Saturday, September 1, 2007

Never Ending Pasta Bowl

Right now at OG we are experiencing the promotion known as NEPB (never ending pasta bowl). This is a once year event where a person can come in and get their choice of pasta (about 8 kinds) and sauces (6 kinds) for $9.95 and get unlimited refills. It's grotesque really. It's a 42 day event that strikes horror in the hearts of all OG servers and is the bane of every OG cooks existence. NEPB can suck away one's will to live.

Is NEPB a good deal? Absolutely. Not only do you get never ending pasta but you still get never ending soup or salad with that (and unlimited breadsticks). It can be pretty stressful to servers though:

Server nightmare 1: The football team. It seems that football teams wanting to shore up on their carbs can come in and almost singlehandedly put a couple of servers into the deepest depths of server hell. Imagine continually trying to fill up a pitcher of water with a hole in it? That is what it is like to serve NEPB to a football team. I have seen servers lose it (snap) and start crying or almost fall down from exhaustion. Nasty.

Server nightmare 2: Impossible man. Every year we get a few of this type who can consume beyond what any human should be able to. After your first full size bowl you get refills in half size bowls. They are smaller but still very filling. The average person will eat maybe one refill and then be in agony. Last year we had a man who had eleven refills! Eleven! The poor server had to get the manager to override the computer as it won't allow you to punch in over 10 refills! Watching someone with this ability is like watching a train wreck in action. You can almost actually hear their arteries clogging up. Terrifying.

Server nightmare 3: Super sensitive guy. Get this, my friend Matt was serving two larger men the other night (one was estimated to be 300 pounds). After the two guests got their first bowl of pasta Matt asked them if they would like a refill. The two got very angry and went to talk to the manager - they thought by asking if they wanted refills Mat was suggesting that they were fat! The manager explained that this was standard practice (anticipating guest needs) but the two were completely offended. Very strange.

Anyway, NEPB is a great deal, so if you must partake, here's a few tips:
1. As a table, as much as possible, order your refills at the same time.
2. If you think you'll want a refill, order it in advance.
3. Realize that if you order refills you are adding a lot to your servers workload and tip accordingly.
4. Ask your server to pack up any refills that you don't finish - this is allowed!
5. If you can't decide between two sauces ask for two - this can be done. I recommend the fettuccine with both the 5 cheese marinara and the Alfredo sauces.
6. Really like a sauce? Ask for extra - there is no charge.


Jay Boaz said...

I was one of the poor souls once who had to serve a football team...server hell is a good way to put it. Those of you who have never experienced the horror have no idea how bad it is.

One thing I liked about pasta bowl was it got my lunch sales up since I could usually talk people out of soup and salad and into a pasta bowl...often ones they didn't refill.

Still, there is a reason that we launched a celebration of the end of the pasta bowl party years ago called "Death of the Pasta Bowl". :)

I think I may have to stop in for one though next week-end...


Rayna said...

I didn't know that there is an etiquette to eating the NEPB at the OG. Thanks for the information and lessons on how to properly participate in this event. Hope you are not too run off your feet with this event. Have a good one!

Anonymous said...

Make sure you spit the fat pig's second bowl!