Recently I went to an establishment (the West Bank Cafe, NYC) that I really liked--and I loved the olives and crisp bread with hummus served instead of traditional white bread and butter before the meal.
As a kid, I adored the Ground Round--and the popcorn on the table, which complimented the silent films that ran on the screens around the room.
One seafood place I used to eat at served oyster crackers, and cocktail and tartar sauce (Evelyn's), as well as corn muffins, and another called Bahr's served buttermilk biscuits & coleslaw. Port wine cheese and pumpernickle bread and breadsticks at another place called Squire's Pub I ate as a kid, as it was quite an 'old style' restaurant that served relish trays with olives and cottage cheese.
I also recall a deli called Richard's that served pickles, elbow mac salad, coleslaw--and
Mints at the end were always a nice touch, and as a kid I also remember getting a chocolate turkey lollypop for free at the end of a meal at Squire's Pub, my favorite part of the night ;)
Any other interesting freebies people have gotten or interesting bread basket substitutes?