Deconstructed anything, food on boards, ironic seating among other sins.
April 6, 2016 10:30 AM   Subscribe

Questionable restaurant trends. (slBuzzfeedlisticle)

Even more lovely stuff at We Want Plates.
posted by Kitteh (176 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
 
#18 FTW. I will attend any restaurant that promises to restrain and gag noisy children, irrespective of what kind of twee beaker/trough/bedpan combo they use to serve their vittles.
posted by lalochezia at 10:37 AM on April 6, 2016 [14 favorites]


The weird serving stuff is awful, but I really want to try the bone marrow apple turnover.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 10:38 AM on April 6, 2016 [20 favorites]


I understand the idea behind the wooden boards--my veggie burger and its accompanying canister of fries were served to me last night on one--but man, everything spills off from it all over the table and I swear to you I am not a messy eater.
posted by Kitteh at 10:39 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


What is the idea behind wooden boards? "We'd like to serve food on something that is virtually impossible to sterilize"?
posted by Frowner at 10:42 AM on April 6, 2016 [45 favorites]


Also, when McDonalds is now serving meals on faux-wooden boards, you know it's time the idea died.
posted by Kabanos at 10:42 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


I understand the idea behind the wooden boards

I don't. Fill us in because this has been really bugging me.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:42 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


What is the idea behind wooden boards?

I figure you can just plane the top off the board, and then add the sawdust to the grated parmesan.
posted by backseatpilot at 10:43 AM on April 6, 2016 [99 favorites]


Thank you for translating the title "19 Hipster Restaurants That Need To Be Immediately Fucking Stopped." Christ.
posted by little onion at 10:47 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Last fancy place I went to, they served meat not on wooden boards, but on thin, flat rectangular pieces of some porous black stone - sort of like granite tiles. I rolled my eyes some, but they made bloody good tartare , so I went along with it.
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:47 AM on April 6, 2016


Is the "idea" anything more complicated than "it fits with the rustic, farm-to-table, 'authenticity' schtick that's popular right now"? (It's a shtick I like sometimes, no judgment intended there)
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 10:47 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


A few months ago, I ordered a Mimosa at brunch, and got this deconstructed abomination.

As far as I can tell, it was intentionally served this way.
posted by schmod at 10:47 AM on April 6, 2016 [28 favorites]


what is deconstructed anything good for? I eat a plated meal created by a corporate chef about once a month, and I'm always bemused as to why they take everything apart and add blobs of flavor here and there. I would not be surprised to have deconstructed chili, or deconstructed applesauce. The whole point of food is that it cooks together and the flavors mingle!
posted by rebent at 10:47 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


The other infuriating new trend: "Can I take that away for you?"
posted by schmod at 10:49 AM on April 6, 2016 [5 favorites]


I think mostly because restaurants think it looks cool and edgy? Or at the very least as a way to distinguish themselves from those stodgy ole restaurants that use such every day boring things like plates.

(At the same pub, my friend ordered a salmon leek pie and it sat on the saddest bed of wilted spinach in the biggest bowl I've ever seen. I don't understand that.)
posted by Kitteh at 10:49 AM on April 6, 2016


That mimosa though! Did they provide a third glass in which to mix the actual drink? I assume the idea is that some people like their mimosas to be mostly champagne and some people like them mostly orange juice so you might as well mix your own - but if I'm mixing my own, I'm staying home where I can have seconds. (Mimosas are pretty much the only booze I drink.)
posted by Frowner at 10:49 AM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


Re wooden boards: they're great for anything you need to cut with a sharp knife b/c it won't damage the knives. I remember being served ridiculously good steaks not too far from Salamanca in Spain on wooden boards (with a receptacle carved into them for a massive load of fresh aioli, the real kind, not the kind that's been cheated smooth with eggs). Those boards also had a channel carved around the edge of the board for juicy run-off.

Also, sanitizing wooden boards is not really a problem.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 10:50 AM on April 6, 2016 [16 favorites]


I mean, since if you poured all the orange juice into the champagne it would overflow and vice versa?
posted by Frowner at 10:50 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


I am a grown-ass man, and if you serve me my food on or in a frickin' toy I will not make a fuss about it but I will also not be back.
posted by The Card Cheat at 10:51 AM on April 6, 2016 [5 favorites]


A few months ago, I ordered a Mimosa at brunch, and got this deconstructed abomination.

There's a place here that does mixed drinks that way, not sure about mimosas,* but the point is basically to let people get as mind-numbingly plastered as they'd like, which is fine by me.

*Really don't go to Stan's at any time when there's enough daylight to be drinking mimosas
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 10:52 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]




The rusty Dyson airblades are hilarious.
posted by maryr at 10:54 AM on April 6, 2016 [32 favorites]


This "article" is the food journalism equivalent of all the shit they're complaining about.
posted by Celsius1414 at 10:55 AM on April 6, 2016 [22 favorites]


So the bicycle seat is like your own built in sobriety test, right? You want enough booze to numb your genitals, but not so much that you fall off it more than twice.
posted by Hypatia at 10:55 AM on April 6, 2016 [15 favorites]


Most high chairs have belts to keep kids from slipping or wiggling out of them, so I don't see what's odd about the chairs. And breakfast in a metal dish doesn't bother me much, given I eat regularly at Indian restaurants that give you sectioned metal plates, or a bunch of small containers in a larger metal tray/plate. But drizzling sauce all over a wooden board?
posted by tavella at 10:56 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


I also like "Are you still enjoying that?"

"No, sir, I am continuing to eat it only from a grim sense of duty. Begone."
posted by Hypatia at 10:56 AM on April 6, 2016 [95 favorites]


I will eat the hell out of a bone marrow apple turnover with bourbon smoked apples and spiced pork rinds, and I will absolutely eat it for dessert.


It's not the restaurant's fault if customers can't or won't read a menu.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 10:57 AM on April 6, 2016 [23 favorites]


Hairy Lobster: "Also, sanitizing wooden boards is not really a problem."

Uhh, I might want more reassurance than a blog named "Savory Lotus" trying to sell me essential oils.
posted by crazy with stars at 10:57 AM on April 6, 2016 [15 favorites]


That mimosa though! Did they provide a third glass in which to mix the actual drink?

Nope! That would have been merely irritating.
posted by schmod at 10:57 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


What is the idea behind wooden boards?
To show you're too hip to bother with actual cutting boards with troughs routered along the top edge to catch the runoff?
posted by Thorzdad at 10:58 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Were I am sometimes its wooden boards and sometimes its a square of slate.
posted by biffa at 10:58 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]



That mimosa though! Did they provide a third glass in which to mix the actual drink?

Nope! That would have been merely irritating.


You take a sip of each and swish it around in your mouth to mix, right?
posted by Hypatia at 10:59 AM on April 6, 2016 [5 favorites]


Aside from the pub I ate at last night--and I eat there every two weeks because I play Team Trivia--I think the only other irritating food trend listed here is that the really good tapas place downtown serves everything on slates and in teeny baskets. I probably don't eat at enough cool places to notice a lot of these.
posted by Kitteh at 11:00 AM on April 6, 2016


If I wanted my meal "deconstructed" I'd just go to a grocery store.
posted by Foosnark at 11:00 AM on April 6, 2016 [47 favorites]


I understand the idea behind the wooden boards

It's a trencher. It's not the best choice for all foods, but it's not exactly a "new" trend.

