This entry has nothing to do with the food at Maccheroni Republic. Recently, Tom Colicchio was repeatedly quoted for the catch phrase: “people go to restaurants for food and they return for hospitality.”. It was credited first to restaurateur David Meyer. It was retweeted all over Twitter right after Top Chef. Clearly Colicchio nor Meyer run Chinese restaurants, and as much as Craft LA has some of the best service known to LA’s mankind ., non-CCA types can’t afford to constantly return to Craft just for its hospitality. Sometimes, one wants some noodles not in soup form, and ends up dealing with the environs at Maccheroni Republic.
First, Maccheroni Republic is a fantastic addition to DTLA in the way Eat.Americano.Why.Are.There.Periods.In.The.Restaurant.Name, Industriel, Towne, Coco Laurent, Kitchen Table are not: its serve moderately priced tasty food, from a concise menu, in a small space that didn’t require a million dollars to build, and requires a staff no bigger than a basketball team.
During an early evening at Maccheroni, the understaffed team (1 server, 1 owner/manager, 1 busser, and probably 2 cooks and a dishwasher?) was trying to bust its ass to punch out as many dishes as humanly possible while requiring no reservations. It was rather cold out, and the generous patio which doubles the restaurant size was being refused by all warm blooded SoCal types. By 7:30 P.M. it was obvious people are impatiently waiting in the “frigid” LA air, while others had to walk through the cramped space just to check-out at the (non-functioning) bar.
The dining conditions bordered harrowing as the one server exuded a sense of distress that sends tingles down everyone’s spine. Plates were being not-so-gently placed on hard tables everywhere, and the air was thick with an uncomfortable feeling of impending doom. While people were outwardly happy with their meal, a neighbor also remarked on the silent frenzy. This service debacle has been repeated marked elsewhere. Yet rest assured, everyone will go back. Why? Sometimes the food alone is enough to win over any hospitality issues, as nearly every diner familiar with both Koreatown and San Gabriel Valley dining scenes would testify. At certain price points, mayeb it’s just all about the food, not the hospitality.
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