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Dining in London vs. NYC (so far)


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#16 voyager

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Posted 28 May 2017 - 08:37 PM

You all sound so old

:lol:    While in complete agreement with them, I was thinking the same thing.


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#17 Lex

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Posted 28 May 2017 - 10:13 PM

You all sound so old


I'd be hurt by that by that but I know how old you are. You're one of us.
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#18 joethefoodie

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Posted 29 May 2017 - 08:41 AM

Yeah, older...and wiser... in how we wish to spend our money at what type of establishments.



#19 voyager

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Posted 29 May 2017 - 12:52 PM

Yeah, older...and wiser... in how we wish to spend our money at what type of establishments.

:+1:  And in how we wish to spend our limited dining opportunities, especially when visiting another city.


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not my monkeys.


#20 Wilfrid

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Posted 01 June 2017 - 08:48 PM

But I didn't like music in restaurants when I was young.

 

Lex makes a good point.  How often does the music actually improve the dining experience?  I mean, yes, it has happened; I have left a restaurant saying, "Wow, that was unexpectedly good music."  But probably like three or four times in ten years.

 

Usually one hopes for not too loud or too dumb, which is a low benchmark.



#21 Sneakeater

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Posted 01 June 2017 - 08:53 PM

The Grill (NYC) would have been worse without the music.


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#22 paryzer

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Posted 01 June 2017 - 08:58 PM

I enjoy the Motown & Atlantic Records music that Tillie's plays in NJ (but that is probably the exception to the rule).


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#23 Rich

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Posted 01 June 2017 - 11:41 PM

The Grill (NYC) would have been worse without the music.


Probably not. Three very knowledgeable people (friends) going at different times on different days have been less than enthusiastic about the place - and I cleaned that up.

Still think this is the prime place to review without going. Could set a new trend in the world of restaurant reviews.

#24 paryzer

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Posted 01 June 2017 - 11:53 PM

 


Still think this is the prime place to review without going. Could set a new trend in the world of restaurant reviews.

 

Didn't Pete Wells sort of just do that with Noma Tulum ;)


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#25 Rich

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 01:21 AM

Yes he did - covers more ground for less money. Leave it to the Times to begin a new trend.

 

Think I'm going to review St. John next week because I possess a wealth of knowledge about sainthood.



#26 Orik

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 02:50 AM

But I didn't like music in restaurants when I was young.

 

Lex makes a good point.  How often does the music actually improve the dining experience?  I mean, yes, it has happened; I have left a restaurant saying, "Wow, that was unexpectedly good music."  But probably like three or four times in ten years.

 

Usually one hopes for not too loud or too dumb, which is a low benchmark.

 

I think there are two issues here - one is, as you've pointed out, whether the soundtrack is somehow wonderful or wonderfully matched with the dining experience. This is indeed about as rare as a wine pairing that  makes you want to kiss the somm, and as with wine pairings it is rarely the memorable part of your meal. I use wine pairing because it's another example of an accompanying service where products not made by the restaurant are offered in succession in such a way that supposedly enhances the meal and because historically it also wasn't anywhere near as common as it's become recently. 

 

The second issue, though, is whether the music improves the experience (remembering that an improvement is also making less bad, not just more good) in ways that are not directly memorable - for example does it reduce the anxiety of the first diners to show up for service in an empty room or left last? Does it allow a kitchen to run machines that would otherwise be too noisy? Does it mask nearby conversation sufficiently so that what people would like to be private remains private? At the end of the night do more people have a positive memory than they would otherwise because they ended up humming along (or if sufficiently drunk, singing along)? I think those are all likely outcomes  in a restaurant today (again, of course excepting places designed for quiet enjoyment or counter banter), and that's even before getting into age group selection and active choices to target specific diners, etc. 

 

Personally I don't particularly care and in general I prefer a quiet environment, but in practice if a quiet environment is not possible then music seems like a better option than a  Pacojet running or Americans screaming or even a too quiet environment of an empty room with a bunch of waiters standing around... 

 

I don't think Lex is making any argument here except for the usual "Lex doesn't like it so it's no good" - which is why music in  and hats on bars are fine, music in restaurants not so, and smartphones are for kids today (oh, wait...).


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#27 Wilfrid

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 06:41 PM

You distinguish the issues well: my only reservation is that in many cases the music makes people talk louder, and if the music is loud enough, people then start screaming. It tends not to mask the screaming, sadly.



#28 joethefoodie

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 06:55 PM

You distinguish the issues well: my only reservation is that in many cases the music makes people talk louder, and if the music is loud enough, people then start screaming. It tends not to mask the screaming, sadly.

And then add in the drinking, and all hell breaks loose!



#29 Rich

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 08:14 PM

Here is my St. John Review:

 

All the fish he sold were quite fresh and priced fair. He wrote one of the four New Testament gospels, so it was impossible for the church not to make him a saint. And a lot of popes (23 to be exact) have been named after him, but none of them have become saints. All good. Highly Recommended!!!



#30 mongo_jones

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Posted 02 June 2017 - 08:54 PM

there has never been a dining experience quite as incongruous as eating bad thai food in boulder in 2003 while the first velvet underground album played in the background. bland, overly thin curry to the strains of "venus in furs".


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