So You Want To Be A Waiter

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Daily Archives: February 21, 2010

Cutting corners

As waiters, we sometimes have to cut corners.

But last night, I was reminded that you have to be careful about cutting corners.

A table ordered  two bottles of the same wine (a fairly recent Cabernet Sauvignon from a prominent California winery). Sin ce we had at least 7 or 8 people drinking, I poured the first bottle and decanted the remainder and opened the second bottle. I was going to pour the second bottle to the remaining guests, but I had about a fifth of the first bottle in the decanter. Instead of getting a second decanter, I started to pour the second bottle into the decanter, when the guy who ordered the wine stopped me and said, “Are you mixing bottles in the same decanter? You never do that”.

Technically he was right. Most people don’t mind unless it’s a wine that can be pretty variable such as a French Burgundy. In fact, I had the same mindset when I stopped pouring the first bottle and decanted the second because I was indending to keep from mixing the last of the first bottle in the next round of glasses. I sort of defaulted to the normal “I don’t care if you mix bottles” mindset.

While he wasn’t pleased, fortunately, he didn’t hold it against me and I apologized once more as I presented the check. He still tipped 20% on the wine (which was rung up on a separate check).

So, before you cut a corner, sometimes it’s good to ask the guest first.

Just sayin’…