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What are you favour 3 cuisines?

Given Lithuania's geography, I can probably figure that one out. But I'm from Md and currently living in Md again and I'm curious about anyone whos' clearly been exposed to many cuisines listing Md in their top 3. What are your favorite foods that would qualify as "Maryland"?

Jan 25, 2013
staughton in General Topics

"Take it, or we'll throw it"

I lived and worked in restaurants in the Bay Area for nearly a decade and I noticed that many customers would give their doggy-bags to the homeless they passed on their way home. As far as the restaurants go, it's an owner/management decision. I've worked for a few places that not only threw out tons of food, but didn't recycle--and when some of the staff brought this up with management, we got a lot of attitude and nothing was changed. And we rarely if ever gave out freebies to customers at the end of the night.

Still, I've noticed that restaurants always seem to get put through the ringer on issues like this. This is just the tip of the iceberg in the developed world. The amount of paper wasted in offices (still, even with computers) is as bothersome to me as the waste of food. Far more grain rots in silos and grain elevators and harvested produce goes bad waiting for an agreeable swing in the stock market than is thrown out at the end of the night in most restaurants. What about all the grocery stores that throw "expired" food out rather than offer the food at half price?

Oct 02, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Pizza "service" charge in dining room

Never heard of this. I lived in NYC from '99 - '07 and had more than my share of pizza in NY and NJ. Sounds to me like they're just trying to discourage pie-eating in the more formal dining room.

Sep 30, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

An hypothetical: tipping( again)

?!?!?!? SHOW me the restaurant waiter (and NOT a unionized banquet server in a hotel, either) who makes $10.00/hr on top of their tips. I think the OP used the right word in this thread's question with "HYPOTHETICAL". Many of you certainly are building your arguments on some completely unfounded hypotheses.

Sep 27, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

An hypothetical: tipping( again)

Given the attitude of many people posting here, one can be fairly certain some of the homeless we pass were formerly their servers.

Sep 26, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Tipping a Bartender

"Being a straight male..." That's funny. In my experience, it's the straight males who most often bring up a server's attractiveness (especially if the server is a straight female) when discussing how they tip.

Sep 25, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

When the host is late serving the meal - also rude? Is it ok for guests to leave?

I'm howling at "Chew & Screw". Consider it public domain, Kat. I'll be borrowing it, too!

Sep 25, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

DO YOU EAT CAKE OVER THE SINK?

tomatoes/tomato sandwiches
Indian mango/lime pickle (that turmeric is IMPOSSIBLE to deal with when it gets on the counters)
strawberries/peaches/plums, especially the riper ones

Sep 25, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

When (and whether) to follow up on a dinner invitation we've extended to another couple?

I'm with Scooter8. The "just checking" approach works best. Quite honestly, though, EWT, dinner invitations are rare these days, with everyone meeting in restaurants/bars. I wonder if the invited people are stalling because they're considering that they'll have to reciprocate eventually, and maybe they're not feeling up to the task.

Sep 25, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Tipping a Bartender

Reading some of these responses, that range from taking the server's "attractiveness" into consideration when tipping to what they tip in other countries, it's no wonder that there are so many disagreements on this issue.

I don't care what someone looks like (as long as they don't look dangerously unhygienic) or how much they smile or make idle chit-chat. That's not really their job. I do take into consideration their understanding of basic bartender knowledge. I DO tire of young bartenders listing scotches and bourbons as options because they don't have the Crown Royal or Canadian Club I've ordered.

Having bartended myself, I know how to assess a bar and its bartenders and figure out what their capabilities are. I don't request Pisco sours or Pimm's cups in dive bars and I don't expect premium wines by the glass in chain restaurants. Nor do I gripe that the four-star restaurant doesn't carry my favorite cheap beer on tap (you'd be surprised how many people do, before you ask, "Who does?"). I certainly don't ask for or expect "tastes" and "sips" of every other wine on the by-the-glass list. A basic description usually suffices, especially when it comes from someone who actually drinks wine.

That said, I generally tip around 20%, sometimes more, rarely less.

Sep 25, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Tipping a Bartender

I think singlemalt meant "moving people" in a sense. Just different moves. Sometimes involving a pole.

Sep 25, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Tipping a bartender on an absolute, bare minimum, to the drop pour.

And that seems like an easy response from someone who works in customer service but has never worked for tips.

Sep 21, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Tipping a bartender on an absolute, bare minimum, to the drop pour.

