Ryan Donovan co-owns Richmond Station, one of Canada's top restaurants. Armed with a philosophy degree, a devotion to whole animal butchery, and a detailed knowledge of the hospitality sector, Ryan speaks about the hospitality workplace and the challenges of running a restaurant when you can't control who gets paid what - particularly when it comes to tipping.
I was a server and I benefited from the hospitality status quo that we discuss. A younger me felt strongly about tipping. But with the Pulitzer winning work by Kathleen Kingsbury and others, along with the simple problem that many restaurants experience of trying to staff a kitchen, there are some gaping holes in that argument. And that change may be afoot.
While I was editing this episode, I got to thinking: Welcome to the Food Court has an unusual format. It's a one-on-one conversation that results in a deliberately long-form discussion, to examine issues in a deep-dive manner. Conversations about food law issues are often reductionist in nature, whereas the subject matter is typically expansive and immersive once that conversation has begun - even WTTFC, at roughly an hour per episode, has to put up boundaries. But at least it allows for something that is more fleshed out and I think episodes like this one benefit from that greatly. Let me know on twitter what you like or dislike. I'm at @gsjameson.
Mentioned in this Episode:
- Andrew Peller Limited and Minister of National Revenue, 2015 TCC329 (CanLII)
- Jeffrey Sachs - Poverty Ladder and further reading
- Danny Meyer - Union Square Hospitality Group
- Protecting Employee's Tips Act
- Trou Normand, Bar Normand, Alinea
- Kathleen Kingsbury, Pulitzer winning editorial series Service Not Included - Boston Globe
- Thomas Piketty, Capital in the 21st Century
- Reservoir Dogs - Tipping Scene - NSFW for cuss-words