Last Friday, I went out to dinner for a little celebration for one of my friends. Bravo was our destination and in order to go with the social flow, I didn't object.
Now, I must tell you that I have been following a strict, medically supervised diet, in order to achieve my weight-loss goals by next summer*. I am doing really well and am on a program that allows me to eat real food, it's just that I basically need to avoid salt, butter, oil, alcohol, etc... Yes, it's difficult at times, but I have not been successful on other plans in the last year that have been more lenient, and guess what - this is my body and it's really important for me to get to my goal before next summer. For a lot of reasons. That's the background. *Side note, I took a three day break in Chicago if you are wondering how I ate all that delicious stuff from a few blogs ago. I gained 4 lbs that weekend and it was off in 4 days since it was not my usual routine and when I got home, I got RIGHT back to eating well. Totally worth it.*
Now, I researched Bravo's menu ahead of time, like any educated customer would do and found a few items on the menu that would do. Eating out at restaurants is very difficult because you have to 1) explain, 2) trust that they follow directions, and 3) not order the pasta - willpower!
So - we get there, are having a great time and first thing I would like is a cappuccino, nonfat of course. Well, they don't have nonfat milk. Ok. Just water for me then.
Next, I order my meal - salmon, grilled and plain, no salt or oils or butter, steamed veggies. Easy enough, right? I can't have beef since I had it yesterday (beef never two days in a row) and chicken in a restaurant with no oils is hardly edible. However, this is hardly something that i am going to bother the waitress with, plus, why should I have to explain my order and my entire background?
Whew, that went fine.
Meals arrive. Mine is glistening which means one thing....butter. So I take a bite and it's delicious (that's besides the point) and yes, butter, oil, salt. So, I patiently wait for the waitress to check on us. 10 minutes later she comes back and I tried to motion her over to me so I don't have to yell across the table. She stands at the end. I have to yell to her that this has butter on it. She rolls her eyes and says curtly, "I told them not to add butter," and walks away with the dish.
Another 10 minutes later, the manager comes over. She asks, "Who had the special meal?" so again, I have to make a spectacle of myself. She talks across the table from me trying to resolve the issue by telling me that all their meats and vegetables are marinated in oils (to help the flavor) and there was nothing she could do. However, she did offer to get me a salad and a squeeze of lemon. Great!
NOW - I was more than pissed at this point. Just regular etiquette, come over to MY side of the table and talk to me. Apologize. A little, "I'm really sorry," that's genuine goes a long way. None of that. Don't make the entire party listen to our conversation - I really don't want to explain my diet to you and everyone else and I don't want everyone else's opinion about what I can and cannot eat. My friends are supportive, but when it boils down to it:
1) I was really hungry. A plate of plain lettuce would not have done it. Plus, I would have had to have eaten when I got home and I wanted a full meal at one time.
2) I was embarrassed. Sure, I was among friends, but it was embarrassing let me assure you.
3) I was super annoyed. Bravo boasts a gluten free menu online so you would think they might cater to someone ordering something trying to support a healthy lifestyle.
The bottom line? I will never go back to Bravo again to eat, not even after I reach my goal. The silver lining - I went straight to my husband's restaurant at 10:45pm where he made me a lovely grilled fish dinner. Thanks DT, you are the best.