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October 10, 2007 / Tony

What Constitutes Good Service at a Restaurant?

Slate has an interesting book review that delves into that very question.  My favorite line from the article:  “The secret to service is not servitude, but anticipating desire.”  (I believe a similar statement was made by one of the servants in Gosford Park.)  I think this statement is true.  It is so satisfying to recieve something that you need or desire without having to ask for it.  Obviously, this is great in a restaurant but think of a gift.  Isn’t it better to recieve a gift that you really wanted but didn’t tell the giver that you wanted it?  Or even better, the giver knows you so well that he or she could anticipate that you would like a gift that you weren’t even aware of.  What makes this type of service so special is the fact that the giver is focused enough on your needs to know them better than you do yourself. 

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