Allergy Cards & Chanterelle

We have our work cut out for us.

For months now, several executive chefs have said to me, “Use the allergy card , we want you to”. And then Ian Tomaschik of Chanterelle was interviewed in Grub Street. He typifies the reason why many of us don’t: fear of the dreaded eye roll or worse, the this-must-be-a-joke attitude.

Not good.

Anyone who has an allergy or a special dietary request, this is our task at hand: educate and advocate with charm and persistence.

The customer drives the market; it will change when we demand it must. And the change has already started but clearly there is more work to be done.


Anonymous said…
Nasty boy that Ian! What was the joke about the allergy card and the cookies? Guess my sense of humor needs some tuning up if I ever aspire to be a waiter! I would take it as a compliment to the chef if someone loved the cookies so much they wanted to take them home!
That's too bad about the allergy card. I hope he came back and told the person they are unable to accommodate him. Somehow I fail to see the humor in allergies. Strange sense of humor he has and strange way to give "P.R." for the restaurant. His whole tone was kind of snobby toward his customers.
~M said…
I am gf and I recently e-mailed a new Vietnamese restaurant to see about accomodations. According to Triumph Dining, Vietnamese food is supposed to be the most gluten-free friendly. I e-mail him the card info and ask if I can be accomodated. Nope - they don't think I can eat anything and are too afraid I will be contaminated. Gee, thanks for makng me feel about 2" high. I feel many restaurants view the cards as a lawsuit in the making, instead of a chance to clean their kitchen, review their ingredients, get a great tip, make a customer, and get great word-of-mouth press. Of course, however, I'd rather not get glutenized if they don't feel that they can make a safe meal but I don't think it's THAT hard to do with the detailed Triumph Dining instructions. Good luck!
Vivian Mahoney said…
Very well said. I actually never knew about the allergy card. Thanks for sharing this one.

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