Forked: A New Standard for American Dining

ISBN : 9780199380473

Saru Jayaraman
248 Pages
140 x 210 mm
Pub date
Mar 2016
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A restaurant critic can tell you about the chef. A menu can tell you about the farm-sourced ingredients. Now who's going to tell you about the people preparing your meal? From James Beard Leadership Award winner Saru Jayaraman, Forked is an enlightening examination of what we don't talk about when we talk about restaurants: Is the line cook working through a case of stomach flu because he doesn't get paid sick days? Is the busser not being promoted because he speaks with an accent? Is the server tolerating sexual harassment because tips are her only income? As most corporate restaurants continue to set low standards for worker wages and benefits, a new class of chefs and restaurateurs is working to foster sustainability in their food and their employees. Forked offers an insider's view of the highest-and lowest-scoring restaurants for worker pay and benefits in each sector of the restaurant industry, and with it, a new way of thinking about how and where we eat.


1. Introduction: Why We Are Forked
2. Casual and Family-Style Restaurants: Tipped Over the Edge
The Olive Garden
Vimala's Curryblossom Cafe
3. Fine Dining: The Great Service Divide
The Capital Grille
4. Mexican Food: Climbing the Ladder
Taco Bell
5. Burgers, Bills, and No Benefits
In-N-Out Burger
6. A Tale of Two Sandwiches
7. The Coffee Cafe: A Place for Debate?
Manifesto Cafe
8. Diners: Change Is Possible
Florida Avenue Grill
9. Conclusion: The Road from Here

About the author: 

Saru Jayaraman is Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United (ROC United) and a graduate of Yale Law School and the Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. She has been named one of Crain's 40 Under 40, CNN's Ten Visionary Women, New York magazine's Influential of New York, and a 2014 White House Champion of Change. Her work has been profiled extensively in the New York Times, and she has appeared on CNN, MSNBC, Bill Moyers Journal, NBC Nightly News, Today, and Real Time with Bill Maher.

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