May 2011 Blog Posts (60)


Operator
BECAUSE Pt. 2: Beatles, Customer Service & Biz, Oh My!

I believe that everyone should work as a waiter at one point in their life.

Not because the money is pretty darn good or because you get one shift drink that can turn into two or three if you are good chums with the bartender. Rather, they should become a waiter to learn the true value of great customer service and its rewards.

It worked for me and I can say, with no ego but…

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Added by Ty Sullivan on May 31, 2011 at 7:30pm — 3 Comments

2011 NRA Show attracted 58,000

The following is re-posted from FLOORED, the NRA show blog.

 

The 2011 National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show, held May 21-24 at Chicago’s McCormick Place, and International Wine, Spirits and Beer Event (IWSB), held in conjunction…

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Added by Michael L. Atkinson on May 31, 2011 at 1:59pm — 1 Comment

Chicago Rising Star Chefs & Pork Carpaccio

Online culinary mag StarChefs feted its pick of Chicago's rising star chefs at a tasteful gala on Monday, May 23. The event took place at the beautiful Fairmont Hotel Chicago and hosted by executive chef Brad Parsons and Beverly Kim Clark, chef de cuisine at Aria. Chef Clark's Buttermilk Bleu Cheese Semifreddo with Port Foam and Five-spice Walnuts was a sweet-savory delight, served in a miniature ice cream cone.

 …

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Added by Joseph D'Alessandro on May 31, 2011 at 11:30am — 1 Comment


Non-Operator
Blowing Up Age Old Paradigms

 

 

Remember when “shifting paradigms” was the buzz phrase back in the 90’s?  It became “marketing speak” and just like any great phrase it got used and abused and eventually lost its meaning.  I’m bringing it back for this blog because quite honestly I can’t think of a better way to communicate my point. 

 

Shifting a paradigm is described by Wikipedia as follows:

 …

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Added by Bill Campion on May 31, 2011 at 8:39am — 6 Comments

When is a Chef’s Knife Not a Screwdriver?

Of all the issues that one can single out for criticism in a ‘professional’ kitchen, the topic that irks me the most is the misuse of equipment.  I’m not talking about the occasional sheet pan drafted into use as a deep fryer cover; it’s the wholesale misapplication and underutilization of the tools of the trade that gets to me. 

 

Rolling-pin-tenderizer-users aside, who’s responsible for (not) training people this way?

 

I won’t mention the patently dangerous,…

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Added by Joe Ferri on May 31, 2011 at 3:36am — No Comments

Staff Morale

Currently, I'm working FOH in a busy restaurant with a small service staff. We had about 7 full time servers and the servers really own the floor. Management is helpful but the pooled house selects servers as the top of the food chain.

 

My question / concern is with staff morale. This past Saturday night, management seemed to be on a warpath with the waitstaff. Forgive my bias, but I don't think we do a bad job. We were nominated best new restaurant in the NE b James Beard…

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Added by Brandon M. Roderick on May 29, 2011 at 9:53pm — 5 Comments

Around the World: One Wine at a Time

By Kim Marshall-Volk



Photo By Hukutka



An evening of sampling the best wines and cheeses from around the world - sans jet lag, layovers and lost luggage - sounds delightful, right? Welcome to Bottlenotes.com's "Around the World in 80 Sips" events.



Bottlenotes.com 80 Sips events bring together young professionals interested in wine with some of the world's best bottles in a highly social, interactive setting. Founded by Alyssa Rapp, who was once named one of "30 under 30"… Continue

Added by Magazine BLU on May 26, 2011 at 9:09pm — No Comments

Dublin: Brogue, Brews & Beyond

Dublin Docklands at Twilight with CHQ and Samuel Beckett Bridge | Photo By Tony Pleavin | Courtesy Dublin Tourism



By Rebekkah Adams

 

The call of Ireland is one that attracts many over the ocean, whether that call beckons for enjoyment of the country's history, culture, libations, scenery or cheeky humor. For the independent traveler wanting to really understand the Emerald Isle, Dublin is the city to include on your itinerary. As part of a short vacation, long weekend getaway, or business trip, your time in Dublin provides an easy opportunity to see…

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Added by Magazine BLU on May 26, 2011 at 9:07pm — No Comments

Austin's Famed Food Truck Scene

Photo By Daina Falk



Lately, it seems like we're all about the fine wining and dining experience. But as a posh professional in high demand, you're often pressed for time and have to resort to that sin of all sins: fast food. Fear not, when in or traveling to Austin, let that fair Texas city's famed trailer cuisine rescue you from culinary mediocrity. Who knew fast could be so delicious...or naughty?

Love Balls Bus

How much do we love Love Balls? Enough to avoid… Continue

Added by Magazine BLU on May 26, 2011 at 9:00pm — No Comments

Sandwiches to Love





By Lena Pressesky

 

One of my favorite things to do in spring is picnicking. I've taken sandwiches everywhere from scenic mountain tops to riversides to local parks, and now that the sun is here to stay for a while, I'm constantly looking for new sandwich recipes, especially ones that will survive a car ride or a short hike.



Picnicking is a great…

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Added by Magazine BLU on May 26, 2011 at 9:00pm — No Comments

#NRAShow - 2011 perspective

I am not sure what the final attendee count was, but my guess is more than last year and far less than 2008, when attendance was close to 55,000 over the four days. Like most things that occurred before 2008, NRA's annual event is what it is, rather than what was. 

