Lookin' Good at 58

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

This Is a First For Me

This 26th anniversary couple comes in last night and she orders a large glass of Merlot and he orders a draft beer. They want some time to chat. Their drinks are empty and they by this time have ordered and got their appetizers.

He says I will have another beer and she ask me if the bottle on the left hand side of the wine list is the same as the one she had by the glass. I am thinking automatically it is but I go to the bar and check it out anyway. I don't know maybe she is wondering about the vintage or something.

I return to tell her it is the same wine as the glass she had just finished as the bottle we sell on the wine list she is asking me about.

She then ask me if she can replace the glass she has just drank with a bottle. I look at her like are you for real ?

She wanted to forget the glass she had just drank and take it off the bill so she can start with a bottle instead. Needless to say I said we couldn't do that..

Makes you wonder , doesn't it?

14 comments:

teleburst said...

I think I might have asked if she was planning to finish the bottle. If the answer was yes, I would have then offered to open a new bottle at the table and pour three glasses out of it retaining the bottle and the remaining wine to be returned to the bar. This is assuming that my restaurant poured 4 glasses per bottle. If she wasn't wanting to finish the bottle but wanted to take some home with her (assuming that it's allowed where you are), I'd offer to open a new bottle, pour her a glass and then pour a second glass to take back to the bar and then leave the bottle. I'd then marry the glass back into an open bottle. Then I'd have the manager remove the first glass from the bill.

Of course, I'd pre-clear all of this with the manager before offering to do this.

Obviously, I'd do everything to sell her more wine.

If she was just looking for a free glass of wine, I'd have to decline. But at least I tried.

"So You Want To Be A Waiter"

LW said...

People do things like this to me all the time with food and alcohol.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

Teleburst...in our restaurant I would have to charge her for the glass anyway that she drank and then charge her for the new bottle. I only can get stuff that is rung in. If she hadn't touch the glass or drank anything I would have just taken the glass back and then sold her the bottle and just got the manager to delete the bottle of wine. As it turned out anyway it was just as well for her as they had to leave after the appetizer and celebrate with their daughter and graduation.Another thing is too she was planning on drinking the bottle herself. I would rather forgo the extra revenue and have the guest somewhat coherent when they left.They were a bit strange when they sat down at the table.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

L.W. must drive you crazy!

G.H. said...

So, lets say they order a glass of something. you go in the back and open a new bottle, and pour the glass. then if they say they want the bottle, thats totally fine because all thats been poured was their initial glass. This happens a lot, and we usually just let them have the bottle. Basically because there the only ones who have drank out of it.

teleburst said...

"Teleburst...in our restaurant I would have to charge her for the glass anyway that she drank and then charge her for the new bottle".

That's a shame. Our management takes a longer view. They would rather sell another 3 glasses of wine or a bottle instead of a glass. As long as we got that last glass back, they'd have no problem voiding out the previous glass.

I'm glad that they are flexible in this way.

But I get your point about limiting the guest's alcohol consumption.

"So You Want To Be A Waiter" blog

http://teleburst.wordpress.com/

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

G.H..I am with you but it was our house wine and the bottle has since been used for other glasses of house wine so what is left is not a full bottle minus her glass.In essence if she wanted a new bottle she would just have to order one. I am sorry if I am not going to get a bottle then measure one glass out of it and delete the glass she drank and sell her a bottle. Never crossed my mind. It is ridiculous. This is a house wine for pete's sake.I see your point though and love your input. Just wouldn't do it unless she hadn't touched her glass.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

Teleburst..That is good your place is flexible like that. As I mentioned in another comment it was our house wine so the bottle was gone pretty much or consumed by others doing the glasses.We offer a 6 or 9 oz glass and she had already a 9. If she did order the bottle that would have been over 32 oz and maybe just maybe her husband may have had a glass. Even if the hubby was driving you never know how she is going to end up at the end of the meal. As to the sales looking at it the other way if she had ordered the bottle then it would have been a glass plus a bottle. I am also figuring if you want to drink a bottle why worry about the glass you already have downed so to speak. If you get what I mean. It is like nickel and diming your liver. Lol

SkippyMom said...

