I remember being excited for Restaurant Week – way back when. But now? It’s my least favorite week of the year.
In theory, Restaurant Week is a great chance to try hot new places, go for an upscale lunch or get a splurge-y dinner at a decent price. And in the past, I’ve done all three – gone to try a new restaurant or more “adventurous” type of cuisine with a group of girls … met a friend for lunch (much nicer than Potbelly) or had a date night with G.
More recently, I find Restaurant Week to be annoying. Restaurants are overcrowded and kitchens overwhelmed. Wait staff are harried and in some cases surly. They’re working as hard as ever, but making less … I’d be annoyed, too, although I hope more subtle than our server at Charlie Palmer who paused dramatically before snarkily saying “and here’s the Restaurant Week menu.” Sure, we ended up back at Charlie Palmer more than once – full price – and we even laughed at our previous Restaurant Week experience. But still.
It’s like going out on New Year’s Eve or Valentine’s Day. I’m not sure restaurants are really at their best.
And where it started as a way to bring in traffic during traditionally slow periods, Restaurant Week may have outlived its usefulness. Seriously. I’m not sure restaurants are loving Restaurant Week so much anymore. Some limit their offerings to lunch and others have such limited offerings, with a supplement for almost everything, I’m not sure why they do it.
Even for lunch, so many places have regular “business man’s” lunch specials that ….
So this grouchy grandma is just going to stay home during Restaurant Week. And plan to be out in force the last two weeks of August when I might be able to sneak into some high-demand places, while everyone else is at the beach. My personal Restaurant Week(s), if you will.