I have great admiration for chefs. I love great food and that by itself should be enough. I also often wonder why they do it. The hours are long and usually evenings and weekends. The conditions are hot and they work on their feet for hours. Its hard work. And until they progress quite … Continue reading An Outsiders Perspective on the Restaurant “stage”
In my view food literacy is a key element of improved health outcomes, reduced waste, and a stronger connection to where food comes from and how it is produced. A deeper understanding of production, processing, the whole value chain, will also likely help foster the conversation on production technologies that is so absent from the … Continue reading Kids and Food Literacy.
I’ve had several people ask about my thoughts relative to the increase in the Ontario minimum wage and restaurants. Here is my stream of consciousness perspective. I am sure more will occur to me as I think about it more and have the chance to speak with people in the industry, 1 – It will … Continue reading Restaurants and Ontario’s Minimum Wage Increase
We've all heard the stories about restaurants hiring attractive young servers and forcing them to wear "sexy" clothes. Research suggests that many factors, including the server's appearance, increase the size of the tip paid at the end of the meal. That makes the server happy but is it good for the restaurant? A new paper … Continue reading Are we hiring the wrong servers?
Gender inequity in restaurant management has been in the news again recently. While there has been a lot of hand wringing and finger pointing, there has been much less discussion about what, if anything, we should do about it. It is relatively clear that restaurant management is dominated by men (we have recent survey data … Continue reading Is Tipping Contributing to Gender Inequity in Restaurants?
We saw in the news yesterday that Earls Restaurants has announced that they have sourced the beef they want for a portion of their Canadian restaurants from Canadian suppliers. Earls apologized for not working harder to find Canadian product and committed to finding more Canadian product that meets their specifications. They did not say they … Continue reading What are the Lessons from the Earls Beef Imbroglio?
The uproar around the Earl’s beef announcement is not surprising but the invective is been disappointing. I thought I’d reflect on what I see (based on our research and my experience) what the real issues are and how we might move forward. Apologies – it’s a bit of a long one. Is “Humane” a red … Continue reading What’s the Beef?
I’ve had frequent discussions on the emerging trend to get rid of tipping. Many people whose opinion I respect argue that the best approach is to simply raise prices. They cite Danny Meyers and his Union Square Hospitality Group’s announcement that tipping will disappear in their restaurants to be replaced by higher prices. My friend … Continue reading The Case for a Service Charge
There’s been buzz again about the bill to ban employers from taking a share of tips. While Michael Prue was defeated, the bill has been revived by the Liberal MPP who beat him. There appears to be broad support as it heads off to committee for discussion. The basic premise is the “employers” cannot take … Continue reading Is the new Ontario Tip Law a good thing? Maybe not.
The no tipping movement seems to be gaining momentum. We’re hearing multiple stories about restaurant groups (Danny Meyers’ Union Square Hospitality Group) and individual restaurants pledging to move away from tipping. There are a number of good reasons: The ability to distribute wages more equitably – particularly to pay kitchen staff more and to improve … Continue reading No Tipping? Now What?