Tonight I went for a few drinks and a meal with a friend in a well known bar / restuarant chain. I've eaten in a number of these restuarants but not this particular one but have always found their staff helpful with regards to allergies until tonight...
I chose a pasta dish from the menu and wanted to check the ingredients for the pasta sauce. When the waitress came to take our order I asked her about the ingredients. Her response was 'how would I know?' Slightly taken aback I asked if she could speak to the chef and find out, the response was 'well the kitchen is very busy tonight we had a large group booking arrive just before you.'
What I wish I had done was pay for my drink and leave and choose one of the many other restaurants in York. Instead I went very red and flustered and my friend who was rather annoyed asked if we could speak to the manager. Thankfully he was much more accommodating and gave us the informationg we needed, served us personally and gave us a discount off our meal for the upset that was caused. I thought I had got over my embarassment at asking about ingredients etc but it really isn't helpful when people respond with such blatant ignorance, thats where my embarassment came from in the first place!
Sorry for this little rant but I really think that some people just have no idea how difficult it is to eat out when you have complex food allergies. You would think however that restuarant staff would be experienced in this matter and be helpful and accommodating. I don't think I'll be eating there very often!