I would put money on the idea that someone has already opened a trendy joint called "Trencher's" that serves everything on stale bread.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:01 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


That last caption. "They actually have plates. Maybe having plates is ironic now?" Made me larf.
posted by 3.2.3 at 11:02 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


About twenty years ago, I worked in the dining room of a retirement community. It was more like a restaurant; we'd take orders and the tables seated four; etc. etc. etc. There was usually no turnover per table, and everyone ate early.

Part of the table set up included a tiny glass pitcher of cream for coffee. If there weren't enough pitchers (they were dirty/broken/whatever), we were supposed to put a bowl of individual cream tubs out on the table.

One new girl didn't know the procedure, and put a bowl of cream on one of my tables.

"What am I, a cat?" the resident said when he saw it.

This article reminds me of this.
posted by Lucinda at 11:02 AM on April 6, 2016 [16 favorites]


Wash Post today has the latest of trends - meal tickets .. (well, more like paying upfront for a reservation, with uber-like surge pricing and all that fun grar inducing crap)
posted by k5.user at 11:04 AM on April 6, 2016


Also, sanitizing wooden boards is not really a problem.

In fairness, it looks like various university sites and the feds do say that dilute bleach water sanitizes wooden cutting boards. Thieves' oil, probably not so much. But it seems like they're cleanable.

However, I do find myself wondering about, like, the log with the wasabi stuff on it. I guess you could dip it in bleach water but it does seem to have more crevasses.
posted by Frowner at 11:04 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


"Uhh, I might want more reassurance than a blog named "Savory Lotus" trying to sell me essential oils."

Yeah, prolly not the best link, just the first that came up.

How about this one?
posted by Hairy Lobster at 11:05 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


There's only one reason to serve food on a wooden board.

Cheese boards are also a great use of wood, since marble can encourage the cheese to stay cold when most (if not all) cheese should be served room-temperature.

That said... I used to be a hobbiest woodworker and nothing gets my goat faster than food being served on improperly treated wooden surfaces. It should have a food-safe finish (like tung), not whatever-the-shit this roughly-cut half-skateboard has on it.
posted by flibbertigibbet at 11:06 AM on April 6, 2016 [11 favorites]


I'm opening a new eatery where we serve reconstructed deconstructed dishes. We'll be able to charge $35 for a thimble of mac-and-cheese.
posted by Thorzdad at 11:06 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


One time we went out to lunch for a holiday party to this hip place on, I want to say Harvard St. in Boston. The food was decent but after the meal I ordered coffee and they served it to me in... a wine glass.

Sure, this looked all fancy, until I went to actually drink my coffee. It was scalding hot, so I couldn't hold it by the container part of the glass (the... glass? the bulb?) and when I went to lift it by the stem it was top heavy because they had filled it to the brim with scalding hot coffee so any attempt to lift it would have sent it toppling over onto the table, my lap, and the lap of our dick CFO who was sitting next to me.

I probably should have just spilled it on myself, lived with the burn scars, and sued their ass. Instead I spent 20 minutes wondering what the fuck until it was finally cool enough to drink.

To this day the dumbest thing I've ever seen in a restaurant and if I ever see it again I will immediately ask that they serve me hot coffee in something I can actually drink out of.
posted by bondcliff at 11:07 AM on April 6, 2016 [22 favorites]


A few months ago, I ordered a Mimosa at brunch, and got this deconstructed abomination.

Oh yeah, like that time I ordered a gin and tonic at the upscale dining spot "British Airways Flight 293" and got a bottle of gin and a can of tonic. It was pretty good, since I could just make it largely gin, plus they gave me this free pouch with a sleep mask and some godawful socks which I believe my former roommate still has and might even wear sometimes.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 11:07 AM on April 6, 2016 [23 favorites]


We'll be able to charge $35 for a thimble of mac-and-cheese.

No, 35 thimbles of various cheeses, wheat, cream, and eggs...
posted by flibbertigibbet at 11:08 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


I kind of wish this had actual restaurant trends that are tiresome* rather than a smattering of obnoxious items but, hey, those items *are* pretty obnoxious.

* not taking reservations so if you want to get in you have to wait in line,** sharable plates that are too small to share, "low class" food dressed up to be fancy/expensive, etc etc etc

**yes, I know this reduces no-shows! it's still tiresome and means that for the most part only people that pay for someone to wait in line or have the schedule flexibility to get to the restaurant at 4pm and wait can eat there! There are other ways!
posted by everybody had matching towels at 11:08 AM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


Mason jars do seem to be a thing these days. Whatevs.

11. This place that thought it was OK to show a video of mince being made as ironic entertainment for diners.

Bring back the silent movies "Ground Round" style plz kthxbi
posted by Melismata at 11:09 AM on April 6, 2016 [6 favorites]


I have actually eaten at a The Works burger restaurant and experienced this one. One hand, yes, it is utterly stupid, on the other hand, I at least know how much sugary soda I am having with dinner if I'm counting calories.
posted by Kitteh at 11:11 AM on April 6, 2016 [6 favorites]


Technically, those dishes are pre-constructed. Fookin' lazy chefs.
posted by JohnFromGR at 11:12 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


I'll eat mashed potatoes out of a mug, but only if I'm sitting on my couch in sweatpants.
posted by Sophie1 at 11:14 AM on April 6, 2016 [17 favorites]


It's trickle down dining. Trends that make sense in certain contexts get widely adopted and adapted by people who didn't really understand the context. I went to a gastropub recently that had borrowed a ton of trends and misapplied all of them, including just spraying citric acid onto cole slaw, presumably to give it a little acidity, but when Bobby Flay does it, he makes a sauce of lemon juice, orange juice, honey, mustard, basil and some salt and pepper, he doesn't just spritz some unflavored citric acid and decide he's done.

I won't discuss design trends. That's front of the house, and neither bothers me nor doesn't. But here's the good uses for the food trends being discussed:

FOOD IN A GLASS: This seems to have started in France, and it was a way of delivering finger foods and deserts that grouped them all together, instead of having them all spilled out on a little plate. And that's fine. Many Americans eat ice cream out of glasses without thinking twice. But martini glasses are a bad choice, as they are easy to knock over, and anything that must be eaten with a spoon should not go into a narrow drinking vessel, which can make it hard to eat.

DECONSTRUCTED FOOD: Man, this one had gone off the rails. It was always a novelty, but the original logic was that you create a new food using the ingredients of an existing food, which showcases those ingredients, but tastes like the original meal when eaten. It does not simply mean serving the original ingredients separate and making the customers combine them.

FLAT BOARDS: As mentioned above, they are good for cheeses. Also fruits or vegetables. Thicker chutneys. Often all three at once. It's a rustic presentation, to be sure, but that's some people's bag.

BONE MARROW IN BAKING: Pastries have been made with marrow since the middle ages, so that's just an old technique making a comeback thanks to paleo fanatics, who slurp up bone marrow like it was, I don't know, something delicious cavemen did not eat. Hotcakes, maybe.

