Chicago Sun-Times
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Never overlook a restaurant bathroom

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Do you judge a restaurant by its bathroom?

I do, which puts me solidly in the majority, according to this Detroit Free Press story. I make it a point to visit the loo on my first visit to a restaurant as a scouting mission of sorts a/ to see what degree of cleanliness we're dealing with, b/ to check out all the stylish fixtures that are so much nicer than those in my own home and, of course, c/ to do what nature requires. (Have to add, however, that I never gone so far as to pull a Jimmy Fallon.)

If the restaurant's dining room is the first impression, its bathroom certainly makes the lasting one. You pay money and expect a certain level of excellence; the restaurant's job is to deliver that to you.

That said, one of my most beloved restaurants in Chinatown, Tin Yen (R.I.P.), had a bathroom in its basement that would send shivers down your spine. Cramped. Ripe. Dingy. And yet, I went back to the restaurant again and again and again. (Come to think of it, the one time I went to the bathroom at Tin Yen was the last. I must've just held it all those other times.)

We all have our levels of tolerance. What's yours?

1 Comment

I avoid restaurant bathrooms, if I can, even the nice ones. But, I do like to check out hotel lobby bathrooms, esp. the 5 star hotels.

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Janet Rausa Fuller

Sun-Times Food editor Janet Rausa Fuller is always thinking about her next meal.

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This page contains a single entry by Janet Rausa Fuller published on April 13, 2009 11:08 AM.

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