I love reading John Lethlean’s reviews in The Weekend Australian Magazine every Saturday. This week, he reviewed a new trendy “oh-so-predictable” restaurant in Brisbane called Hatch & Co.
I burst out loud laughing when he talked about Australian restaurant service going down the toilet. Rather than a waiter, he was served by “an interrupter”.
It’s an absolute pet hate of mine too – so many young bouncy service staff seem to think it’s all about them. I feel like screaming some times: DON’T INTERRUPT OUR CONVERSATION MID-SENTENCE! It’s not about them, it’s about us, the diners. The ones paying the bill and ultimately, their wage.
A good waiter should glide in and out topping up water and wine without an announcement, wait for a pause in conversation to take orders, not barge in ruining someone’s punch line.
Some of my favourite restaurants in Perth that have excellent service staff are Rockpool, Galileo, Lamont’s Bishop’s House, Cantina, and Il Pasto. Places that do not include Lalla Rookh (nice food, annoying service that interrupts conversation), The Prophet (a cheap eat, great food, too many waitresses asking us if we want anything else every 10 mins), and Jamies’s Italian (arrogance would be the word I’d use).
I tip my hat to John Lethlean for bringing this most annoying conduct of waiters to the fore.
The thing is, it’s not that hard to get it right. I waitressed for four years all through Uni, it can be hard work I know. All it takes to be a good waiter is good manners, a smile, and good timing.