TIN CANS FOR DRINKS: I mean, we already drink soda out of a can, so who cares? These weren't rusted cans. They looked a little odd in the photo from condensation. And mason jars? Freaking Carl Perkins sang about drinking liquor from an old fruit jar, so get used to it.
posted by maxsparber at 11:14 AM on April 6, 2016 [61 favorites]


sharable plates that are too small to share

Oh yeah this is the worst, tied with "small plates" that are priced like entrees but you have to get three of them.
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 11:14 AM on April 6, 2016 [20 favorites]


I'm usually a defender of fancy restaurants, interesting presentations, and unique takes on common dishes. But yeah, most of this stuff would be super annoying. Uncomfortable seating is my #1 restaurant pet peeve right now. If I'm going to be sitting there for an hour or more, it's much more important that it be comfortable than that it look cool.

Beer in a mason jar is fine by me, though.
posted by primethyme at 11:18 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


There's a cafe nearby that serves coffee in glasses or glass jars. Glass, no handle, hot drink. People always suggest this place for meetups and I have to put my foot down every time.
posted by tofu_crouton at 11:19 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


just don't go to the restaurant you don't like
posted by beerperson at 11:19 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


Beer in mason jars has been around for decades.
posted by octothorpe at 11:21 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


sharable plates that are too small to share

Oh yeah this is the worst, tied with "small plates" that are priced like entrees but you have to get three of them.


I hate this on a couple levels. For one thing, it's socially awkward - am I supposed to order a "small plate" and a "large plate?" How much food actually comes on a "small plate?" For another, as Mrs. Pterodactyl points out, it seems like it's structured to get you buy several things.
posted by ColdOfTheIsleOfMan at 11:23 AM on April 6, 2016


I will admit that I'm weirdly delighted when food is served in unusual containers. So you can all blame me, because I'm all, "Meatloaf served on a tennis racket? Yes, please!"
posted by xingcat at 11:26 AM on April 6, 2016 [36 favorites]


I was at a restaurant the other day and when we were done, they told us to throw all of our plates and utensils directly into the trash!
posted by gwint at 11:27 AM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


I was appropriately horrified by most of these until I got to the beer in a mason jar. And then I was like, wait, am I part of the problem?
posted by redsparkler at 11:27 AM on April 6, 2016 [5 favorites]


By the way, their complaint wasn't about food on a wooden board. It was about saucy food on a wooden board. That's a very legit complaint (though not something I've ever experienced). Charcuterie on a board? Great. Turkey and gravy? Not so much.
posted by primethyme at 11:28 AM on April 6, 2016 [13 favorites]


I am not ashamed to admit I have quite a few empty mason jars in my freezers for beer.
posted by entropicamericana at 11:29 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


also i was hoping that 'ironic seating' would refer to seating arrangements rather than the seats themselves, like, i dunno, making all the chairs face the wall or something
posted by beerperson at 11:29 AM on April 6, 2016 [18 favorites]


(At the same pub, my friend ordered a salmon leek pie and it sat on the saddest bed of wilted spinach in the biggest bowl I've ever seen. I don't understand that.)

GIANT BOWLS! I'm perplexed as well. A restaurant in my neighborhood recently seated me and a friend at a teeny weeny little table (many of their tables are tiny two-tops). Both of our entrees arrived in gigantic bowls with big wide flat rims. So they could barely fit on the table together, and our wine glasses were in mortal peril.

That much bowl real estate was not necessary, for two dishes basically made up of a pureed root vegetable with a piece of protein on top. And it feels like it couldn't possibly be good for their bottom line, either--if we had wanted to order anything else, sides or appetizers or really, anything that took up three-dimensional space, it could never have fit. So we were discinclined to do anything but huddle there very carefully over our giant bowls.
posted by theatro at 11:29 AM on April 6, 2016 [9 favorites]


I am not ashamed to admit I have quite a few empty mason jars in my freezers for beer.

noooooooooooooooooooo
posted by beerperson at 11:30 AM on April 6, 2016 [8 favorites]


My pet peeve: Menus that list dishes like:

1.) Kielbasa - Persimmon - Oak
2.) Anchovy - Vanilla - Chive
3.) Morel - Smoke - Cider

Just fucking give a simple description of the dish, FFS.
posted by jeff-o-matic at 11:30 AM on April 6, 2016 [11 favorites]


I don't have any strong feelings about food served on weird things, or in toys or whatever. Do I have appropriate cutlery? Great. I haven't noticed weird stuff about glasses, though I don't particularly like drinking out of mason jars because the screw irritates me.

I do hate weird height tables and chairs and uncomfortable chairs and, especially, stools. Fuck stools.
posted by jeather at 11:32 AM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


Sorry, just the one freezer. Is that still a problem?
posted by entropicamericana at 11:32 AM on April 6, 2016


your beer wants to be warmer
posted by beerperson at 11:33 AM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


TIN CANS FOR DRINKS: I mean, we already drink soda out of a can, so who cares? These weren't rusted cans. They looked a little odd in the photo from condensation.

Not to mention, that looked like a mint julep, which is traditionally served in a tin cup. I prefer vessels that don't prompt me to check the rim for jagged edges before drinking, but it's not totally out of left field.
posted by EvaDestruction at 11:35 AM on April 6, 2016 [5 favorites]


My other pet peeve: salads served on flat plates, especially in the case of a dressing that doesn't 'stick' well to the ingredients. Then you get the run off situation plus you can only eat the ingredients that are stab-able and none that require scooping.
posted by tofu_crouton at 11:35 AM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


your beer wants to be warmer

perhaps, but i want it to be cooler.
posted by entropicamericana at 11:35 AM on April 6, 2016 [46 favorites]


"Could you please take that back and put it on a plate for me?" is something I've had to ask more than once. And from the smirk one waiter gave me, it was clear that he thought the dirty-looking slice of tree was a bit crap too. What's clear is that anyone who has to wash these things (I can't imagine that random bits of wood do very well in an industrial dishwasher) must hate them too.
posted by pipeski at 11:40 AM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


There are rare examples of true deconstructions that are imaginative and take culinary skill to execute. Unfortunately, far too often, "deconstruction" = "make the customer assemble the dish themselves." If I'm going to do half the chef's job for him, then it's a hearty "fuck you and I'll take my dining-out dollar elsewhere."
posted by prepmonkey at 11:40 AM on April 6, 2016


just don't go to the restaurant you don't like.

But then how do I come up with new Buzzfeed articles?
posted by JohnFromGR at 11:41 AM on April 6, 2016


Le Baiseur de Porc
Prix Fixe du Jour

- Hand passeed Hors D'oeuvres -
Duck confit bourbon jello shots served on glass marbles
Masticated mint julep wads on tofu bacon jerky skewers
Oily heirloom smashed tomatoes in a fine metal sieve


- Soup -

Creamy seasonal shellfish cioppino puree, served in a vintage milkshake tumbler with a straw and garnished with sweet lemon quark.


- Entree -

Cuy Chactado served on own tanned pelt and bed of hot rocks.

- or -

Deconstructed lobster consommé en gelée featuring tepid seawater and homard vivant, served with a large steel mallet.

- Dessert -

Spicy beef tallow shave ice served in a Himalayan salt bowl.

posted by loquacious at 11:42 AM on April 6, 2016 [60 favorites]


Beer in mason jars has been around for decades.

