Sunday, January 2, 2011
What a Way to Kick off the New Year
The waiters are all complaining of a slow start but I mentioned to one just wait till another hour passes. I was right.
It is 6 now and the bar is 3 deep , there is a 2 hour wait and where we pick up our salads there is people milling about waiting to be seated. The service bar area where the waiters pick up their drinks is surrounded by waiting people. It reminds me of a line up waiting for the box office to open to buy tickets to a rock star.
I have flipped my section over a couple of times now and the tips are generous. Everyone is in a good mood. One table left me $60. Another table said I served them a year ago on New Year's Eve. What are the odds of that occuring? A couple of tables had some kids but they were all fine.
It is 7:00 now and I am getting a third seating. The line up is huge. This is going to be a great night.
I just finish clearing a table and taking an order from another when there is a power failure. Here we are at the height of business when all of a sudden the lights go out with the exception of some emergency lighting in the restaurant. A co-worker says we better print out all our table's bills before the POS terminals all go down. I do and shortly thereafter they go down.
There is no hot water and all cooking ceases except for the final few orders that were able to reach the kitchen in time. Two hours pass and the people leave. Waiters had to struggle with handwritten bills and adding tax in etc.. People are upset but hey things happen. That is life.
I was cut and there were four waiters left available for when things got back to normal. Not sure if they did or not cause I left around 10 o'clock.
What kind of night I was having. Well when the power went out I tallied up $221 in tips after tipping out $39. I was up to 30 people at that point and with the business I probably could have added a $100 more at least.
It was a great night despite the power outage. I was smokin'.
I felt bad for the restaurant though. What a time for the power to go. Lost revenue.
It should be an exciting year to be sure if this is any indication.
Radio talk show host of "The Hospitality Industry News Network" and author of "You Only Live Once" about his early years traveling around and working on ships and foreign countries Steven blogs about his thoughts on the restaurant industry as he sees it today.
Check out his web site at www.stevennicolle.com for more information.