To not tell my colleague the meal she's been eating is against her religion

(53 Posts)
CrystalBeth Wed 23-Apr-14 11:04:24

I regularly attend conferences with my colleague (who I don't know particularly well), there is usually a couple of us who go and we always visit a particular restaurant afterwards. Said colleague often moans (don't blame her) that there is limited things she can eat on the menu because the meat isn't halal and she can't eat anything that anything that's cooked in alcohol, therefore she always orders a particular fish dish from the menu (there are other options).

So, we went for the meal yesterday and I fancied having the fish dish myself (it was very naice) and notably said in the description that it was cooked in gin. I have this morning realised that my colleague has been eating a dish cooked in alcohol that's against her religion confused surely she has noticed in the 5+ times she's eaten it as it's clearly stated on the menu?

I should tell her, I know I should, but I don't want to really upset her or make her feel like she's done wrong in her religion and given it's just me and her and a four hour train ride this afternoon I don't know if I can face it. AIBU?

sashh Thu 24-Apr-14 14:54:54

I don't know about gin, but salmon in vermouth with grapes is awesome.

Hissy Wed 23-Apr-14 17:20:27

Leave her to make her own food choices, she's perfectly capable of making her own choices.

TheRealAmandaClarke Wed 23-Apr-14 15:58:44

Where is the restaurant?
I feel a need to eat this dish.

Brittapieandchips Wed 23-Apr-14 15:50:38

I've found people with dietary requirements to be more knowledgable than the general population, iyswim. My vegan friend often has to explain to me why she can't have x or y.

CrystalBeth Wed 23-Apr-14 15:49:24

I would be incredibly surprised if she doesn't know what gin is, given that last time we went out about half the table ordered gin and tonics.

CrystalBeth Wed 23-Apr-14 15:46:52

This particular restaurant is the only one that's actually at the conference venue, if we were to go to an alternative we'd all have to drive somewhere else and this is by far the most convenient as it's in the same hotel.

There are lots of other veggie options on the menu but I think she's quite a fussy eater. The fish (in gin) is very nice.

I wouldn't say anything. Her diet is her choice, it's due to belief not allergy or intolerance (it's a choice to be religious after all), and if she's going to be upset at mistakes she needs to do a bit more research doesn't she. Gin is a common alcoholic drink, available at all supermarkets, advertised on TV, so there's no excuse not to have heard of it.

peggyundercrackers Wed 23-Apr-14 15:37:10

i cant believe the amount of people who think its their business to point something obvious out to someone else when its absolutely nothing to do with them. and some people wonder why they get the rude answers from people. MYOB!

Quinteszilla Wed 23-Apr-14 15:25:49

You sure it was gin, and not gin^ger^?

TheScience Wed 23-Apr-14 15:19:46

Next time she orders it I think I would have to say "gin is alcohol, isn't it?" or something similar.

EhricLovesTheBhrothers Wed 23-Apr-14 15:17:40

Yes! tell her. She may be upset about having eaten it before but it's her own fault. Why wouldn't you want to bring it to her attention now? Just to spare upset? But she may realise anyway and still be upset. This way you have saved her even more eating of something she doesn't want to eat.
I'm veggie and if I had been eating something that wasn't veggie without realising, but someone I knew had realised, I'd be most upset by them not telling me tbh.
My XH is Muslim and ate pork once by accident. He got over it because he didn't do it intentionally.

ThatBloodyWoman Wed 23-Apr-14 15:12:38

Is English her first language?

ThatBloodyWoman Wed 23-Apr-14 15:11:18

If she is going to revisit the restaurant, I would tell her.

AdoraBell Wed 23-Apr-14 15:08:55

She can read the menu, either she has read it and chooses to order the fish or she hasn't bothered to read it as closely as some might think she should.

Either way I wouldn't tell her, you haven't forced her to eat that dish and her diet isn't your responsibility. If it were an allergy obviously you should tell her.