Yep. Ain't nothing wrong with Ball Jars. #indiana
posted by leotrotsky at 11:43 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


Also, those high chairs totally got boosted from a Cracker Barrel, just saying.
posted by leotrotsky at 11:45 AM on April 6, 2016


I’ve been drinking everything out of mason jars for most of my life. It’s weird when something you do, that many people thought odd, becomes trendy. There is no way to explain that you’re not doing it because you’re being trendy, so yes, I’m trendy.
posted by bongo_x at 11:48 AM on April 6, 2016 [6 favorites]


I once ate a raw deconstructed walnut served in a child's innocence. It was sublime, and you're all goddamn philistines.
posted by prize bull octorok at 11:49 AM on April 6, 2016 [38 favorites]


I kind of wish this had actual restaurant trends that are tiresome* rather than a smattering of obnoxious items but, hey, those items *are* pretty obnoxious.

For real. These are not trends! These are "17 individual quirky restaurants that did individual quirky things, 1 guy who thinks a toaster oven tray is a surgical tray, and 1 ok fine I'll give you the mason jar that always makes me spill beer over myself". And I agree that there really are lots of annoying hipster restaurant trends, like communal tables (if it's a bar, call it a bar) and nearly everything to do with small plates. But sitting on a bicycle seat is not a trend.
posted by capricorn at 11:49 AM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


Times like this, I'm glad I live out here in the suburban hinterlands. I've never encountered any of these. (And I'm—well, I hate the term "foodie", as it implies money and pretension to me—but I'm a curious and enthusiastic eater and drinker.) Here in the sticks, we're lucky to have a restaurant in X category—so they have no need to differentiate themselves as "the X restaurant where you sit at reclaimed vintage school desks and drink precious bourbon cocktails from old cast-iron spitoons".

You pay a premium at places like this in order to get the bullshit hipster ambiance. Alternative: don't go to the bullshit hipster places, enjoy good food at a less fashionable restaurant that doesn't piss about with galvanized buckets and deconstructed whatever, and save some money.
posted by escape from the potato planet at 11:49 AM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


From the We Want Plates site: Cheese foam served on the back of your hand (you're supposed to lick it off)....

This is why I'm boring and not cool or anything: while there are some foods I'll eat with my hands --- fries, for instance --- having the waitstaff literally spray the food directly onto my body is not gonna happen.
posted by easily confused at 11:50 AM on April 6, 2016 [6 favorites]


I always assumed that the "deconstructed" fad was a trickle-down effect from competitive cooking shows, wherein contestants who panic about having twenty minutes to assemble an entree from lemon rind, three quail eggs, and pork aspic can hurl some crap on a plate and explain it as "deconstructed Jello salad." I'm frankly a little taken aback that it's a real thing, in places where people aren't operating under contrived circumstances.
posted by Mayor West at 11:52 AM on April 6, 2016


having the waitstaff literally spray the food directly onto my body is not gonna happen.

and you call yourself a libertine
posted by beerperson at 11:52 AM on April 6, 2016 [14 favorites]


So much hate for little reason. If you're this annoyed by eating out, maybe you should stay home.

That said, saucy food on boards is stupid. And if I were served that bolognese, I'd probably laugh and then leave the restaurant.
posted by Gaz Errant at 11:52 AM on April 6, 2016


and you call yourself a libertine

You’re thinking of the place where they serve the food on your friends body.
posted by bongo_x at 11:54 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Also: wooden boards for serving cheese? Great! Wooden boards for serving full dishes, especially ones with sauces? Horrifying, because wooden surfaces are porous, and unless they're sterilizing them between uses, those things are teeming pools of listeria by their third night in service.
posted by Mayor West at 11:54 AM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


The mason jar was a 9 oz jar.
posted by robocop is bleeding at 11:55 AM on April 6, 2016


I once ate a raw deconstructed walnut served in a child's innocence. It was sublime, and you're all goddamn philistines.

Sorry, I'm sticking with the traditional single plum, floating in perfume, served in a man's hat.
posted by Four Ds at 11:56 AM on April 6, 2016 [30 favorites]



For real. These are not trends! These are "17 individual quirky restaurants that did individual quirky things,


Well, I have seen several of those things at different places, so I think that would count as a trend.

Wood boards for saucey stuff, toy containers for stuff (saw those exact little shopping carts at two places) stupid cups that are ill suited to the task, and terrible seating that is supposed to look cool and just actually terrible.
Those seem to be trends. Covering your dyson hand-dryer in rusty metal is just a one off quirk...
posted by Iax at 11:57 AM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


The other infuriating new trend: "Can I take that away for you?"

Nah, i respect that one. I still can't believe how fucking mad some people get when you come up to take their plate of nothing but sauce and oil away so that other stuff will even fit on the table and they have an angry outburst like a toddler.

I've been the person taking the stuff, and i've seen it happen in restaurants way too many times. I am totally on team ask.

There's a cafe nearby that serves coffee in glasses or glass jars. Glass, no handle, hot drink. People always suggest this place for meetups and I have to put my foot down every time.

There's a bullshit place in seattle that serves ALL their coffee drinks in wine glasses, or little port/sherry glasses. Yes, seriously.

I drank an espresso out of a fucking champagne glass there a few days ago. Not only was it impossible to hold, and felt like it was going to shatter at any moment from the temp differential... but it was almost impossible to shoot quickly and swish in my mouth like i like because... fucking really?

Fuckkkkk you slate coffee roasters. Fuck you and your stupid asshole eye rolling barista who was ON THE FUCKING PHONE when he was the only one on bar for like 5 minutes before he'd even take an order from the line of people. Anyone at any place i've worked(where we used NORMAL PORCELAIN CUPS AND SHOT GLASSES) would have been soooooooo fired for that. You are mediocrity defined with useless "cute" furniture.
posted by emptythought at 11:58 AM on April 6, 2016 [23 favorites]


Mayor West, wooden boards aren't the problem, they can be easily sterilized if they are the right boards. But sauce dripping off of them sucks.
posted by agregoli at 11:58 AM on April 6, 2016


Covering your dyson hand-dryer in rusty metal is just a one off quirk...

No, it's the new Dyson® Tetanus™ Blade-Dry™
posted by jeff-o-matic at 11:59 AM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


This child-friendly hipster establishment that helpfully provided creepy Victorian restraints for kids.

If they're bespoke made they made not be lawful. Or at least a lawyer's wet dream.
posted by Emma May Smith at 12:00 PM on April 6, 2016


My least favorite restaurant trend is EVERYTHING IS DEAFENING VOLUME. Metal! Glass! Hardwood! A large, full, open plan dining space! OMFG I CAN'T EVEN HEAR MYSELF JUDGING THE PRESENTATION.
posted by soren_lorensen at 12:03 PM on April 6, 2016 [30 favorites]


and you call yourself a libertine

Sorry, beerperson, but I wanna be introduced before we get to that stage!
posted by easily confused at 12:05 PM on April 6, 2016


Beer in mason jars seems like a terrible idea because heavy glasses, slippery with condensation and no handle looks like a spill waiting to happen. I don't care about the jar-ness of it, but get a handle.
posted by gladly at 12:05 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Coffee in glass cups is pretty common here, but they're nice thick-walled glass that is made to serve hot coffee and I am super sensitive to heat but I can hold those just fine. Wine glasses are not on, though.
posted by jeather at 12:05 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


My least favorite restaurant trend is EVERYTHING IS DEAFENING VOLUME. Metal! Glass! Hardwood! A large, full, open plan dining space! OMFG I CAN'T EVEN HEAR MYSELF JUDGING THE PRESENTATION.

