Q & A
you are on television, doesnít the owners know who you are and
make the food better than normal?
A. Not really. If someone recognizes
me, I may get better service but the Chef is not going to
change the recipe on my account. I always look around me and
see what the service and food is like for everyone else and if
I get special treatment, I take it into consideration and it
does not have any effect of the type of review I write.
How does one become a restaurant critic?
A. In order to be what I feel is a
"credible" restaurant critic, the following attributes should
be considered: 1. You must have a love affair with food, 2.You
should be able to be objective, 3. And lastly, you should have
a good understanding of the restaurant business and of the
various aspects of food preparation. Having a Master of Social
Work degree has helped me to be an objective reviewer and the
7 years of restaurant experience as well as taking 11/2 years
of Restaurant Management and Chefís Training classes has also
helped me to become what I consider myself to be, a fair and
honest restaurant critic (Eating at over 1,200 restaurants and
sampling over 12,000 dishes also has helped). I also feel that
one should not take themselves so serious as to think that
they "know it all". Remember, this is about food, not politics
Criteria Did I Use To Choose These Restaurants?
the past 13 years, I have had many people ask me where
can I get the best pizza? Steak? Chinese food? Etc.
Choosing my favorite restaurants favorite dish is no
easy task. There are many things to consider besides the
food. There is the service, the ambiance, the attitude,
the value etc.
you glance over the pages, you will notice that some of
the more "visible" or even what some people
feel are the "best" restaurants are not on my
site. This could be a result of the restaurant having a
"bad attitude", overpriced entrees or just
plain great marketing-ordinary food.
hate restaurants that have lousy attitudes, I hate
restaurants that "gouge" the customers and I
hate being lied to by restaurants saying they use
product like real crab only to find out it was imitation
crab. You can be assured that all of the restaurants
that appear on my web site do not have bad attitudes,
the prices of the food is honest, they do not lie about
the ingredients that are described in their menus and
each owner really cares about providing quality food and
pleasing each customer that enters their establishment.
eaten in over 1,200 restaurants and sampling over 7,500
dishes, I feel I have a good understanding of what good
is and what not-so-good is. All of the restaurants that
appear on this site were hand selected by me.
you review each restaurant write-up, you will learn why
I selected the restaurant, my favorite dishes, an
extensive list of services and information about the
restaurant and some extra features like coupons,
directions to the restaurant and a full listing of the
my intention that this dining guide will lead you to
many restaurants that you are not familiar with and help
make your next dining experience more enjoyable with the
information provided in each review.
I must remind you that these are "my
TIPPING Tipping- the word TIP or
"To Insure Promptness" is a very misunderstood concept
that many people misuse. There are many misconceptions
regarding when and who to tip and the right amount. I
believe that if the service is good, the server is
friendly and if the server goes out of their way to make
your dining experience that much better, a tip of 20% or
more is appropriate. If on the other hand the server is
just going through the motions, I have no problems leaving
a smaller than normal tip but, always tell the manager or
owner about the problems you had with the server. I
realize that a good portion of a serverís wages is derived
from tips however, that server will never get any better
if people just give the server a tip regardless of the
quality of service or their attitude. Another thing to
remember is that almost all servers split their tips with
the "Bussers", Bar Tenders & Food Runners. A 15% tip is
appropriate for "okay" service. I also believe that
servers at a self service buffet restaurant should receive
a tip according to the quality of service and attention
paid to you. This can range from 10% to 20 %. When
figuring out how much you should tip a server, the
amount given should be figured out BEFORE the tax is added
onto the bill.
Copyright © 2002-04 AllanBorgen.com
All rights reserved.
Q & A
|Q. How do you pick the restaurants you
A. I usually pick the restaurants to review by
referrals by my viewers or readers, by stopping into a
restaurant and looking at the menu or by reading other
restaurant review columns.
Q. Do restaurants know when you are going to review them?
A. No..I normally go into a restaurant unannounced, order,
take notes, pay the bill and then ask a million questions and
tell them who I am and what I plan on doing. If I feel that I
might have a problem reviewing them because of a language
problem or other circumstances, I will call ahead and ask
permission. I will then come in unannounced and do the review
later on after talking to them.