Morgan WilliamsTwo points:
Firstly, I stated that I would wish to avoid it as a paying customer, not as a restauranteur.
Secondly, anything that becomes “fashionable” in Europe, particularly the U.K., has been tried and tested first in the U.S. You obviously didn’t Google my suggestion to see how many places over there, in all price ranges, are applying this mode of business.
Go on a cruise to experience it personally.
Lastly, and re Majorca, I spent last year’s Christmas there. I had Christmas lunch and Boxing Day lunch at two different venues.
Both offered an early sitting (1:00) and a later one (3:00). Neither was what you would call cheap, one being a well known yacht club.
This way, they not only maximised profits, but also made it possible to fulfill their customer’s desire to dine on one of the busiest days of the year. So everybody was happy.
An anecdote. Quite a few years ago I was chatting with Pedro, the owner of Can Pedro in Genova. He confided to me that one of the reasons he made his fortune was because his English and German clients arrived around 7 and left around 9, just when his local clients started to arrive. His staff, although having to work longer shifts were over the moon with the tips received.
His bank manager was even happier, having to designate a walk in safe, just for him.
I'm one of those despicable "citizens of nowhere" (in other words, "not English").
Richard first implied it was something that he wished to avoid. Now after finding out its an "English thing". he suddenly likes the idea. But frankly, it solves a nonexistent problem (England excepted?). People generally leave when they're done. In most of the world anyway.
And really, if they're finished, but don't leave or order anything else (which I'd think would be awfully boring) then it wouldn't be unreasonable to ask them to free up the table. But I don't think that happens often (in most of the world). It just doesn't make shy sense.
I already said I'd take Richard's word for it that it's common in England (I wouldn't know). It's just that it's not anywhere else. Especially here.
Don't you just want to punch Morgan Welshman? Thinks he is a man of the world but is actually very insular and Welsh.
Morgan WilliamsDon’t believe me ? Then just Google Time Limits restaurants.
If I were the owner/chef of a very much sought after restaurant, I would definitely consider introducing this policy in Spain, as obviously as well to Mallorca.
North Europeans like to eat earlyish whilst Spanish a lot later. If a restauranteur knows that he can count on having tables at his disposal after the first sitting, then he could double his turnover without having extra running costs, which would mean better prices for his customers, and more tips for his staff.
My local barber has been using this business plan for years. And so do, apparently, ladies who won’t take sterling for their services, the cost of which you seem to know quite a lot about.
Richard PearsonI was talking about here. It doesn't happen here. end of.
I visit the states about once per year, and haven't heard of it there either. And nobody I know over there has heard of it either. And we all know the obsessive customer service orientation of US restaurants.
But I haven't been to England in many years, so I'll take your word for it that it's common in England. Nonetheless, it does illustrate your insularity when you presume that if it happens in England, it must be much worse everywhere else.
Charles Dalrymple-ChumleyMy guess would be that it is more prevelant amongst the more highly paid local executive and burocracy classes.
On the other hand, I have been told by people who should know that journalists are the worst offenders.
Ulla JacksonBefore I answer, why don’t you ask the same question to a few restauranteurs and see what they say.
Where did I say that I thought that the Spanish weren’t honest ? I said that getting a prompt reply to an email in Spain is nothing short of a miracle. Except from companies based in Cataluña who are generally very assiduous in replying the same working day.
PS Re honesty, and not wanting to start an international incident, I think I can safely say that the corruption in Spain is far, far higher than that found in the U.K..
Morgan WilliamsYou have obviously not dined out at top notch U.S. restaurants recently. Or maybe not at all.
And many London ones offer an early (7pm) seating on the condition that the table is free by 9pm.
I will repeat what you generally tell me.
Do some research and then let me know what you find.
Richard PearsonWhat? being "kicked out when your time is up"? Never heard of that.
ok, maybe that happens in England, I don't know... but it sure as hell never happens here.
Or perhaps you just made that up?
Ulla JacksonThey *are* foreigners. And you know how foreigners are 🧐