Yeah, I've heard many a reason for not tipping over the years. But 99% of the time it's a justification for cheapness, and restaurants/bars are arenas where people are free to get away with it.

Any Marrow Lovers??

And I've never gotten buttery/creamy. Were your marrow bones taken from the udder?

Sep 21, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Any Marrow Lovers??

I am a marrow lover. I still remember the first time I had it, about 20 years ago in a French restaurant in San Francisco. My dining companions weren't as fond of it as I was/am. It's usually served with toast to spread it on. The texture is soft, somewhat fatty, but not gelatinous or chewy like fat can sometimes be. The flavor is somewhere between blood and fat and perhaps some offal/organ meats--but nothing as strong as liver/kidney.

I'm afraid my descriptions are making it sound very unappetizing, but I don't know how else to describe it!! If you're a meat-eater and you enjoy eating or at least trying all parts of an animal, you're bound to enjoy it. If you're more of a picky eater and only eat loin/breast meat, you might want to consider another appetizer! Anyway, have fun!

Sep 21, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Are You Snacking on Anything Right Now?

Sounds fabulous. And makes me miss my Trinidadian friends in NYC.

Sep 21, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Tipping a bartender on an absolute, bare minimum, to the drop pour.

Attitude? The only "attitude" alluded to by the OP (after summing up her looks, which he apparently found relevant to his assessment of her professionally) was the projection that she was "wishing she was clearly somewhere else." Really? He knows that? Perhaps he was mistaking the lack of flirty attention from an attractive woman a little too personally, or more likely, that she had something else on her mind. I once spent an entire night serving people having just been given the information that my mother was in a coma, hundreds of miles away. But I'm sure some clod on the other side of the bar was thinking I thought I was too good for him/her because I wasn't staring dreamily into their eyes and giving them double pours. Regardless, she did her job, and even gave him tastes of various wines before he finally ordered. And NO mention of how busy she was says fairly clearly to me that the OP isn't paying attention to anything but his immediate needs--if, indeed, a glass of wine can be called a need--especially when someone believes 8 oz. is a standard pour, which would be patently absurd pouring Inglenook from a box in Peoria, forget the Upper West Side.

Tipping a bartender on an absolute, bare minimum, to the drop pour.

I bartended in NYC for a while. I wasn't a young blond actress type, but still probably a "terrible, terrible" one, in your book--merely because I was following the rules of my job layed down (and hawkishly observed) by my employer. But, hey, I guess you did the right thing. For a schmuck. Instead of taking it up with management, who are clearly responsible for this sort of thing, you decided to take it out on her tip. You're ignoring the fact that part of that tip goes to other workers at that restaurant who made sure you had a clean glass, among other things. But, hey! YOU felt slighted! That's the important part. And yet you payed the real slighters full price--but conveniently took your displeasure out on the server, thereby saving yourself a few bucks. Rather cowardly, if you ask me. And tipping $1.00 on a $9.00 glass of wine plus tax in NYC is really cheap. And stupid, considering you then took a table with your friend and presumably ordered more things from the same bartender.

What foods do NOT live up to their reputation or hype, in your opinion?

Well, I have an idea they'll be giving strange looks more often after that pitch! I live about an hour and a half south of Balto., and I know where I'll be having lunch next time I'm up there! Thanks.

Sep 20, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Do you eat fortune cookies? Does anyone?

I used to always eat them, but the last 100 or so that I've bitten into have been stale, so it's been years since I finished one. They seemed to take a turn for the worse right about the time they started putting lottery numbers on the fortunes.

But, who would take "all of the fortune cookies" at a shared table? That's the weird part!!

Sep 19, 2012
staughton in General Topics

An hypothetical: tipping( again)

I waited tables for years, and I'll say this: if they ordered four courses and shared, it's likely that the bill was as much or even more than the people who order two inexpensive entrees, which is a much more common phenomenon (and a VERY common M.O. for cheap tippers, btw!). No, people dining in the manner you describe have shown that they're interested in that particular restaurant's endeavors and that they either a.) don't want to stuff themselves, or b.) they can't afford to double the bill. I certainly never expected to be tipped more than the standard 15 - 20%, but I've never met the server who minded being "overtipped". Now, if this couple ordered that way and sat at the table for four hours in a crowded place and the waiter lost the chance to turn that table, THEN they should put more money in. But those people rarely do.

Sep 19, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Two people ordering the same dish; ok?

