If I ran a restaurant
No member of staff would stand outside accosting passers-by with our menu.
Nobody would ever wait to be seated. Of course, customers would be walked to their seats, just don’t make them wait; esspecially when there are empty seats available.
All tables would be created equal. No ‘better’ seats.
No tables would wobble, ever.
Offer to take jackets/bags to the free cloakroom.
Nobody would have a view into the toilets when the toilet door is open.
Nobody would be able to hear hand dryers from the toilet.
In fact, they are never called toilets, they are called restrooms.
Push to exit restroom doors. Too many people don’t know what soap and water is. The last thing you want are customers thinking your food made them sick.
One server takes responsibility for your table. They ensure that your drinks are replenished and your food is exactly how you ordered it. They can enlist the help of other staff, but they manage that table for the duration of your stay.
Music would be loud enough to drown out conversations from other tables, but quiet enough to allow a few friends talk without shouting.
Clearly typeset menus.
All menus would fold, allowing customers to indicate that they are ready to order.
Staff would be very familiar with every menu item and their ingredients and prep.
All drinks staff would be trained baristas.
Thoughtful vegetarian options.
All food would be served and cleared together, unless where the custom of certain dishes differs.
Soup is served between warm and hot.
Serve promptly, calmly and politely.
Servers would never hover over a table trying to figure out what plate to place infront of which person. They just know.
Customers would always be allowed to tweak meals. If you employ chefs that care about their craft, they will jump at the opportunity to do something different.
Hire chefs, not cooks; but not too many, naturally.
Staff would be very aware of eye contact and facial expressions.
If a logistical mistake was made, something must be offered as a gesture.
Customers would never feel obliged or pressured to tip, either by the server or point-of-sale device. (Not as applicable in the US, I guess)
A single page website with contact details, menus and reviews. No music. No flash animations.
Chocolate mints are a must.