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Quality vs. Friendly

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Quality vs. Friendly

avi | Nov 12, 2003 11:16 PM

KANOMWAN, the Thai restaurant on Houston's east side has once again proven to me that the Rudeness As A Guide To The Quality Of Food Rule is as relevant and as true as ever.

It's simple, really: In order to survive, let alone prosper, a restaurant must have good food or good service; both if possible. Fluctuations of these elements can mean success or failure. For instance, if the service is great but the food so-so, the restaurant could still make it if no appreciable competition exists in the area.

KANOMWAN is proof that great food can overcome lousy service. The behavior of that silent, brooding, snarling fellow who owns it and takes the orders is living proof that great food can overcome even the nastiest service. Perhaps its isolated location with very little competition helps also.

The Soup Nazi is a kitten next to this guy. Try changing your order from beef to pork as His Highness stands at your table and you will, like me, earn a silent snarl, an extreme frown. Inquiring about the soup de jour earns a growl and a finger pointing to the menu. Thank him and be totally ignored. Pay for your meal but don’t expect a “Thank you, come again”. No eye contact, expressionless. It’s more like: “So what if you’ve paid me, who gives a shit?” I know he’s not mute – he spoke to the servers.

What is the matter with this guy? Is he a fugitive military dictator that was set up in business by the CIA? Did he run a torture chamber somewhere? … well, I do exaggerate a bit. But really, if KANOMWAN‘s food was not so wonderful, it would have closed long ago. That is, unless the east side lunch crowd who jam the place are hopelessly masochistic. As for me, I say don’t do me any favors. I’d rather be served crap from a friendly hand anytime.

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