It just makes me wonder. What the hell do people think sometimes?

I don't know if I could do it, but I would've opened the bottle, poured one glass out, poured her a glass and left the bottle - taking the poured glass with me [hoping like heck someone else ordered it or...drank it in the kitchen b/c of the sheer stupidity of the request]

That would've been the only way to accommodate her request where I used to work.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

SkippyMom..it makes me wonder too. I don't go to such extremes to please people I guess.

¸.•*´)ღ¸.•*´Chris said...

It takes all kinds, doesn't it? Many people don't understand the ways of the food/beverage industry. That's why they make the requests they do.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

Chris..sure makes it interesting doesn't it.

teleburst said...

"Teleburst..That is good your place is flexible like that. As I mentioned in another comment it was our house wine so the bottle was gone pretty much or consumed by others doing the glasses.We offer a 6 or 9 oz glass and she had already a 9".

That would certainly have made it far more difficult. A 750ml bottle pours almost exactly 4 six oz pours. That's why I qualified it as "if you pour 4 glasses per bottle". That's what we do in our restaurant. We have no 9 oz pours. A 9 oz pour would seem to me to be counter-productive. It's makes it far easier for the guest to only nurse a single "glass and a half" for the whole meal as opposed to ordering a "second glass".And, of course, if that's the case, you've just lost half a glass in sales.

As to the already poured bottle thing, that's why I mentioned the voiding of the first glass and the pouring of 3 glasses from a new bottle. Technically, it might actually be illegal from a local alcohol board standpoint to marry wine from two bottles (I'm not sure about that), but I wouldn't really care all that much. And, as I point out below, you really don't have to marry it into another bottle. Your bartender just pours it into the next glass before he or she opens a new bottle. Yeah, it might mean an extra bottle in the well for a few minutes, but it will be gone shortly.

I've actually done something similar to this a few times, at my suggestion. I had a guest who ordered a glass of wine to start. Then, the other person decided to order a glass of the same wine (not the same thing, but you get my drift - I would have adapted this strategy to a single drinker, but I would have probably had to "return" one glass to the bar for marrying or pouring off). I then suggested that I just get a new bottle. As it turned out, I didn't have to return any wine any of these times because I also told them that they could cork what they didn't drink and take it with them, which they did. So, rather than selling certain two glasses of wine, and maybe, if I were lucky, they might order a second glass of wine, I got a sure 4 glasses. Turned out that most of the time, they ended up finishing the bottle between the two of them. I realize that this won't work unless your locale has a law that allows unfinished wine to leave the premises.

Another advantage I have for selling more wine is that we deliver the wine in cortinas (little one serving carafes). It's easy for me to sell an extra glass of wine to split between two people to finish their meal. many times, they won't get a second glass of wine, but they'll readily accept a half-glass. I probably sell another 10 bottles of wine a year doing this.

What was great was when I worked in a restaurant where we poured our own glasses of wine tableside. I could sell half-glasses like crazy, plus, I had more control over turning a single glass of wine into a bottle by making the offer that I talked about. Of course, that last glass of wine had to either be married to another glass or simply become another 3/4th empty bottle of "wine by the glass". See? You don't really even have to marry it. It just gets poured off next before opening a fresh bottle.

I try to think outside the box whenever I get an opening. Of course, the management also has to be able to think outside the box as well.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

Teleburst...yeah I know what you mean but our place wouldn't allow that and you bring up a point about marrying bottles. I would if she had ordered that bottle after finishing a glass would have to bring the full bottle to the table and open it there. As well we are doing 500-600 covers right now a night so we don't really have the luxury of going back to the bar and doing all sorts of things with a bottle or glass of wine as to marrying. The chits at the bar lined up it would be just too time consuming anyway just waiting.