At Your Service.

Today was my first day of my LAST freshman class!  After spring break I will officially be a sophomore, and before I know it I will be DONE in May!  Where has the time gone?

The class we started today is called Essentials of Dining Room, where we learn everything there is to know about front-of-the-house service.  I have been dreading this class since I started school in October.  Check out the freshman dining room below…

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In this class, we learn all about food service, and we are trained as waitresses, hostesses, etc. – but here is the kicker.  We have to serve actual students – kids from other classes – who are assigned to eat in the dining room based on their current class.  I have eaten in this dining room on two different classroom rotations, but I’ve avoided the service end until now.  I would rather serve the public from the streets of Charlotte and than serve other students!  At least we get the first two days to practice – we don’t start real live service until day three.

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Today was a slooooooow day of lecture and demonstrations – not exactly the lively day I needed after getting only an hour of sleep.  All things considered though, I think I did pretty well.  First off, we learned about all the different flatware, and practiced a few styles of napkin folds.

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Notice that we have different dining room uniforms?  We wore these for our bartending class too (a long time ago).  They are super uncomfortable – I hate tucking my shirt in!  I don’t know how some men wear suits to work every day. 

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The next thing we learned was called pincing – a type of service used to place bread on plates using a fork and a spoon as tongs.  But we didn’t have bread, so we practiced with lemons!

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One of my classmates grabbed my camera, so you actually get to see me in action for once!  Trying to control the lemons with one hand is harder than it looks!

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Then we practiced carrying trays with plates up and down the hallways.  I was very nervous about dropping mine!

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Here Marie is modeling our lovely dining room uniforms – check out those pants!

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By the time class was over, I was officially exhausted.  I made it through my afternoon class feeling a little bit like a zombie.  I stopped at Earth Fare on my way home to pick up some oatmeal, and also grabbed these faux cheeses to try.  Casey has been wanting a non-dairy cheese option, so we were hoping these might be good alternatives.  Taste tested with my favorite TJ’s crackers.

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First up – soy vegan cheddar “cheese” – oh WOW.  How did this stuff ever get approved and released in a grocery store?  We each took one bite and almost spit it out.  I was really angry that I paid $3 for this – the entire block went into the garbage can.  Some of the most disgusting stuff I’ve ever tasted. 

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Our second selection – mozzarella style almond cheese – was MUCH better!  It didn’t taste exactly like cheese, but it was a much closer comparison, and it had good creamy flavor.

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At least one out of two was a success!

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I am going to call it a SUPER early night and head to bed.  I have so much sleep to catch up on!  I hope that last night’s lack of sleep doesn’t throw my entire week off.  Off to catch up on some zzzzzzzzzzzzzz….