2/24/2012 02:21:00 PM
What's Up With: Fake Votive Candles at Restaurants?
A common experience in restaurants these days: "Oh, the decor here is so snazzy, and the atmosphere is lovely, with all those flickering candles on the stairs, and the walls, and - wait a minute - ARE THOSE THINGS FAKE?!?"
We can see a restaurant's reasoning for using the little electric votives that we've noticed at more and more eateries:
1. They are cheaper, as they don't constantly need to be replaced.
2. There is no danger of a tipsy guest accidentally dropping their napkin into one and causing an evacuation of the restaurant.
3. They are less labor intensive, as the staff only needs to click the "on" button at the start of the shift and these things will glow for the entire service.
Even with all the pros, we don't think anyone who's excited about having a "candlelit dinner" is talking about dining next to a plastic cylinder with a glorified Christmas light sticking out of it. Even though the effect may be similar (especially if the restaurant invests in the models that actually flicker like a real candle), there is something off putting when you realize you're surrounded by fake candles.
What's next - the staff trotting out a birthday cake, singing, and having a patron make a wish as she flicks an off switch? Um - no.
What do you think about fake votives - is it possible to be classy and artificial at the same time? Let us know in the comments.