None of that is as bad as "we're going to play music JUST loud enough that everyone has to yell in our echoey as fuck "minimal" space.

A neighborhood bar/restaurant i loved was redecorated to be "minimal" and modern with tiny tables replacing the plush awesome booths, and they did this. All of my hate.
posted by emptythought at 12:06 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


I drank an espresso out of a fucking champagne glass there a few days ago. Not only was it impossible to hold, and felt like it was going to shatter at any moment from the temp differential... but it was almost impossible to shoot quickly and swish in my mouth like i like because... fucking really?

Espresso presented in a heat fractured hemisphere of glass with suspicions of freshly drawn blood ------------- 7
posted by leotrotsky at 12:07 PM on April 6, 2016 [12 favorites]


L.A. is pretty plagued by these types of places and my sister seems to love them, but when my 70 year old mother can't sit down at the table because it is a stool, nope.
posted by Sophie1 at 12:09 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


My alma mater developed this unbreakable glass, which is pretty cool. I think they sell mugs in the gift store.
posted by Melismata at 12:09 PM on April 6, 2016


There's only one reason to serve food on a wooden board.

Oh man am I glad that the cedar-plank salmon thing is mostly dead. Dinner shouldn't taste like the place I store my winter clothes.
There was a while there in the '90's where you could absolutely count on that being served when you went to someone's place for dinner. That and a loaf of pumpernickel hollowed out and filled with dip.
The very last time I ate that cedar salmon I had such a bad reaction to it; every time I burped the whole room smelled like a fish sauna. Makes me wanna barf just thinking about it.
I know that's totally gross. Sorry.
posted by chococat at 12:23 PM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


heavy glasses, slippery with condensation and no handle looks like a spill waiting to happen

Doesn't this perfectly describe a pint glass?
posted by primethyme at 12:26 PM on April 6, 2016 [21 favorites]


When I first got I Prague, I ordered a gin and tonic or whisky and ice several different places.

I got a bottle of tonic, a shot of gin, and glass to mix.
Or whisky and side of ice.

It was a bit odd. I was afraid to order a Manhattan.
posted by sio42 at 12:36 PM on April 6, 2016


Order a sazerac and receive a slight whisper of absinthe with your rye
posted by beerperson at 12:37 PM on April 6, 2016


I experienced pizza served on wooden boards in traditional places in Italy about 15 years ago... and I think the hygiene can work out better than ceramic plates. Not really hipster. The jam jars and tins for drinks tho...
posted by colie at 12:46 PM on April 6, 2016


Pizza on a wooden board isn't weird, it normally comes out of the oven on one anyway. It's the drippy saucy spilling things on a board that are weird and unpleasant.
posted by tavella at 12:48 PM on April 6, 2016


I do not like my fries in tiny dainty buckets, because you always get less fries that way and you just have to pour them out anyway because the tiny baskets tip over. Even worse for little shopping carts, what is that even about, it's irritating.

Mostly I feel sad for the dishwasher; all that pretty cutout design on the fry buckets, just means tiny holes filled with grease and ketchup he has to clean out.
posted by emjaybee at 12:50 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


just don't go to the restaurant you don't like

WHAT IS THIS MADNESS

Seriously, this mostly just looks like the sad tag ends of five-year-old restaurant trends being imitated fetishistically and yet inaccurately by people who don't know any better. Like, at least get mad about genuinely current nonsense.
posted by praemunire at 12:54 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


Metafilter: Like, at least get mad about genuinely current nonsense.
posted by Melismata at 12:55 PM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


You take a sip of each and swish it around in your mouth to mix, right?

She calls it a mayonegg.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 12:56 PM on April 6, 2016 [15 favorites]


Hairy Lobster: (with a receptacle carved into them for a massive load of fresh aioli, the real kind, not the kind that's been cheated smooth with eggs)

Holy shit, I have an egg allergy and I can't believe I didn't learn until today that aioli isn't supposed to be code for mayo. Thank you Hairy Lobster!
posted by frecklefaerie at 12:57 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Mayonegg context.

I can't even watch it because I'll laugh hard enough to start crying.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 12:57 PM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Put It On A Plate
posted by Daily Alice at 12:59 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Uhh, I might want more reassurance than a blog named "Savory Lotus" trying to sell me essential oils.

wooden surfaces are porous, and unless they're sterilizing them between uses, those things are teeming pools of listeria by their third night in service.

Plastic & Wood Cutting Boards
posted by jon1270 at 1:00 PM on April 6, 2016


Bunch of curmudgeons. Outside of a few of the more impractical/uncomfortable ones, I'd be delighted at these. I guess I'm easily amused.

Nah, i respect that one. I still can't believe how fucking mad some people get when you come up to take their plate of nothing but sauce and oil away so that other stuff will even fit on the table and they have an angry outburst like a toddler.

Oh god, I try not to be a toddler about it, but that's me. I panic if you try to take my smidgeon of food away, and it's embarrassing.
posted by moira at 1:10 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


What is the idea behind wooden boards?

They look nice and are useful for dishes like charcuterie or cheese plates, where you may or may not be cutting. For basically anything else, they're stupid and twee and annoy the shit out of me.

Were I am sometimes its wooden boards and sometimes its a square of slate

The slate is aping Ferran Adria/elBulli's presentation style.

I get the ranting about deconstruction, I really do, but what you're ranting about is deconstruction done poorly. As with any style of cuisine, when it's done well, it's spectacular. Unfortunately, as with so much modernist cuisine, many chefs have adopted the aesthetic and turned it into technique fetishism without ever asking the important questions about making a dish: does it taste good? does this provide a good (re)interpretation and expression of the product? can it be eaten without much fuss?

Generally the point behind good deconstruction is to showcase all of the ingredients of a particular dish, that over time as you eat will meld into the flavours of the original. Often, the point is not to recognize the original reference immediately, and hope to provoke a sense of delight when you realize you're really eating X that has been reimagined.

(with a receptacle carved into them for a massive load of fresh aioli, the real kind, not the kind that's been cheated smooth with eggs)

Holy shit, I have an egg allergy and I can't believe I didn't learn until today that aioli isn't supposed to be code for mayo. Thank you Hairy Lobster!

Thats allioli. Aioli is very properly made with eggs. Only saying this so that if you're hunting for a recipe or asking in a restaurant you get what you actually want/are not allergic to.

Oh yeah this is the worst, tied with "small plates" that are priced like entrees but you have to get three of them.

Small plates priced like main courses more accurately reflect the true cost of production and (depending on other overhead costs) might mean that the poor sods making your food might actually be making okay money. Food is expensive, ok? It's artificially cheap in North America because of the hideous wages that those of us in the kitchen make for the schooling, the time, and the danger we deal with every single day.

