more intense fatty flavour. I'm arguing against myself now, this is bad.
Does anybody know why butter from the fridge tastes better than at room temperature? I love simple bread and butter. I always keep my butter out as its far easier to spread than cold butter from the fridge, but the taste is inferior. My life is hell.
I just want to say that the credit card tip line is not in usage here in the UK (at least I think not). I have been to the states and can totally understand that it is a result of the machines and the slips that come from the bank as you say Hilltowner, and not a sharp practice of the restaurant. However, what gets me though is that here in the UK the waiter actively requests a gratuity via the card terminal. It's always a tricky and embarrassing situation to be placed in, as pressing the NO button always makes yourself feel/look cheap, as well as to point out that service charge was already included. And I don't ever have the energy after a meal to battle having the service charge removed just so I can tip the waiter. What I do now is pre-empt. When the waiter comes with the card terminal I simply ask if the bill has service included and that always puts a stop to it.
My family and I eat in Chinese restaurants in London often and find that we are constantly requested for gratuity on top of the included service charge when paying by card. Some restaurants even hide the fact they have included service charge, and ask for gratuity when they present you with the card-terminal. It really seems to be across the board and we never encounter this at anything other than Chinese restaurants. It is very underhand and you could easily end up paying the 12.5% plus 10% tip. Is this even legal?