Friday, October 22, 2010

Fancypants Chefs Can Die in a Fire

Sorry, I ordered a Burger.
Chefs, what is with the damn ramekins of ketchup? Has Top Chef got you pining to be taken seriously as an artist? Got you wanting to stretch your cheffy legs, and whip up gastronomical miracles? Great. Good for you. But cold shower moment: if you offer burgers on your menu then you're not that fancy. Stop lying to yourselves. Ground beef on a bun is the international symbol for low rent. Dressing them up a little and serving condiments in little metallic spittoons isn't fooling anyone into thinking they're dining at Le Cirque. It just reminds us what pretentious jerks are running the restaurant. Also ordering a cheeseburger and fries is a good indication that we're not looking to be wowed. Nothing wrong with being wowed. Enjoy being wowed, but there's a time and a place for it. Sometimes a simple cheeseburger and fries is all a feller is looking for. So bring us the bottle and leave us in peace. Spare your waitstaff the ignominy of making three trips until we've built a ketchup fortress of solitude around our plate.

And stop trying to "improve" standards. You know exactly what we're talking about. If you're looking to create a signature dish then do it on your own time. Keep your hands off our Eggs Benedict. Sunday brunch is no the time to be fucking with a man's expectations. Sunday brunch doesn't need your "interpretation." And what is with the faux-Jazz terms anyway? You're a cook not Thelonious Monk. You're a recession away from working at Sizzler. If we're out to brunch, and order Eggs Benedict then there had best be two poached eggs, hollandaise sauce, Canadian bacon and an English muffin on our plate. No brioche. No red peppers. No crab meat. No creative flourishes. Nothing, nada. If you want to improve it then call it something else. Call it Eggs "Insert Name of Chef Here". That way we know to avoid it.

We give things names for a reason, Chefs. That way, when you ask a carpenter to install a new "door" at your restaurant, you don't come back five hours later to find a nice bay window instead and a carpenter who felt inspired! It just leads to anarchy. So the next time someone orders a Club Sandwich, think twice before you serve them a lobster fennel salad instead. Maybe, just maybe, they used the words Club Sandwich for a reason.

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