Amtrak Dining

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Dustyroad

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Hatch is the name of a town and valley in southern New Mexico that grows a lot of chilies. It's also a brand name and a kind of shorthand for New Mexican chilies outside the state. In terms of spice they can be mild or hot depending on the growing conditions. That being said this is Aramark we're talking about so I wouldn't worry too much about the spice level since chances are good they'll go with the mild version.


To me it seems they're mainly responding to push-back from customers, advocates, and congresspeople.
 

Dustyroad

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Thanks Devil's Advocate for the great info on the chilie. I'm more hopeful now that the Tamale will just be mild and not too spicy. ;)
 

jis

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I can hardly wait for the return of traditional dining so everybody will have something new to ***** about!
I am afraid you are in for a many months long wait at least as there are nop dates yet for changes to the Eastern LD trains, and even the nature of the change is rumored to be less than full traditional dining when it comes to pass.
 
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Cal

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I am afraid you are in for a many months long wait at least as there are nop dates yet for changes to the Eastern LD trains, and even the nature of the change is rumored to be less than full traditional dining when it comes to pass.
Any specifics? I thought it was normal traditional dining.
 

jis

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Any specifics? I thought it was normal traditional dining.
Current rumor is that it will not be normal traditional dining, but more like what used to be SDS with no cooked to order items. But the final disposition has not been decided on yet, so maybe there is hope. The basic theory seems to be that they do not want to go back to a fully staffed Diner.
 

Cal

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Current rumor is that it will not be normal traditional dining, but more like what used to be SDS with no cooked to order items. But the final disposition has not been decided on yet, so maybe there is hope. The basic theory seems to be that they do not want to go back to a fully staffed Diner.
Is SDS simplified dining, or something similar? And isn't this service similar to what was on the Cardinal or in the CCC's?


If so, it's still a big upgrade from flex.
 

crescent-zephyr

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Current rumor is that it will not be normal traditional dining, but more like what used to be SDS with no cooked to order items. But the final disposition has not been decided on yet, so maybe there is hope. The basic theory seems to be that they do not want to go back to a fully staffed Diner.
Are you talking about the western trains or eastern?
 

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I can hardly wait for the return of traditional dining so everybody will have something new to ***** about!
I can hardly wait for cruises to come back so you can find something else to focus on for a while.
 
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Current rumor is that it will not be normal traditional dining, but more like what used to be SDS with no cooked to order items. But the final disposition has not been decided on yet, so maybe there is hope. The basic theory seems to be that they do not want to go back to a fully staffed Diner.
If the diners are considered "First Class" space and they only serve sleeper passengers then they wouldn't need a full server staff, right? Maybe just one or two servers to bring your meal to the table and clean and set up for the next shift? The Meteor frequently has three sleepers but for the most part other trains have one or two sleepers so the staff could be cut quite a bit I would think.
 

jis

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If the diners are considered "First Class" space and they only serve sleeper passengers then they wouldn't need a full server staff, right? Maybe just one or two servers to bring your meal to the table and clean and set up for the next shift? The Meteor frequently has three sleepers but for the most part other trains have one or two sleepers so the staff could be cut quite a bit I would think.
Currently Meteor and Lake Shore Limited have three Sleepers, the others except Cardinal have two and Cardinal oscillates between one and two. With the V-IIs fully deployed we would expect all trains except Cardinal to have at least three Sleepers, and a couple maybe Four.

I know the urge to be armchair planners is strong amongst us. I'd say wait three months and see what Amtrak comes up with. The primary problem right now is figuring out how to rebuild the infrastructure to support more elaborate dining options, an infrastructure that was carefully dismantled in a systematic way two to three years back.
 

drdumont

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Is SDS simplified dining, or something similar? And isn't this service similar to what was on the Cardinal or in the CCC's?


If so, it's still a big upgrade from flex.
Years ago I rode one of he CHI-NY routes. I don't think it was the Cardinal. Left CHI around 2000-2200 hours, IIRC. the salient points I remember about the trip was that the lone sleeper was the first car behind the engine (You could look out the front door and look at the headlight), noisy as Hell. And the "food" service was really bad. You were individually called to the cafe car at a certain time, and were brought a pan of microwaved offal that bore a strong resemblance to the presently offered offal. I remember gathering up the soft drink and packaged brownie, then grabbed a couple of the Heberw National hotdogs and some chips. Denks Gott those hot dogs are still available today. Quite tasty.
and I STILL haven't figured out where they got the term "Flex Dining". The only thing flexible is the cheap plastic cutlery.
 
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jis

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Years ago I rode one of he CHI-NY routes. I don't think it was the Cardinal. Left CHI around 2000-2200 hours, IIRC. the salient points I remember about the trip was that the lone sleeper was the first car behind the engine (You could look out the front door and look at the headlight), noisy as Hell. And the "food" service was really bad. You were individually called to the cafe car at a certain time, and were brought a pan of microwaved offal that bore a strong resemblance to the presently offered offal. I remember gathering up the soft drink and packaged brownie, then grabbed a couple of the Heberw National hotdogs and some chips. Denks Gott those hot dogs are still available today. Quite tasty.
and I STILL haven't figured out where they got the term "Flex Dining". The only thing flexible is the cheap plastic cutlery.
You were on the Lake Shore Limited in the Boston Sleeper which is the first car of the train when there is no Boston Baggage car. This was apparently during the period when Diner had been replaced by SDS delivered from the Cafe on the LSL, due to shortage of Diners in the interim period when Heritage Diners were withdrawn slowly as they came up for major overhaul and Viewliner Diners were getting delayed in delivery. That train did have two other Sleepers at the other end in the New York Section.
 
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