Not About Food

Menu Item as "Market Price"

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Menu Item as "Market Price"

link_930 | May 19, 2008 04:10 PM

I went to Bangkok 54, a Thai restaurant in Arlington VA, the other day and ordered their steamed whole rockfish, which was listed as having a "market price." I usually don't order these items due to a variety of reasons, but knowing the average price of rockfish, and the fact that the server noted it would be perfect for two to share having had drinks and appetizers, I went ahead and ordered it. She also noted that it was based on weight, but that the average was around $25. It certainly made for a delightful dinner.

However, the price on the check listed it as $40. For one rockfish only large enough for two people's entrees (small eaters at that). I was somewhat miffed at the price. I assumed it would be around $20-$25 when I received the dish, including a 50% mark-up. There wasn't anything particularly extravagant about it; it came with the standard chili lime sauce. This experience only further justified not ordering "market price" items.

I do know my fish, and this certainly was not worth $40. I did not say anything due to the circumstance and ended up paying for the both of us out of embarrassment. What's the deal with "market prices" at restaurants? Should we assume a 100% mark-up? I'm having trouble grasping restaurant pricing with these things.

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