On Fox’s “Kitchen Makeovers” this past Friday night, high-strung chef Gordon Ramsay exhibited a disturbing behavior — one that's fast becoming a trend on restaurant makeover shows: The man spat food into his open hand.
Ramsay was in the midst of his usual blitzkrieg, this time at a soul food restaurant in a suburb of Pittsburgh. While tasting dishes to “test” the menu, he became enraged at how dry the Southern fried chicken was. And promptly spat it out.
Now, while eating around Long Island, I’ve had to swallow much worse than dry chicken. And, on very rare occasion, not swallow. But, even when confronted with fowl truly foul, I’d raise a napkin to my mouth and discreetly deposit the food into it. No drama involved.
And also no play for TV ratings. Ramsay’s not the only one stooping to uncivilized behavior to get TV audiences eating out of his food-soiled hand. Robert Irvine of Food Network’s “Restaurant Impossible” spews regularly. And with great flourish.
So, what’s the harm? Only this: We may be raising a new generation of diners who are well-schooled in all things epicurean but ignorant — and ill-informed — when it comes to the most basic table manners.
What’s next for tomorrow’s restaurants? Spittoons?