My pet peeve: Menus that list dishes like:

1.) Kielbasa - Persimmon - Oak


The point of those (and I love them, personally) is to tell you the flavours/ingredients you're going to encounter, while leaving it a surprise as to exactly how they'll be presented. I mean, when you go to a concert do you expect a set list and specific arrangements to be handed to you first? Of course not. This style of menu is no different.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:16 PM on April 6, 2016 [18 favorites]


Le Baiseur de Porc

ISWYDT.

And yeah, beer-in-a-mason-jar seemed by far the smallest sin here. I once got given hot tea in a (handle-less) mason jar, plus a cloth napkin to hold it with because "watch out, it gets pretty hot." YES THAT'S WHY TEACUPS AND MUGS HAVE HANDLES.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 1:17 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


Seriously, this mostly just looks like the sad tag ends of five-year-old restaurant trends being imitated fetishistically and yet inaccurately by people who don't know any better.

Please back the kickstarter for my new chain of family restaurants, Finnegan McCargoculty's! Enjoy a deconstructed Mexican Bulldog Margarita (that's a bottle of Corona served in a potted agave plant) while your kids nom on hot dog foam and chicken-finger-flavored mochi droplets! Since this is a family restaurant, the chairs are twisted DNA helixes! Ha ha, get it? Also, the wait staff can only speak in affirmations, so don't get confused if you ask for a refill of your oxtail daiquiri and they tell you "you are loved" instead of "sure, right away," and if they come to your table and ask "whom have you cherished today?" that means they're wondering if they can clear your plate! And be sure to save room for desert! One bite of our decadent kale-quinoa ganache (we Instagram it for you, tableside!) and you'll be in foodie heaven! Just be careful, because we serve it on a roll of concertina wire. Also, instead of a bathroom there's an outdoor courtyard and you do your business in a fairy ring. Follow us on Ello for 15% off your first visit!
posted by prize bull octorok at 1:18 PM on April 6, 2016 [12 favorites]


Metal trays are great. They're cheap, lightweight, stackable, easily cleaned, easily stored, and they don't break when you drop them on tile. Piece of waxed paper and here's your burger and fries. There is nothing remotely wrong with this, Buzzfeed. Get over yourself.
posted by BitterOldPunk at 1:20 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


Follow us on Ello

That's literally the first time I've seen Ello mentioned since about a week after I signed up for it when it launched.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:21 PM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


Small plates priced like main courses more accurately reflect the true cost of production and (depending on other overhead costs) might mean that the poor sods making your food might actually be making okay money.

That's an awful lot of mights there. Unless I have a specific reason to believe that staff are making decent wages, assuming they are because the prices are high is silly, high prices abound in basically every industry where the workers still get screwed.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 1:23 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


The wewantplates website is a little behind its Twitter account. I present to you Sausages In A Tree.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 1:23 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


DECONSTRUCTED FOOD

As a graduate of UCI who used to see Jacques Derrida toddling about campus, smoking a pipe, I keep trying and failing to relate this culinary movement to "Structure, Sign, and Play in the Discourse of the Human Sciences."
posted by thomas j wise at 1:24 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


That's an awful lot of mights there. Unless I have a specific reason to believe that staff are making decent wages, assuming they are because the prices are high is silly, high prices abound in basically every industry where the workers still get screwed.

Yeah. One of the things you can guarantee, however, is that hipsterish places that talk about where their produce is sourced are supporting small, artisanal farms instead of agribusiness conglomerates.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 1:26 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


lalochezia: "#18 FTW. I will attend any restaurant that promises to restrain and gag noisy children, irrespective of what kind of twee beaker/trough/bedpan combo they use to serve their vittles."

No ball gag? No sale.
posted by Splunge at 1:32 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


One of the things you can guarantee, however, is that hipsterish places that talk about where their produce is sourced are supporting small, artisanal farms instead of agribusiness conglomerates.

Unless, of course, they are lying.
posted by Faint of Butt at 1:40 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


The hot-drink-in-a-glass-without-a-handle is very old fashioned Eastern European/Russian thing. I definitely got coffee served like that in a milk bar in Krakow, and I've known some older folks around here who've expressed a desire to have "real" tea, i.e., tea served in a glass.

Of course, to get around this, people subsequently invented glass holders like so, so you don't burn your hands too badly. (I can't find the screen shot right now, but I think Yubaba in Spirited Away can be seen using one at some point).
posted by damayanti at 1:43 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


so don't get confused if you ask for a refill of your oxtail daiquiri and they tell you "you are loved"

This doesn't happen in your local? Your bar sucks!
posted by praemunire at 1:48 PM on April 6, 2016


I haven't had a ton of experiences like this, but the one experience I did have disappointed me more than it probably should have.

A burgers-fries-and-beer place in a college town served my fries in a little metal bucket, (the kind you find at craft stores). I wasn't bothered by this; it fit the tone of the place, and--more importantly--appeared to be filled with fries.

Only. Half. Full. Of. Fries. The bottom half of it was filled with crumpled butcher paper, (to make the fries spill artfully over the edges of the bucket, and probably also to prevent the formation of a mass of greasy, soggy fries in the bottom of a container which traps heat and moisture).

I pulled out the paper, just to see if maybe one fry had wandered down below and was still crispy. All I found was deconstructed artisanal disappointment.
posted by Flipping_Hades_Terwilliger at 1:51 PM on April 6, 2016 [15 favorites]


I have eaten a couple of times at a good but slightly trendy restaurant which flirts with some of these things. The pièce de resistance is their teeny-tiny desserts: for (I think) $3.50 you can get a shot glass of tiramisu or about two bites of apple crumble or whatever, or for nine bucks you can get a selection of three of these. My brother in law decided he wanted a proper portion of something so he ordered the three desserts, all carrot cake.

They came neatly lined up, side by each, on a plank. It looked like he had pulled the arm on a one-armed bandit and hit a jackpot.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 1:54 PM on April 6, 2016 [7 favorites]


You pay a premium at places like this in order to get the bullshit

I've thought about this a lot, living on the west side of LA and enjoying going out to eat a lot. I think what happens is that these places have pretty absurd rents, so they're going to have to charge quite a bit no matter what. So they want to make the dining experience seem different or exceptional in some way so that the prices they need to charge seem to be going into something other than just the location.

This is of course a conclusion just from thought-experiment, not real data or knowledge of how restaurants operate beyond "yet another old place closed because they couldn't afford the rent".
posted by flaterik at 1:57 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


how can you walk into one of these places, see some bullshit like short tables with high chairs and not immediately say, "fuck this," and walk right back out?
posted by indubitable at 1:59 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


My theory about "high rents" driving these things also applies to the plating/pricing discussion above - yes, they are absolutely trying to get you to buy multiple items, because it's probably easier for people to decide they want a $10 thing and a $13 thing than a $23 thing.
posted by flaterik at 1:59 PM on April 6, 2016


*quietly puts mason jar in freezer next to beer mugs*

*cough*

carry on
posted by sidereal at 2:03 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


feckless fecal fear mongering: "Thats allioli. Aioli is very properly made with eggs."

