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Kitchen Nightmares is so appealing because it lets you go behind the scenes of failing restaurants and sends you on a journey as Gordon Ramsey steps in to solve their problems. Usually there are management issues, over ordering of food, menu issues, and sometimes it is just plain dirty!
Broadcasting this “never seen before” view of a restaurant has changed how people eat out. Let me tell you how Kitchen Nightmares has changed how I visit a restaurant.
I always look at how clean the restaurant is kept. Are the floors clean? Is the decor updated? Do the worker care about their job? “What would Gordan think???”
I now know to judge a restaurant based on their menu.
Does the menu have pages and pages of items?
When a menu is very large and varied, the cook is probably using too many frozen foods or already prepared dishes. Mimi’s Cafe recently updated their menu. They reduced it down by several pages and sections of foods being offered.
Is there a special of the day?
The kitchen probably has a food that they are trying to get rid of (food about to go bad) or something that was bought cheap (in season vegetables). This may not be the case of a very high end restaurant, but for the average restaurant this is what happens.
Does the menu have something boxed or highlighted in some way?
The chef wants you to order that dish. It could be the item that makes the most money per ingredients. Menu pricing is very intricate. People want to think they are paying what the food is worth, without over paying.
Is the food a good quality?
I am also more critical of food that is being served after watching Kitchen Nightmares. I know what to look for in dishes. Has the dish been reheated? Did it sit under the food warmer lights too long? Has a sauce been over-cooked? Are the vegetables cold? Is the meat RAW!?!
Lastly, you know who to blame when something goes wrong.
Did the expeditor let food leave the kitchen that should have been recooked? Did the waiter not write down the order correctly? Should the manager get involved?
Don’t be fooled in the next restaurant you go to. Keep an open eye and pretend to be Gordon Ramsey out on the hunt for a Kitchen Nightmare – hopefully you won’t find one!
More tips on Eating Out Here:
Do You have a bad restaurant experience? Leave me a comment and let me know.
Image adapted from: http://www.flickr.com/photos/matthewvenn/366986755/