Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Nobody Puts Baby in a Corner: Restaurant Seating Etiquette

Posted By on Wed, Dec 17, 2008 at 6:35 AM

Since Patrick Swayze can't always be around to save us from crappy restaurant tables--like in this bootlegged clip of Dirty Dancing, one of the greatest films of our time--I find that I'm increasingly taking matters into my own hands when the host or hostess tries to seat my party in the cheap seats.

Don't get me wrong: I certainly don't expect to be stationed with the beautiful people, just like I don't expect my dinged-up minivan to be valet-parked at the front door with the all the expensive cars that are, you know, compensating for something. But I don't want to spend a couple of expensive hours squinting into blinding sun, shivering under an over-compensating air vent or dodging the crossfire between the servers' station and the kitchen door. So I just ask politely if we could possibly relocate.

Here are my questions for you, Bites readers:

1. When there are tables open, do you ask a server to move you to a more hospitable spot, like from a table to a booth or vice versa?

2. If so, do you find the server is generally obliging or surly about the request? (Servers, chime in here, please.)

3. What do you consider the worst seats in Nashville restaurants--you know the ones, the dreary tables and Siberian dining rooms to be avoided at all costs?

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