At the most expensive and sophisticated restaurants, the service tends to be the same as in a diner, just more refined and thorough. But it could be quantitatively different. Elite restaurants feature exotic ingredients and preparation that require an experienced fork and palette to appreciate, expertise many of us don’t possess and for which the menu and momentary description by the server doesn’t suffice.
Enter the Food Guide. In addition to the conventional service, a food guide would join you at the table and guide you through the meal. She would describe the chef’s philosophy, where the ingredients originated, how the meal was prepared, how to eat it, what tastes to tune in, etc. At this level of restaurant, the patrons have no presumption of conducting business or chit-chat; the food is the focus and the restaurant provides a food-centric experience.