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June 22, 2006



Phew. That was an emotional read.
I hope it gets sorted out to YOUR satisfaction.



Although i am not in the food buisness, i also deal with a lot of different vendors and people. And i am more likely to stay with one that is happy and if there is a problem talk to me.

Customer service is essential. If you are having a problem and can not produce or sell to me, let me know no matter the reason, if your just gowing away for a while, let me know and when you come back i will welcome you.

Communication, nuff said'

Good luck and thanks for trying to help the community while balancing quality!!


We're just trying to get more farmers working with chefs in my area, so kudos to you for making such an effort (we need more chefs like you here).

In trying to facilitate this sort of network, I come across alot of the shyness, lack of social skill, or laments about "egotistical chefs" from the growers. Some of which are very valid.

But on the other hand, I've had to deal with some very pompous and inconsiderate farmers who single handedly consider themselves saviors of taste. You're very right in that it is a fluid relationship and that patience, flexibility, and communication goes both ways.

Sorry for such a crappy experience, especially from someone with whom you had such a longstanding relationship. Do keep me posted. Maybe my folks can learn something from it.

James Van Dyk

I'm having the same problem with my mushroom suppliers from the northwest this year. Flat out lies, poor quality at top prices and shipping without ice packs in 90 + tempetures.

debra van Culiblog

Thanks for the candid entry about something it hadn't even occured to me could happen - that a farmer could suck. This really underlines the necessity for a greater variety of farmers. Good luck in sorting out your relationship with this farmer - truly. Maybe you should just speak to him as candidly as you did in this entry. Fingers crossed.


Don't think of it as passive agressive, but as "California Ice".

If you've been on the receiving end of it you know how effective it can be!


I know this isn't what you want to hear, but this is your fault, but in a good way. You conditioned this guy to treat you this way. Pavlov, classical conditioning, get it? You bent over backwards, doing everything for the guy; hell, you saved him your used boxes. His comments on the invoice were inevitable. You need to stand up for yourself and demand respect because he (and most others) aren't just going to give it you for the simple reason that you deserve it.

shuna fish lydon

O Haddock, this is a fantastic post! On some level I agree with Billy. It's what I was thinking whilst reading. I think that unless our purveyors actually hear from us, there is no way for them to know how we feel.

Not only are these relationships fluid, but they are constantly negotiated! Every day that the order comes in. I never, not once, seen a purveyor act honestly all of the time. That's what scales and signatures are for.

I would let him know that the relationship is over and why. Be the better man here. (Attraction not promotion.)

And right now there is absolutely NO excuse for bad stone fruit!!


Thanks for all the comments. "California Ice", I like that.

Billy: What you're saying is certainly true, his actions are no surprise. And while I'd like to think I treat people the way I do because of who I am, not because I expect the same treatment in return, it's clear I do expect people to behave decently. And mostly the people I deal with do. I think if they didn't, I wouldn't be dealing with them in the first place, be they supplier or employee.

Debra and Shuna: You're right about being candid. I just want to make sure I've got my ducks in a row first.

Vanessa: If you'd like any assistance, don't hesitate to ask.


Definitely say something. It probably won't help, but it can't hurt - it sounds like this relationship is ending anyway. Maybe understanding why will help him avoid the same mistakes in the future.

And thanks for your commitment to buying from farmers.


Why are there so many bad Mexican restaurants in Palo Alto? The worst one is Compadres...they suck!!!! The food sucks, the service sucks, and I would never give them my business. Crappy, cheap ingredients, crappy service by an indifferent waitstaff and high prices. I think the chef is a narcotraficante.

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