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Monday, May 21, 2007

Not so fine dining

Frank Bandura, the financial director of the restaurant chain Carluccio’s, says that the company’s policy of paying staff £1.60 an hour below the national minimum wage is fair because, “the way we remunerate encourages [our staff’s] best efforts”.

Well, Mr Bandura, how about I halve your wages for a year? You know, just to make sure you’re performing to the best of your abilities?

Mr Bandura also says that several members of the chain’s waiting staff actually take home salaries above the minimum wage, thanks to the tips staff are given by paying customers.
I think it’s less important who pays,” he opines.

Is that right? So it is the job of restaurant diners in London – already one of the most expensive cities in the world in which to eat out – to tip staff NOT because of the good service they may provide, but in order to compensate the restaurant management for paying its staff near-illegal wages? And this is on top of the already grossly inflated prices we’re meant to pay for the actual food itself?
Righto. I’m glad we’ve got that sorted.

Course, for anyone keen on Italian food who happens to find all this rather distasteful, the food at Strada is cheaper and just as palatable as at the disappointingly-average Carluccio’s. Funnily enough, the staff seem happier, too….


Michael said...

I love Strada. There's one next to me in Wimbledon that I can't stay away from. To top it all off, my gym has introduced a 20% discount for all members. Ironic really because I go to the gym to work off all those Strada calories. In-between using my 20% Strada discount and exercising, I don't have much time for anything else.

A bit off topic but I just wanted to say all that :)

Jo said...

20% off at the gym for eating pizza?

That's nearly as mental as, say, Walkers crisps sponsoring school sports activities (eat 128 bags of crisps and get a basketball, FREE!!!!).