A chef in England has spoken out about how the reviews site Trip Advisor destroys the lives of people who work in restaurants.
Speaking to the Eastern Daily Press, Norfolk-based chef Charlie Hodson, argues that the website, which allows members of the public to leave unmoderated reviews for places and attractions, including restaurants, without having to prove that they’ve visited, is “archaic and bullying.”
“What some people leave on there is killing people in the hospitality world, and that’s not a false claim,” says the chef, who’s previously opened up about battling mental ill health. “You get people who say they had a lovely meal, give you a generous tip and you go home feeling like you and your team gave an amazing service … then they annihilate you. I just don’t understand it.”
Hodson says the site was initially welcomed by the industry, but is now loathed: “Chefs can absolutely handle constructive criticism – the only way they can develop is through constructive criticism - but not through slating someone working there,” he says. “You work 120 hours a week, have your life savings invested in a place and work non-stop to make sure what you put on a plate is the best it can be, and you see personal, spiteful comments at the end of it … it destroys lives.”
Staff shortages are hitting the hospitality sector hard, prompting some restaurants to look outside the industry to train those without restaurant experience for life in the kitchen. Andrew Friedman finds out more.
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