Allioli is often made with eggs, and in fact in Catalan today it's most commonly made with eggs. "Purists" say that allioli should be made without eggs, but based on how people actually make it today it's hard really to see a difference between aioli and allioli.
posted by crazy with stars at 2:06 PM on April 6, 2016


Wash Post today has the latest of trends - meal tickets .. (well, more like paying upfront for a reservation, with uber-like surge pricing and all that fun grar inducing crap)

Why not let Nick Kokonas of Alinea explain the ticketing thing for you, since his restaurant invented the idea. It's not being trendy, for them it's smart business.
posted by JoeZydeco at 2:19 PM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Any place that has people waiting in lines to eat there is not going to be affected by some no show reservations.

The no-reservation thing is such a peeve of mine.
posted by archimago at 2:20 PM on April 6, 2016


I really love ailliolliaililiolli
posted by beerperson at 2:20 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


I really like the ticketed thing. As mentioned in that article, the Columbia Room in DC uses it, and it's great! I don't really care about the not having a check at the end part, but I do like that it seems to solve the no-show part on the restaurant end (they still get paid) while keeping reservations on a more accessible level. I haven't seen it with the surge pricing thing, though. That part, as well as the ability to scalp the tickets, sucks.
posted by everybody had matching towels at 2:28 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Ah, yes, sorry about the spelling mistake:

http://www.goodfood.com.au/good-food/cook/allioli-alioli-or-aioli-20140315-34t7h.html

"Allioli, pronounced ah-ee-ohlee, is a Catalan emulsion sauce made with pounded garlic, olive oil and a little salt. That's it. In his authoritative book Catalan Cuisine Colman Andrews quotes an old Catalan saying, "allioli made with egg is just fancy mayonnaise". In greater Spain it is called alioli (ah-lee-ohlee) and is often made with egg. Aioli is another garlic and oil emulsion sauce from Provence in France. This velvety garlic mayonnaise is emulsified with raw egg yolk and is famously napped over morsels of fish in the fish stew bourride."

I was refering to Allioli. It's not easy to make because you can't just mix all the ingredients and pound away. To get a real emulsion you'll have to add the oil little by little and work it for quite some time.

I much prefer it over the egg versions. But it's a real zinger. A fresh, potent batch of this stuff can melt the flesh off your skull if you're sensitive to raw garlic heat.
posted by Hairy Lobster at 2:30 PM on April 6, 2016


14. And this blasphemous place that decided to serve beer in a mason jar.

Hey, I will defend Walt Disney World's Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue to my dying day. Straw! Berry! Short! Cake!
posted by The Underpants Monster at 2:44 PM on April 6, 2016


Metal trays are great. They're cheap, lightweight, stackable, easily cleaned, easily stored, and they don't break when you drop them on tile. Piece of waxed paper and here's your burger and fries. There is nothing remotely wrong with this, Buzzfeed. Get over yourself.

I don't think it's that the trays were metal, it's that they appeared to be the same types of trays your dentist rests their drill bits and tooth-yankers on between pokes at your mouth, which doesn't raise appetizing associations in one's mind.

Here is what I want from plates: big enough for my meal, not easily breakable, scrupulously clean. That's it. Having an assortment of tiny doll-size containers to move around is not an experience that adds something to my meal.
posted by emjaybee at 2:44 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


heavy glasses, slippery with condensation and no handle looks like a spill waiting to happen

You can slip your pinky to the underside of the jar if you're worried about it slipping out of your fingers. but generally when I've been served beer in a mason jar it had a handle.

Also, team frozen beer glass over here. I get that some beers are better warmer, but not shitty cheap lagers on a hot summer day.
posted by Hoopo at 2:51 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Allioli is also the same thing as a proper Lebanese garlic sauce (toum). Apparently a lot of places add potato to make it easier to make, and others doctor it up with tahini or other things, but the true and proper version is raw garlic, olive oil, and a touch of lemon and salt.
posted by tavella at 2:52 PM on April 6, 2016


The two that seem ubiquitous and super annoying in LA (especially the west side, where everything is terrible) are serving everything on boards (and having everything run off / fall off your board) and wacky seating/table arrangements that make it difficult to actually eat comfortably.
posted by thefoxgod at 2:59 PM on April 6, 2016


thanks to paleo fanatics, who slurp up bone marrow like it was, I don't know, something delicious cavemen did not eat

I... had a little trouble parsing your sentence, as I did not read "'something delicious' cavemen did not eat" but "something 'delicious cavemen' did not eat," and wondered, maxsparber, if you were not leading up to some sort of cannibal pitch, like the next Dr. Who companion being Dr. Lecter.
posted by GenjiandProust at 3:03 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


Oh god, I try not to be a toddler about it, but that's me. I panic if you try to take my smidgeon of food away, and it's embarrassing.

The main issue is that these hipstery places usually have TINY tables, or wood planks, or whatever that you can NOT fit an app and mains, or the main plates and deserts on. You just can't. And that necessitates this. There isn't even anywhere to SET the desert for a second with the mains on the table.


So...
posted by emptythought at 3:16 PM on April 6, 2016


The hot-drink-in-a-glass-without-a-handle is very old fashioned Eastern European/Russian thing. I definitely got coffee served like that in a milk bar in Krakow, and I've known some older folks around here who've expressed a desire to have "real" tea, i.e., tea served in a glass.

I dated somebody from an Armenian family that had lived in Ukraine for years. I'm familiar with this one.

But, those glasses weren't paper thin wine/champagne glasses. It's very, very different. They had some mass, thermal and otherwise, to them.

Honestly nothing but champagne or wine should be served in a glass like that(or i guess other wine-family things like port, sherry, grappa, etc). Even cold cocktails get warm stupidly fast in those. Just, no.
posted by emptythought at 3:19 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Took my kids out to dinner. They wanted burgers. Two options: itty-bitty "kid's meal" which is intentionally made to embarrass them, or the super-colossal triple-decker burger dripping with sauces and condiments. It was served on a flat board - not a particularly large one - and it came with fried potato chips served in a sort of paper cone precariously balanced in a wire frame.

I know a lot of people here don't like kids in restaurants, but I think mine performed a social service by teaching the management a lesson about plating food.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:53 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


Ah yeah, that exact combo I've run into a lot recently (sloppy burger / meat dish on a board, fries in thin paper cone with some sort of wire stand). I don't know who did it first, but its spread like wildfire.
posted by thefoxgod at 3:57 PM on April 6, 2016


To this day, the worst thing I've ever experienced was a few years ago when I went to a trendy restaurant and ordered a caesar salad. They brought me a plate with a large, fully intact, grilled romaine heart on it. The (minimal amount of) dressing was drizzled in a little decorative design on the plate, under the romaine - no dressing on the lettuce. Three croutons forming a circle around the romaine and three small tomato wedges. To this day that was the most bullshit caesar salad I have every experienced and I've had thousands of caesar salads. I mean, I get that grilled romaine is a thing, but I strongly feel that if you order a caesar salad, it is not unreasonable to expect something resembling a caesar salad. It is to this day the only yelp review I've ever written. It still makes me violently angry just to think about it.
posted by triggerfinger at 4:04 PM on April 6, 2016 [19 favorites]


For $45 one can buy $10,000.00 worth of deconstructed money. Surely these places take cash.
posted by Doroteo Arango II at 4:17 PM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


I went to a trendy restaurant and ordered a caesar salad...and three small tomato wedges

Who puts tomatoes on a caesar salad?
posted by Max Power at 4:25 PM on April 6, 2016 [9 favorites]


Neckbeard-level: ULTRA, beer-nerd over here. I had an extensive cellar at one point, brew my own beer and have a day job in the beer world, and am you unashamed of drinking my PBR tallboys out of frozen mason jars. Y'all need to chill out and relax. Heed ye well my personal beer motto: Drink good beer when you can, and cold beer when you can't.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 5:20 PM on April 6, 2016 [11 favorites]


You take a sip of each and swish it around in your mouth to mix, right?

