Many people know what it is like to go to a fine dining restaurant and find that despite almost everything being perfect, the experience is let down by one small factor such as poor service or a noisy atmosphere.
When choosing a fine dining restaurant, there are four main factors you should consider. Each contributes to a memorable fine dining experience – service, food and wine, ambiance and location. If your chosen fine dining restaurant gets the combination correct, you’ll have a memorable experience and one that you will want to repeat!
Food and wine
This is number one because of course, you go to a restaurant to eat and drink! There are many factors that contribute to the quality of the food and wine. First up is quite simply, the taste of the food. This will depend on the chef and can be hard to judge – word of mouth or ratings from critics are often a good place to check. The other factor is selection; having a broad selection in the menu and room for changes such as specific dietary needs and requirements will mean that everyone at you table can find something to their liking. And don’t forget the wine or drink selection – it is important that a fine dining menu includes a range of drinks to complement the meals.
Even some of the best restaurants can be tainted by poor lighting, noisy rooms or a poor choice of music. It is a fine balance – not too dark, not too bright, not too noisy to talk, but not too uncomfortably quiet! Everyone has their own preferences depending on the occasion, so the best way to check can be by visiting the restaurant to book in person, and by selecting your table to ensure that you are in a place you will be comfortable.
Not every great restaurant needs a great view, but it can certainly help. The location can depend on the occasion – you may want a romantic beachside or rural escape, or you may be looking for a bustling, lively inner-city restaurant. Choose a restaurant that has a location suited to your tastes and you will have a more comfortable and enjoyable dining experience.
Some diners like to have attentive, high-standard service with the likes of a Sommelier, while others prefer to be left in privacy. However, having your water topped up, empty plates taken away and orders taken without too long a wait (and without being rushed) is an important factor in any restaurant. Waiters, bartenders and maitre d’ awards run annually – so if you are looking for superior service, do your research online to find a restaurant known for their high standards.