Monday, November 2, 2009


Sydney's got a GREAT restaurant scene and my friends can attest that these words mean a lot coming from my mouth. When you grow up in New Orleans, it's inevitable to become a food snob. Just thinking about dressed po-boys and crawfish etouffee at the Galley, Jacq-imo's rabbit tenderloin, and Galatoire's crabmeat au gratin makes me homesick. And even if you don't love heavy, rich food, the service spoils you so that you can make rash decisions (like choose not to frequent a restaurant for 20 years if say, a waitress over pours your sweet tea and you have to mix the drink again to get your sugar:tea ratio just as you would like. I may be related to one such person.)

Although the food is great here, the service isn't always set to the same standard as tipping is optional. I found it very difficult when I first arrived to get a straight answer on how much to tip -- "It depends on the service," or "however much you like." This was frustrating as both a customer and a waitress. And it begged the question -- how much does tipping count? Because Americans are very prone here to overcompensate for their 'American-ness.'

For example, I was at brunch with two American friends, a girlfriend visiting from Denver and a girl that recently moved to Sydney from Jackson Hole. We ordered shortly after sitting down. Only after an hour of salivating over other tables' meals, mumbling under our breaths whilst trying to make light of our hunger pangs, and dealing with an absent and unapologetic server, did we confront him about our lost food. Indeed it was lost, he had forgotten our order which he haphazardly admitted. He continued to put off our inquiries and kept over-promising the food delivery which took roughly another half hour. We had already threatened to leave at that point -- really, our food was already being spit at in the kitchen so what did we have to lose? -- but, we continued to wait somewhat patiently and joke with the waiter so not to be perceived as 'those obnoxious Americans.' He didn't get a tip from us, but in the end we waited an hour and a half for eggs and toast without calling a manager or throwing a fit. Job well done, some might say. Or maybe this whinging online is just my way of showing my true 'American-ness.'

1 comment:

Megan Medo said...

ok i have emailed you every which way and still no response. Im trying your blog now, and then I will move on to facebook.