5@5 - Restaurateur Danny Meyer
June 18th, 2010
05:00 PM ET
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5@5 is a daily, food-related list from chefs, writers, political pundits, musicians, actors, and all manner of opinionated people from around the globe.

We asked our readers about their biggest restaurant pet peeves - now, we're turning to one of the hospitality pros for his say.

Danny Meyer is the CEO of New York City's Union Square Hospitality Group. His restaurants include Union Square Cafe, Gramercy Tavern, Eleven Madison Park, Shake Shack and many more.

Danny and his team have earned an astounding 21 James Beard Foundation Awards, including: Outstanding Restaurateur; Outstanding Service; and Outstanding Wine Service among others.

5 Phrases Danny Meyer Hopes You'll Never Hear in One of His Restaurants

1. "Are we still working on the salmon?"

2. "May I bring you a bottle of mineral water or do you drink Bloomberg tap water?"

3. "It's against our policy."

4. "May I grind some fresh pepper for the lady?"

5. "How is everyone enjoying themselves?"

Is there someone you'd like to see in the hot seat? Let us know in the comments below and if we agree, we'll do our best to chase 'em down.

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Filed under: 5@5 • Think


soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. beatspro

    Since there is snow beats pro on the ground and she's waiting in beats by dre turbine her undies in front of the Eiffel Tower, she'd probably appreciate it should you hurry.

    November 27, 2011 at 3:23 am |
  2. sex at schoo`

    Properly crafted post, and that i also at the moment comprehended that will several categories tend to be more inclined than some others (since everybody is exclusive) might reveal exactly the same idea. I think you will keep this blog working well.

    August 16, 2011 at 10:08 pm |
  3. mutuelle jeune

    amazing post thanx for sharing

    June 22, 2011 at 10:59 am |
  4. John

    @piz – as someone who also works in the hospitality industry, I sympathize with what you're saying. There are always exceptions to the rule, but the occasional math mistake isn't a justification.

    Picking up the check prior to the guest's departure does the following:

    -makes the guest feel rushed. it comes across as a passive aggressive way of saying "you're done here".

    -makes the guest feel uncomfortable b/c the waiter sees the tip. obviously most of the time this isn't a problem, but what if the patron perceived some service issues and/or the tip isn't up to the waiter's expectations? This creates tension and, worst case scenario, confrontation.

    The dining experience is about the *customer*, but all too often restaurant staff see customer interaction as some sort of adversarial game. Ultimately, this leads to a less satisfying experience for both patrons and staff.

    June 22, 2010 at 2:18 pm |
  5. piz

    @John – after years as a waiter and manager I now encourage servers to pick up signed checks BEFORE the guest leaves because careless math mistakes by a drunk patron all too often result in the staff getting screwed out of tips and disputes with credit card companies over charges. Why do you want to sit there and look at your signed check anyway?

    June 22, 2010 at 8:22 am |
  6. John

    funny, b/c I ate at Union Square Cafe not quite 2 weeks ago and the waitress committed foul #1 on his list. In addition, at the end of the meal she took away the signed/settled bill prior to us leaving (big no-no). While I think he's got the right ideas and certainly seems to understand 'hospitality', sometimes I wonder how well these ideas are transferred to his staff.

    June 21, 2010 at 5:46 pm |
  7. AC

    @steve I think it's because of the upsell, the implication that you need something (for which you will be charged) that you haven't ordered.

    June 21, 2010 at 2:18 pm |
  8. Steve

    Great. But does know exactly what part of #2 is verboten? Do all the USHG restaurants serve tap unless you specify otherwise? I assume it's not the colloquialism…

    June 21, 2010 at 1:17 pm |
  9. dmanburger

    Another genius is new executive chef David Santos at 5 and Diamond http://dmanburger.wordpress.com/2010/06/21/dmanburger-5-and-diamond-new-5-00-menu-from-chef-david-santos/

    June 21, 2010 at 11:18 am |
  10. dmanburger

    this man is a genius ! http://dmanburger.wordpress.com/

    June 18, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
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