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Missing in Action: Table Salt


Yesterday on his personal blog, Michael Bauer, the restaurant critic for the San Francisco Chronicle, made a very interesting point. According to Bauer, salt has gone missing from restaurant tables: "In the last week I've been to three places where I had to ask for salt." When I started to think about restaurants I recently visited, I realized he was right! It's no longer standard for a salt and pepper shaker to be on each table. Chefs may argue that the salt is missing from tables because the dish is properly seasoned, but Bauer begs to differ:

It smacks of arrogance on the part of the chef. This implies that the chef knows what's best, and the customer should accept it. It also subtly implies the chef doesn't care if diners are pleased.

Although I don't mind if a table lacks salt, the debate is pretty interesting. What do you think of Bauer's claim? Have restaurants in your neck of the woods banished salt? Does a chef's decision to remove salt from the tables make him arrogant?

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