Give Me More Bread: The Startling Decline of "Free Bread" at Restaurants
Look at the success of a restaurant, and I'll show you restaurant that gives out a vast amount of bread. This use to be a social norm and a widely accepted practice from several restaurants. I show up to a restaurant to be "stuffed." That requires my main course AND bread. People who know me will know that I will not cough up $9.99 for a mediocre appetizer. Free bread is a necessity for any Godby. If you consider yourself a Godby, there has to be at least three empty baskets sitting on your table. Rolls, biscuits or sliced bread, it doesn't matter. If it's a simple carbohydrate, a Godby will devour it.
My wife and I went to an amazing restaurant at the Biltmore in Asheville, NC. The menu had a breathtaking pork cheek that melted in your mouth, a halibut that was cooked to perfection and a "s'more cake" that I will fight to say that it was the best dessert I have ever had. The meal for the both of us was pricy, I didn't mind. I paid for a great atmosphere, great service and an incredible meal. THIS though sent me over the edge.
The server told us that we would get bread. Like I stated earlier... I like bread. I see the server return with a massive metal bowl of bread. My pupils dilate, my heart rate sky rockets and my mouth waters. However, he didn't set the bowl on the table, he kept it tucked like a football. He pulled out his tongs and asked my wife what piece would she like and then asked me. The primal instincts in my brain wanted me to grab for that bread and strip that metal bowl from the server. One... small... piece. I'm paying that much for a meal, and you are only going to give me one, tiny square of bread to reserve my hunger? How dare you!
I thought this was just a onetime occurrence. There is no way that this could happen to us again. WRONG! We went to another spot in Asheville that bread was on the menu, but you had to pay to get it! Yes, you read that right. You had to PAY to get bread. $6.99!!! Excuse me?! I don't care how good your bread is, you don't charge me for it! I knew Asheville, NC was a little bit different and "hipster-y" than Lexington, but my goodness; Asheville is hurting people.
To every restaurant owner who is reading this: I'm begging you. Do not ration your bread. If you are a restaurant that doesn't serve bread, I pray you turn to compassion and make bread a staple to your core values as an establishment. Don't be on the wrong side of history.