People should be able to order what they want, of course, but I like some variety on the table in a restaurant and I must plead guilty to your husband's crime. I think we go about it this way because sometimes one person's dish is much better than the other person's, and if you both get something that is not great, well, you get the idea... I rarely want a whole steak or an entire order of something like pasta, so this mandatory sharing takes care of that problem as well.

Sep 19, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

Food Scars - Things you will never eat again.

I don't like funnel cake or the smell--but I think your reaction might have had something to do with whatever amusement park ride you had just taken a spin on!

Sep 19, 2012
staughton in Not About Food

What foods do NOT live up to their reputation or hype, in your opinion?

Hey, neighbor! So, Jerry's on Rt. 4, south of Prince Frederick, or the one in Lanham-Seabrook? I can never bring myself to order soup there (on Rt. 4) with all the great specials, but I will now. Thanks for the recommendation. And speaking of bacon, have you ever had their kale? WOW!!! My sister orders it by the pint for take-out.

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics

What foods do NOT live up to their reputation or hype, in your opinion?

Still, there are a few places (and relatives!) who make a decent Maryland crab soup, which is basically just a tomato-based veg soup (I even use a beef stock base) with crab meat in it. I can't find a bowl of cream of crab soup that doesn't taste like a cross between salty ranch dressing and crab dip with too much sherry in it. Even the places with decent Md. crab soup are making awful cream soup these days.

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Foods that are Unfairly Maligned

I don't know how much red wine Koreans and Japanese are drinking these days, and if you think the majority of Asians eat smaller portions of white rice (or other refined grains) than "we" do, you've clearly not lived/dined with many Asians. And of course developed countries who've been eating pasta/white rice for centuries are now experiencing higher rates of diabetes in the past few decades--because they're eating less fresh produce and more processed food along with it! That doesn't mean that the traditional Japanese, Korean, or Italian diet, loaded with fresh vegetables and fruit and smaller portions of meat and little-to-no dairy is a diabetes-inducing diet because of the refined grains.

Olives and avocados are NOT better sources of fiber than oatmeal or quinoa or brown rice or sweet potatoes or turnips (all starches). Where's your "careful research" to bear out that assertion, btw?

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Foods that are Unfairly Maligned

Refined/polished grains. The health-conscious in the USA would have you believe that every grain of polished rice, every sack of white flour, every box of non-whole wheat pasta is poison. So, why is it that every Asian-born person I've ever met, from Iran to Japan, eats white rice--some EVERY DAY, but they're not all unhealthy? Europeans, especially the French and Italians, eat white bread by the kilo-tonne; their arteries aren't shutting down. I've talked to Japanese and Koreans who say they only time they eat brown rice is when they're ill. Otherwise, they've eaten white rice every day of their lives.

No, it's the going years without eating green vegetables or fresh fruits and shoveling processed foods that makes people unhealthy. You can get your fiber from other sources besides your grain. I'm not saying refined grains are good for you (or that the "enriching" process is without its problems). I just don't buy into this idea that they're all poison.

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics

Foods that are Unfairly Maligned

NOT everything is fried. In fact, my Southern (Virginia) mother rarely fried anything, besides eggs/bacon/etc. a few times a month on a weekend morning back in the 50's-70's. Maybe chicken once a year or eggplant/squash--and the eggplant was for parmigiana. Her food was mostly all boiled and baked and more like traditional English food than like the KFC garbage that everyone thinks defines "Southern food" these days.

And, btw, nonsense like Paula Deen's artery-clogging crock-pot/casserole dishes that are masquerading as "Southern food" are really more Mid-western in origin, and late 20th Century than they are "traditional Southern". My grandmother (b.1894, also Virginia), who lived to be 96 years old and was never ill one day when I knew her for the last 25 years of her life, ate nothing but "Southern food"--rarely any fried food or fast food or casseroles or garbage made with processed barely-qualifying-as-food ingredients. She ate tons of canned greens and beans and plenty of lard, though.

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics

What foods do NOT live up to their reputation or hype, in your opinion?

I'll see your craft beer and raise you a home-made kit-wine. This sort of thing is better left to the pro's.

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics

What foods do NOT live up to their reputation or hype, in your opinion?

I live in Maryland and I've been having the same problem lately with many restaurants' cream of crab soup (NOT to be confused with Maryland crab soup) and the ranch dressing factor. These days I can't find a decent bowl in a restaurant to save my life.

Sep 17, 2012
staughton in General Topics