We’ve all had that experience of sitting at the bar at the start of the night and then moving to a table later on. When that happens, there’s always the question of whether you should close your bar tab and open a separate bill at the table, or if you should carry that tab over along with you. Well, we finally have the definitive answer, so you don’t have to guess anymore!
The Preferred Course of Action
Restaurant workers tend to prefer for diners to close out their tabs whenever they leave an area, and open a new tab in their new section. Of course, if it doesn’t make sense to do that, there’s no need. For example, if you sat somewhere, received a glass of water, and then moved tables, no one expects you to bother tipping the server just for bringing a single glass of water. However, if you spent half your night at the bar and then moved to a table, it’s polite to close your tab and open a new one with your new server.
The Reason Why
The reason restaurant workers prefer this course of action is so that they don’t have to divide up their tips. It can become extremely complicated to figure out who did more work and who deserves more of the tip, possibly even leading to heated arguments. If you close out your tab at the bar, and tip the bartender, and then do the same at the table, there won’t be any disagreements between the servers.
Of course, it’s not your job as the diner to make the servers’ lives easier, but it’s certainly a nice thing to do as a human being. And, it’ll likely make you that restaurant’s favorite customer.
Japanese cuisine is having a shining moment in the culinary world. Noodles, especially ramen, have become a staple across the US, going from a cheap college meal to a sophisticated internationally-revered dish. Alongside ramen, soba and udon noodles have also gained prominence and are the very backbone of Japanese cuisine. However, Japanese cuisine is all about delicacy and balance, and it might not be so easy to whip these up at home! Here are some expert tips on how to slurp these three noodles for the best cultural culinary experience.
Ramen’s popularity has grown by leaps and bounds in the past decade, with more than 40 ramen restaurants recognized in the Michelin Guide. Chef Masaharu Morimoto of Momosan, New York, gushed about seeing his native dish become an international sensation. He had three major tips for people when it came to this dynamic and customizable dish.
Firstly, he recommends resting the noodle dough to achieve that perfect chewiness and springy texture. He also suggests a balancing technique; the heavier the broth is, the thicker the noodles need to be. And lastly, and most importantly, he states that the ramen is best eaten piping hot, when they’re still fresh and steaming.
These buckwheat noodles are a Japanese staple, and the preparation varies from region to region as you travel in the country. Chef Furukawa Takashi, from the famed Ryan restaurant in Tokyo, is an expert in all things soba. According to this master chef, the key to perfect soba noodles is using high-quality, fresh buckwheat flour. It’s also all about speed and even using the right water ratio according to the weather!
Chef Shivji Kotani of Brooklyn’s Uzuki restaurant believes that making soba is a meditative activity, so you should never force or control the ingredients. For serving, the noodles can be eaten hot or cold with sobayu and dashi stock dipping sauce.
For making your own Udon noodles, chef Naoyuki Yanighara has some guidance to give. He advises rinsing the noodles in cold water post-boiling to make them firm and crunchy. Next, he says to reheat before adding warm dashi broth.
These noodles got their name in the 14th century when wheat flour was also known as udon flour. Talking about the culture of the noodles, he states that the preparation is different from Tokyo to Kyoto and is based on the seasonings and dashi used. While making the dashi, he suggests using only the umami extract from each ingredient so that you only get the dashi and none of the off-flavor.