Australia: Diners discuss disgusting dinners

The Age in Australia posted some crack-up, some gross, reader responses to last week’s "Tables of horror” story, found below. My favourite is Spoon discrimination.

Cockroaches ‘no surprise’
I had a terrible experience at a Fitzroy restaurant. The meal itself was very enjoyable, until we noticed baby cockroaches crawling all over the table, our plate and our food… When I finally did bring it to the attention [of the wait staff] , the waiter initially responded well by apologising and not charging us for the food.
Then he did something that simply made our blood boil: he starting defending it, first by saying that customers should not, under any circumstances, get upset at restaurants! He said we did not understand the food business and his restaurant career was littered with such stories. The building was old, he explained, and therefore cockroaches should be no surprise… The waiter’s arrogance was even more upsetting than the cockroaches.
-Steven Yatomi-Clarke, West Preston

Maggots removed
Four years ago my wife and I went to a well-known vegetarian restaurant and in one of the dishes the dates contained maggots. We discreetly told the waiter, so as not to cause a scene. The dish was removed, but what came back didn’t appear to be a new dish, just the old one with the dates removed. We were given a free mint tea or a free dessert, but no particularly sincere apology from the wait staff for this rather obvious breach of health standards. We have never been back.
-David Sheehan, Oak Park

Too tough for what?
We ordered a lamb curry at a well-known Indian restaurant and the lamb was too tough to eat (this occasionally happens even in good Indian restaurants). On complaining to the waiter, the chef came out to our table, stuck his hand into the bowl, grabbed a piece of lamb, tore it in two with his bare hands and said: "There, it’s not too tough!" We weren’t convinced.
-Michael Rowell, Ararat

Great, but for the worm
WE WENT to a place in Brighton that was recommended. We ordered fresh oysters. We had a few. A friend held one of the oysters, when a pinkish red worm crawled out of the flesh of the oyster, climbed up the shell. She screamed…
-Caroline Arman, East St Kilda

Spoon discrimination
NOT really a tale of horror, but bizarre standards . . . I was recently having a regular lunch at a city restaurant, and on ordering dessert was surprised when the waitress placed a soup spoon in front of me. When I queried it, her reply was, "We don’t discriminate between spoons here, they are all the same to us." There was then a pause, and she rather grudgingly asked me if I wanted her to change it to a dessert spoon — to which I said yes. I was made to feel it was unreasonable to use a dessert spoon! Have the rules of dining changed?
-Claire Mitchell, Northcote