Some people do eat things that go against their religion when they can get away with it. I remember a rellie's GF stopping the bacon sarnies she gave her DCs while the divorce went through because her ex took their Jewish heratige much more seriously than she did. Once everything was settled bacon was back on the menu.

Falconi Wed 23-Apr-14 14:53:13

Up to her to find out what gin is, specially if she needs to be careful about what she eats.

AndIdratherplayhereWithalltheM Wed 23-Apr-14 14:45:43

she can read, leave her be!

AndIdratherplayhereWithalltheM Wed 23-Apr-14 14:39:44

Just leave her!

Maybe she has ignored it and just wants to eat it, you bringing it up will make her feel awkward and stop her from eating it!

I had similar at a wedding, I was quite prepared at 5 months pregs to eat the shell fish, I trusted the establishment, top notch wedding, and as I made a reach for the shared shell fish starter....two other guests turned into their business to tell me I should not be eating shell fish, I said i was very happy too, and they went on and on and on.

In the end I was embarrased out of eating it and just sat there with diddly squat.

keep your nose out.

NoodleOodle Wed 23-Apr-14 14:21:36

I would let her know if she goes to order it again.

TheRealAmandaClarke Wed 23-Apr-14 14:17:47

One of the most fabulous meals I ate was monkfish cooked in gin and lime.
Oh glory be. It was a thing of wonder.

And it's true that much of the alcohol remains after cooking. The amount "burned off" varies depending on the cooking method/ time. But there'll still be some present in most dishes.

nicename Wed 23-Apr-14 13:54:55

I never moan about choice of restaurants (might do if its a steak house) and manage fine. I certainly wouldn't 'shoot the messanger' if I found out there was a meat product in a meal. I may be a bit miffed if someone watched me eat it a few times before telling me!

To be honest, if she lives in the country and presmably eats out,then her choice of dietary restrictions should mean that she does her homework. If she was that worried, she would stick to veggie food. How could she not have heard of gin, they advertise it all over and its not exactly an obscure drink?

From my years in corporate entertaining, there aren't all that many who dobt 'bend' dietary requirements when eating at a function!

You wouldn't believe the fuss some people make before an event, then you see them face down in the prawn vol a vonts (and they know exactly what it is). I am thinking in particular about one client who insisted on a kosher meal/wine being provided at a dinner, then went on to eat/drink everythig else too.

WooWooOwl Wed 23-Apr-14 13:41:43

I wouldn't say anything. Her food choices are up to her to eraser he and abide by. I think it's actually quite rude of her to moan about the menu at the groups chosen restaurant. Presumably she isn't forced to go, and it's not as if this choice is a medical requirement.

It is incredibly difficult to give everyone exactly what they want when eating out as a group, and if you change plans for one person then you have to do it for everyone, which gets complicated, especially if you're in an area with limited choice of restaurants.

Gruntfuttock Wed 23-Apr-14 13:31:15

It's all very well, but telling her that there's been a change in the menu and the fish dish now contains gin, probably won't work, because she must've seen the word 'gin' in the description and not known that it was alcohol and she'll surely remember that it always said that, just that no one told her what it was before.

nicename Wed 23-Apr-14 13:06:02

Fish in gin! Well I never!

I would mention it to her. She may be cross that you haven't mentioned it before though. Its not technically a 'sin' if you genuinely didn't know and/or it wasn't avoidable (god doesn't condem a starving person from eating non halal if it meant life or death).

As a veggie, I can only assume that I have eaten/drunk things with dead animals in it over the years without my knowledge.

5Foot5 Wed 23-Apr-14 13:03:53

I agree with eightandthreequarters, can you not find a different restaurant? Presumably if she has this dish every time it is because it is the only thing she thinks she can eat. So if you keep going there you can't suggest an alternative for her and if she does find out then what is she going to do?

rinabean Wed 23-Apr-14 13:01:53

Tell her subtly like Emmanuel said.

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