Let me first say that servers are working for tips, meaning that if you are unsatisfied with your dining experience their income is compromised. And when I say income, yes, I mean INCOME. Servers do not get paychecks. Our hourly salary here in the beautiful state of Texas is under three dollars, so after taxes come out that paycheck is a big fat $0.00. But I’ll let the Bitchy Waiter handle that discussion from here. Rant aside, you can trust that your server will work their hardest to make sure your food comes out just the way that you want it and that it tastes great. Not because they care (at least not that much) but because they want your cold hard cash.
Now I have never seen any server or kitchen staff spit in a guest’s food or participate in any kind of act that you may have seen on tv or heard horror stories about. You could be the worst, most picky, patronizing, and obnoxious guest ever to step foot into a food service establishment and your food will probably still be safe to eat. Watch out though, because you can guarantee the entire restaurant staff has thoroughly discussed what an awful human being you are after you left. You will not be greeted with a smile the next time you come back.
(As for hand washing, we could all probably do it more often. And by all of us, I mean teachers, lawyers, and plumbers too. But don’t worry a little germs never hurt anyone.)
Trust me, nobody ever wants to have a guest die at their table. Or be responsible for any type of lawsuit that may come after feeding you something you’re allergic to. If you have even the slightest allergy you can guarantee the kitchen has been notified and every effort has been made to make sure your food is safe. BUT DON’T ASSUME YOUR FOOD IS SAFE IF YOUR ALLERGEN IS NOT LISTED IN THE INGREDIENTS. Cross contamination is always possible and you don’t know what little spices go into every dish. Even if you’re allergic to a rare seed found only in the southern regions of Zimbabwe, just let someone know.
So now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, back to the whole “cold hard cash” thing. The higher your bill is, the higher you tip. Therefore, your server will say whatever necessary and employ a range of tactics to get you to order that filet mignon rather than a burger. The specials will always be “amazing” and he or she will always push you to have an appetizer, dessert, or another cocktail. There are plenty of tactics such as suggestive selling and tricky wording to make you feel pressured into spending more. So, in that sense you can’t always rely on your server for complete honesty.
We are not just servers, we’re salesmen.