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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Unexpectations

"Hospitality is making your guests feel at home, even though you wish they were."
 - Author Unknown

"In these days and times, it is truly sad that you can't but help but notice good service and come to simply expect inferior service as the norm."

Hi everyone!  Thanks for visiting my blog site.  It's either Tuesday or the the 2nd Monday of your work week.  It's up to you to decide which you will be having.  Me?  I prefer my glass to be half full.  This way, there is always wine left to be drank.

Tiffany:  Asian Salad with Hummus and Butternut Squash Soup

Oh no!  Not another Green Day Cafe blog post, Chucky!  We get it.  We get it.  Tiffany and you are fond of this place.  'Nuff already, okay?

Well, my friend... This isn't so much a post raving of this most excellent dining establishment but rather how the local businessperson truly wants your business.  Tiffany and I ate there today (when this blog post was typed).  I noticed a couple of things I feel are almost impossible at your local "McChow" mega franchise.

Chucky and Tiffany were lucky enough to find Chad working behind the counter this day.  Chad, who happens to be the proprietor of Green Day Cafe.  We haven't seen Chad in quite some time since he opened his second Orlando location in December (in the Orlando Fashion Square mall).  As a proud owner who knows that he has a niche restaurant that cannot be approached by others, he was quite the pleasure to exchange idle chit-chat.

Ha!  I can only imagine the cogs of his mind churning when he leans over the counter, looks downward, and begins to take the orders from two 4-foot little plastic bubble-headed patrons!  But, again I drift...

Chucky:  Buffalo Hummus Salad & Vegetarian Chili

Since I had the opportunity to be speaking with an actual owner instead of an employee, I noted to Chad that I sure wish he would consider offering the Black Beans and Rice side as a half portion size.  When I order my "Pick Two" of salad and soup, I sometimes would like an additional Black Beans and Rice.  However, in the past I was shocked to see how large the side of Black Beans and Rice.  Alas... Too much to be ordered as a side item.  Besides, Chucky does not have the self-control to eat part, stop and take the remainder home.  I purport to get to this self-control level one day but Green Day Cafe's food is simply too delicious to wait.

Chad paused churning over my suggestion in his mind and offered, "I could sell the Black Beans and Rice in a smaller portion but it wouldn't be half the normal $2.49 price."  "I have packaging costs to consider."

"How much then, may I ask?"

Green Day Café?
The right healthy
food at the
right price(s)!

"I could offer the reduced portion at $1.99." he responded.

"Sold!"  "Please add a cup to my order today."  Know what?  I felt giddy inside.  I'm getting what I truly wanted in today's meal!  Totally awesome!!!

The other nicety today?  Chad had inadvertently forgotten to include the signature dill pickle wedge with the salad and the oyster crackers with the soup.  When he brought our reduced-portion side of Black Beans and Rice to the table, Tiffany politely inquired whether they were out of pickles and crackers.  Chad quickly apologized and promptly left our table side to go get them.  Between you and I, he had only forgotten in the first place because Tiffany and Chucky were sharing the gift of gab when we placed our orders.  

Chocolate Brownie and Carrot Cake
(vegan 100-calorie desserts, compliments of the house)

When Chad returned, he brought us two complementary 100-calorie vegan desserts to try.  One is Chocolate Brownie and the other Carrot Cake.  Tiffany and I plan to enjoy them later this afternoon when we are back home sharing a glass of wine.

I ask you, my friend... Can you get this personal level of service with your run-of-the-mill mega fast-food franchise?  I seriously doubt it.  Perhaps on occasion, if at all.

"Oh?"  The Black Beans and Rice portion?  "Absolutely perfect!"  Not skimpy whatsoever but not a meal-in-itself as is the standard side size.  Sign Chucky a very happy camper indeed.  "Thank you Chad."

This is another added benefit of dealing with your local businessperson.  It keeps the money at home, it's more appreciated, and you simply have to feel better for doing so.  This was truly a win-win scenario.  Chad certainly did not lose money on his sale to Tiffany and I.  Tiffany and I walked away with a reinforced notion that we had chosen the right place to eat on this day.


Whether I am eating at Green Day Cafe on Sunday or Wrap Planet on Saturday, I know that I am at the right place to take my business.  Olga at Wrap Planet encourages you to create your own wrap or salad if you find yourself with an inclination for trying something absolutely different.  Chad at Green Day Cafe will make accommodation to offer a varied menu portion size.  About the biggest change that you are able to get from "McChow" is "Hold the pickles, please."

The next time that you're inside "Red Pony Tails" placing your order do me the favor and try this.  Ask the non-empowered counter person, "Can I have half of the lettuce and perhaps extra onion on that dead-animal burger please?"  "Oh yeah ~ I'd like a half-portion of the small fries if that's possible."  "Thank you."

But... but... whatever you do, please don't hold your breathe thinking that this is going to  happen otherwise you'll be laying on the cold tiled floor awaiting paramedics to resuscitate you.  Remember... You're inside "Red Pony Tails".  You're not at Green Day Cafe or Wrap Planet my friend.  If you click the heels of your red ruby shoes three times and mumble "There's no place like my local dining establishment." you're just going to run the risk of clicking off some ruby red sequins.

Postscript:  Upon sharing a glass of wine and trying Green Day Cafe's 100-calorie vegan desserts, all I can say is "O-M-G are they delicious!"  Tiffany and I have concurred that these sweet delights are worthy of 100-calories treadmill time.  "Thank you Chad!"  If you ever wish to increase sales of these culinary delights all you have to do is give out a small sample with each meal served.  Perhaps a tiny spoonful sample?  Once it lays on the tongue, you'll have a captive customer for life.

Hi-dee hi-dee do-you-have-any-similar-local-business-success-stories-to-share-ho my friend?

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