We had a celebratory luncheon at New York French restaurant La Grenouille among the old money crowd. One woman had a hat too big for the Kentucky Derby.
Excellent food, and for the neighborhood and setting, the lunchtime $60 prix fixe for choice from the full menu of appetizer, main (only two had surcharge) and dessert where they specialize in giant souffles is not unreasonable. Plus you get little cookies and flavor-packed truffles at the end.
My wife had not prepped me, I had not researched, so it was one of those embarrassing moments when you are handed your jacket when you walk in. Good thing I had a button down shirt.
Either another anachronism, or a new trend, the bill left me puzzled, with the following lines:
- Waiter Tip
- Captain Tip
We encountered a series of old-timer staff who all retained thick homeland accents. They were notable for pushing the white asparagus special. We have been duped by that in Germany/Austria/Switzerland and will not again pay $20+ for asparagus drained of flavor.
A quick search online show lots of confusion and varied approaches. I hadn’t a clue so put 15% for waiter and 5% for captain.
When I wrote about the Australia add-on (or nickel-and-dime) culture, a number of retorts were about US tipping practices and its spread to more services.
This one seems egregious.
Readers, what’s a diner to do?