Attitude is what I tend to focus on most. Because I network and communicate and listen to what people are saying, my sense is that this year, the general attitude was great. Industry stakeholders were engaged and willing to…

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Added by Michael L. Atkinson on May 26, 2011 at 12:17pm — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Vacation Pictures

I’ll acknowledge up front that subjecting non-participants to vacation pictures puts a strain on the strongest and healthiest relationships -- there’s no way the one who wasn’t there can appreciate the full context, although a skillful photographer can at least convey some of the beauty or exotic features of a destination.  I’m decidedly NOT a skillful photographer, so I’ll spare you the amateurish snaps.…

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Added by Rod Guinn on May 26, 2011 at 3:30am — 2 Comments


Non-Operator
Improve Restaurant Customer Service - Provide Proper Floor Diagrams & Table Numbering

It is essential to post proper floor diagrams with position points in strategic areas of a restaurant in order to provide excellent dining room service. You cannot rely on the fact that the floor diagrams are in the computer system either.

Case in point #1: What happens when a new waiter, carrying 3 hot pasta plates, walks from the kitchen into a busy dining room alone and cannot distinguish which is the correct table where the food must…

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Added by Richard Saporito on May 25, 2011 at 1:23am — 1 Comment

Extorting low wages in exchange for tips.

How much does a waiter deserve to be paid? $10.00 an hour? $15.00 an hour? More?

 

The truth of the matter is is doesn't matter. Restaurant owners are refusing to hire waiters unless they agree to work for the lowest wages paid any workers in this country. Waiters are accepting these low paying jobs for one reason, and one reason alone. They want the opportunity to receive tips from the public. The public doesn't tip everyone in this country. If you want a job where you can…

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Added by George on May 24, 2011 at 5:21pm — 3 Comments


Non-Operator
Before They Walk in the Door: The Importance of Interior and Exterior Photography

Guest Post by Catherine Murray

of Photo Kitchen

 

Does your website have a virtual tour? Well,…

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Added by Barry Chandler on May 21, 2011 at 6:57am — No Comments

Open discussion, the restaurant community and the old guard of restaurant marketing

It happened to me today.  I've been 86'd from a LinkedIn group focusing on independent restaurant marketing.   It's probably been coming for a long time though. 

In my efforts since beginning in online and social marketing, I've always approached the question with glasses tinted in ROI.  I've always…

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Added by Steven Groves on May 20, 2011 at 4:27pm — No Comments

Wake up Parents! this Common Drink is Loaded with High Fructose Corn Syrup.m4v





This is the most common drink for kids at restaurants. Chef Marcus Guiliano tells you how to get a healthier version of this drink.



Marcus Guiliano is the chef & owner of Aroma Thyme Bistro located in the bountiful Hudson Valley of New York. Chef Guiliano has been an advocate for over 10 years on healthy, sustainable, local & real food. He found his mission in cooking when he reversed over a handful of medical conditions including 28 years of…

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Added by Marcus Guiliano on May 20, 2011 at 12:00pm — 1 Comment

The Dirty Word in the Seafood Industry, By-Catch

 

What is by-catch and how can you avoid it.



Marcus Guiliano is the chef & owner of Aroma Thyme Bistro located in the bountiful Hudson Valley of New York. Chef Guiliano has been an advocate for over 10 years on healthy, sustainable, local & real food. He found his mission in cooking when he reversed over a handful of medical conditions including 28 years of asthma. For more information visit…

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Added by Marcus Guiliano on May 20, 2011 at 11:58am — No Comments

Organic Veal? Is there such a thing?





Chefs are famous for telling customers anything but the truth. Her is just one more example of a restaurant stretching the truth. And they get mad when I ask questions about the so-called organic veal they are selling.



Marcus Guiliano is the chef & owner of Aroma Thyme Bistro located in the bountiful Hudson Valley of New York. Chef Guiliano has been an advocate for over 10 years on healthy, sustainable, local & real food. He found his mission in… Continue

Added by Marcus Guiliano on May 20, 2011 at 11:54am — No Comments

Walmart and Cheap Labor, most of Us are Guilty When Comes to Buying Cheap





WE are all guilty in supporting cheap labor. If you buy from Walmart and other stores then you are to blame. I recently turned down a function that Walmart wanted to do at my restaurant. My wife and I decided to not to take money from a corporate machine like that.



Marcus Guiliano is the chef & owner of Aroma Thyme Bistro located in the bountiful Hudson Valley of New York. Chef Guiliano has been an advocate for over 10 years on healthy, sustainable,… Continue

Added by Marcus Guiliano on May 20, 2011 at 11:53am — No Comments

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National News

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Our energy future depends on nuclear fusion, says Michel Laberge. The plasma physicist runs a small company with a big idea for a new type of nuclear reactor that could produce clean, cheap energy. His secret recipe? High speeds, scorching temperatures and crushing pressure. In this hopeful talk, he explains how nuclear fusion might be just around the corner.

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At her first museum job, art historian Sarah Lewis noticed something important about an artist she was studying: Not every artwork was a total masterpiece. She asks us to consider the role of the almost-failure, the near win, in our own lives. In our pursuit of success and mastery, is it actually our near wins that push us forward?

TED: Matthew Carter: My life in typefaces - Matthew Carter (2014)

Pick up a book, magazine or screen, and more than likely you'll come across some typography designed by Matthew Carter. In this charming talk, the man behind typefaces such as Verdana, Georgia and Bell Centennial (designed just for phone books -- remember them?), takes us on a spin through a career focused on the very last pixel of each letter of a font.

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