Never order a pisco sour at this place.
posted by Dip Flash at 5:28 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


So for the mimosa, I assume if you like orange-juice flavored champagne, you put some into the champagne glass (my preference) or if you want mostly juice, you add the champagne to that. OR take a big swig of one to make room. Whatever. Not gonna be mad at people who give me a full glass of champagne with my mimosa.
posted by dame at 6:14 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


having the waitstaff literally spray the food directly onto my body is not gonna happen.

Indeed. Spray it in my mouth instead. Or make the nozzle longer and just jam it down my oesophagus. Add in some deworming formula and I'm set.
posted by um at 6:17 PM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


I’ve been drinking everything out of mason jars for most of my life. It’s weird when something you do, that many people thought odd, becomes trendy. There is no way to explain that you’re not doing it because you’re being trendy, so yes, I’m trendy.

Yeah, I've jumped on the Ball jar-as-glass train. It's just aesthetically pleasing! And holds a half liter of beverage! (If you fill to the top.) Which is particularly important when I'm downing my requisite huge French Press of coffee every morning. (The first glass is pretty much always about 1/4 milk, which brings the temperature down nicely.) I got the jars originally for canning, but I've run through most of what I canned/froze last year, so it's nice to have extra glasses until it becomes Pickled Beet season again.

And now I want to try drinking tea in them, too. I mostly don't drink beer at home, but I can see freezing a few glasses this summer.
posted by kalimac at 6:50 PM on April 6, 2016



I’ve been drinking everything out of mason jars for most of my life. It’s weird when something you do, that many people thought odd, becomes trendy.


When I was a kid, our fanciest drinking glasses were the ones that chipped beef came in.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 6:54 PM on April 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


I've got one of those Bladerunner glasses, but I still primarily drink whisky out of Nutella jars.
posted by lucidium at 7:14 PM on April 6, 2016


I miss the little jelly jars you could get that had cartoon characters on them, and you could reuse as glasses. My only beef with mason-jars-as-glasses is that I always knock the rim/threads with my teeth and it hurts, also they get slippery and wet quickly. Nothing to do with classy/trendy, just comfort.

Speaking of slippery, I am also not a graceful person. I break and spill things on a regular basis. I gave up on having actual glass glasses after too many of them met their doom at my clumsy hands. Tables that resemble obstacle courses and precariously balanced food items merely tempt my destructive anti-talent to activate. Put me on a rickety bicycle seat and your staff will need a ladder and toothbrush to clean the gourmet, locally-sourced pureed beets out of the crevices of your authentic pressed-tin ceiling when the inevitable happens.
posted by emjaybee at 8:29 PM on April 6, 2016




Speaking of slippery, I am also not a graceful person. I break and spill things on a regular basis. I gave up on having actual glass glasses after too many of them met their doom at my clumsy hands

I had to stop wearing white blouses when I started drinking coffee. I can't imagine what kind of a mess I would make trying to drink the stuff out of a champagne flute.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 9:18 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


small plates

Yeah, and then why do all small plates places refuse to give you a table of reasonable size, instead giving you a tiny little two-seater, and then suggesting that you order 3 dishes each, plus water and a drink? That's not all gonna fit on this table, you psychos!

I do love small plates if they're not crazily priced though! the INDIAN place behind my work will give you "small plates" of indian curries and dishes for like $6 each, and it's really awesome, because I often want like 3 things, but I don't love buffets.
posted by euphoria066 at 9:37 PM on April 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


To this day, the worst thing I've ever experienced was a few years ago when I went to a trendy restaurant and ordered a caesar salad.

I don’t know where this was, but I swear I’ve had that same salad. Please tell me there’s not more than one place doing this.
posted by bongo_x at 9:51 PM on April 6, 2016


I am very disapproving rabbit at the food served in glasses/cups/mugs. That shepherd's pie in a beer mug in entry #1 looks so disgusting.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:13 PM on April 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


Re: the food safety aspects of some of these dubious plate replacements: Would a Food Microbiologist Eat From That?
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:18 PM on April 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


Nah, i respect that one. I still can't believe how fucking mad some people get when you come up to take their plate of nothing but sauce and oil away so that other stuff will even fit on the table and they have an angry outburst like a toddler.


One of my favourite dining experiences was at a bar in East Timor where the waitress tried to take away my colleague's drink before she was finished. My colleague said, "would you mind leaving that please? I'm not quite done."
And the waitress replied in her best American English, with a friendly smile, "I'll fight you for it, bitch."

I still... I just... I can't even.
posted by lollusc at 4:06 AM on April 7, 2016 [18 favorites]


I don't get the high chair one. They're...high chairs. High chairs have belts, bars, or built-in-tables to keep little babies from flopping out and falling on the floor. Has the author never actually seen a high chair?
posted by Bugbread at 4:47 PM on April 7, 2016 [2 favorites]


Has the author never actually seen a high chair?

Those look like the high chairs from every steak/family restaurant in the country at least through the 80’s, and probably still many places today, un-ironically. The author has got to be under 30, maybe under 25, and never eaten at those kind of places. The article says she is from the UK, but who knows who put this together.

Not too long before they run one "what are these ‘plate’ things?" I read that many just found out about bowls recently.
posted by bongo_x at 6:06 PM on April 7, 2016


If you grow up eating solid foods off wooden boards and drinking soup out of glasses, plates and bowls will probably seem ridiculous or so advanced as to be indistinguishable from magic.
posted by Bugbread at 6:58 PM on April 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


I don't know about all that, but I can attest to the fact that coffee, soup, cereal, and mashed potatoes all taste good out of a Pyrex gravy boat.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 7:54 PM on April 7, 2016


Re: the food safety aspects of some of these dubious plate replacements: Would a Food Microbiologist Eat From That?

Man, I was SUPER bummed to click on that link and see that it was a video. I never ever want a link to be a video -- only text (or maybe cat gifs). This, more than anything else, is where I really reach Peak Curmudgeon.
posted by kate blank at 8:30 PM on April 7, 2016 [7 favorites]


I will eat the hell out of a bone marrow apple turnover with bourbon smoked apples and spiced pork rinds, and I will absolutely eat it for dessert.

I am a person who like starters over desserts. I once met up with friends and it was towards the end of their meal. Rather than order off the dessert menu, I ordered a charcuterie plate and asked it to come with everyone's desserts.

Everyone got their desserts except me. I waited patiently for my salami and prosciutto, but when it seemed like it wasn't coming I asked the waiter what happened. They went to go check and told me that the kitchen ignored the order because they thought the waiter made a mistake. I got it for free. A whole plate of meat for free! woop!
posted by like_neon at 3:39 AM on April 8, 2016 [5 favorites]


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