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The secrets restaurant servers won't tell you

Thursday - 9/13/2012, 6:45am  ET

WASHINGTON - Do you like powdered eggs and nearly expired food?

Probably not, and if so, there are some secrets restaurant servers don't want you to know - and you probably don't want to know either.

Reader's Digest compiled a list of more than 50 of these dining-out secrets.

Here are a few examples that aren't on the menu:

  • In the mood for late-night coffee, or need to pull an all-nighter for school? Charity Ohlund tells Reader's Digest most coffee after 8 p.m. is decaf, because employees don't want to clean two pots.

  • Another waitress at a popular pizza chain admits to adding sugar to kids' meals so they'll like them more -- and sugar is even added to pizza dough.

  • Vegetarian? Servers may say soup is made with vegetable stock, even if it's not. They know you can't tell the difference.

  • Seeking a recommendation from your waiter on "what's good" may not get you anywhere. Most waiters aren't allowed to say they don't like a menu item.

  • Tapping and snapping is a no-no. Whistling at your server will only make your wait longer.

  • In some restaurants, severs will simply run a spoon under hot water if a guest complains about cold soup.

  • Not very many restaurants outside of Starbucks actually have skim milk - but if you order it, they won't say a word.

Bottom line. If you treat waiters with respect and use their names, you may get better service.

Read more serving secrets from Reader's Digest.

WTOP's David Burd contributed to this report. Follow David and WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)