Confessions of Larry Bates

Larry Bates loves Bobby Flay and eating late and watching movies.
Larry Bates, director of dining services for Riddle Village in Media, Pa., would be in law enforcement if he weren’t in foodservice and doesn’t understand the hype around sustainability. 

Q. What is the best part of your job?

Getting to know and talk to the residents. It sounds cliché, but they can really be great.

Q. What is the worst part of your job?

Listening to invalided complaints, or my commute.

Q. What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

My two children.

Q. What is the most unusual foodservice/catering request you have ever received?

We just had a resident celebrate a 65th wedding anniversary and they want to serve Sloppy Joes.

Q. If you weren't in foodservice what would you be doing?

Law enforcement.

Q. Which talent would you most like to have?

Learn to play guitar.

Q. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Patience, I need it.

Q. What is your greatest fear?

That my kids will not grow up not happy and successful with the potential direction this country is heading.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

Coach Andy Reid, that's if the Eagles win the super bowl this year!

Q. What is your favorite meal?

I love too much to pick, but there is nothing like a good rare steak!

Q. What is your "guilty pleasure?"

Eating late while watching a movie

Q. What will people always find in your refrigerator?

Fruit and chopped garlic.

Q. What food fad do you wish had never started?

That's hard because I love food so much. The more different the better. 

Q. What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?

Snails. I’ve had everything imaginable, but who would think of eating a slimy snail? Common, but weird.

Q. What do you consider to be the most overrated foodservice trend?

Green and sustainability. Business was always conducted local, when conditions permit, because of transportation cost. Green is an invented word that wastes money.

Q. Read the book or see the movie?

See the movie.

Q. Are you a morning or evening person?

Morning.

Q. What are your words to live by?

Live each day like you can make a difference, because you can. We will not be judged by what we do while people are watching, but what we do when no one is watching at all. 

Q. Who is your favorite celebrity chef?

Bobby Flay.

Q. What activity is at the top of your bucket list?

Sky dive. If I chicken out, to catch a fish more than 50 pounds. 

Q. What is your most treasured possession?

My family.

Q. If you could eat dinner with anyone living or dead, who would it be?

My dad.

Q. What would be your dream vacation?

Any vacation would be a dream, but warm with blue water is a start.

Q. What do you value most in a friend?

Loyalty.

Q. If you had a time machine what historical event or era would you visit?

I would like to have seen how Stonehenge was built. I would also have love to see the Roaring ‘20s to before the Depression.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Amherst-Pelham Regional School District in Amherst, Mass., is updating its lunch debt policy to no longer single out students, MassLive reports.

Under the new policy, students with lunch debt will be given the same meals as their peers, regardless of how much they owe. School officials will also be communicating directly with parents of students who have accumulated debt instead of through the students themselves.

The updated policy comes just before U.S. school districts will be required to publicly list their lunch debt policies, per new USDA requirements starting July 1...

Menu Development
eureka

Since California’s state motto is “Eureka!” it seems fitting that a recent conversation with the director of hospitality at San Diego’s Palomar Health led to the biggest aha moment I’ve had in a long time.

I called Jim Metzger in late April with the purpose of discussing Palomar’s recent commitment to the goal of making 60% of its total menu plant-based by this summer. It seemed a lofty number, and I was curious how the public health system planned to get there.

But my personal eureka didn’t come while we were talking about how Palomar had cleaned up the impulse-buy zones...

Industry News & Opinion

Labeling foods with indulgent buzzwords such as “sweet sizzlin’” and “crispy” can lead consumers to make healthier food choices , according to a recent study out of Stanford University .

In the fall 2016 study, researchers labeled vegetables in one of the school’s dining halls using terms from four categories: basic, healthy restrictive, healthy positive or indulgent.

The green beans, for example, were listed as “green beans” for basic, “light ‘n’ low-carb green beans and shallots” for healthy restrictive, “healthy energy boosting green beans and shallots” for healthy...

Ideas and Innovation
sparkling water

Our carbonated soft drink sales at Earls.67 reflect a national trend; we’re continually down on carbonated soft drink sales by 8% to 9% on an annual basis,” says Cameron Bogue, beverage director at the contemporary-casual chain Earls Kitchen + Bar.

The issue with spa water

Many operators are intrigued with the offering, but they are learning that infused water can’t be offered at a cost to guests unless there is added value beyond cut-up fruit. Bogue says, “I was adamant that I didn’t want to charge for spa water.”

Agua fresca alternatives

At the original location of

...

FSD Resources