Allergies and Dining Out

Ok, for anyone wandering in here, I am a Cook by Profession.

On most Menu’s these days at any popular Restaurant you will usually see a notation similar to the following:

“If you have any Food Allergies please inform your Server.”

Now something needs to be said about this. If you are eating at any Restaurant and you have a Food Allergy (let’s use SeaFood as an example) and you plan to order a Chicken dish do you need to tell your Server that you are Allergic to SeaFood? Hells YES you do. Seriously..as a Person with Allergies it is YOUR obligation to inform your Server about ANY allergies you may have. Doesn’t matter if all you want is a Glass of Water.

Most Kitchens run with an average of 5 – 9 Cooks at a time working on various meals all at once. If you think that every surface is sanitized after every order you are mistaken and naive. If you believe that every cook washes their hands between every single food item they handle..then you guessed it, mistaken and naive.

Now what DOES happen if you inform your Server that you have a Food Allergy (at least in the Kitchen I work in at any rate and I hope ALL Kitchens are like this) is the Server tells the Cooks and then yes, EVERY thing is Sanitized and washed before that order is made and only untouched ingredients are used because we don’t want to see our Patrons falling over and choking to death in the Restaurant.

So what I am getting at is this: If you have a Food Allergy or know of a Food Allergy for someone in your party PLEASE speak up and make sure the Server knows about it before your party orders. Do it as a public service to Cooks everywhere and Me in particular.

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3 Responses to “Allergies and Dining Out”

  1. so is the basic rule to tell the server you have an allergy so that you know that everything is taken care of with utmost care and sanitation? 😛

  2. @ Yoshi: If by that you mean, ‘So we don’t keel anyone!’ then yes 🙂

  3. So what I am getting at is this: If you have a Food Allergy or know of a Food Allergy for someone in your party PLEASE speak up and make sure the Server knows about it before your party orders. Do it as a public service to Cooks everywhere and Me in particular.

    Amen. Having a nephew that has the “evil” nut allergy – knowing that the micro-trace of it – could kill him; makes me overly sensitive to these type of allergies. Prior to preparing a meal for him or anyone – I always ask if there is anything that they might be allergic to or if they just don’t like something. It pays to make the person you are feeding/serving comfortable with the food that you have prepared/created for them. Afterall, why cook if you don’t want to share what you create?

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