food and beverage underground

Becoming a Better Waiter with Wine

Become a better waiter, wine, wine glass

Oregon food and beverage scene has as much diversity as the state. The diversity stretches from the beautiful Oregon coast to the states high deserts. The state is full of beautiful and surprising areas. From the capital of Salem, to Portland, the largest city, the food and beverage community is thriving.

The process of becoming a better waiter when dealing with wine is to realize that 95% of all diners put their trust in the server or wine steward to choose the wine for their meal. Knowing the proper steps will make you a better waiter. The server should be able to accommodate all levels of wine drinkers. The more you can communicate to your customers, the more you can increase your waiter compensation tips. As a food service professional, the number one reason to sell wine is higher tips.

A customer who enjoys their dining experience as well as the food and wine you suggest, will possibly return and ask for you to be their server. The customer?s trust in your knowledge can be turned into repeat business for you.

We will continue writing articles to increase your knowledge on wine, but you must begin by understanding the following recommendations, which will aid you in becoming a better waiter. The first task should be to familiarize yourself with the restaurant's wine list and menu items. Knowing how to pair wine with the menu should be your next tasks as a successful waiter or bartender. Part of your restaurant manager goals should be to have everyone in the building understand the basics of your wine program. Ask your Wine Distributor to join in pre shift meetings by tasting/discussing any wine additions. They are more than happy to share information on their products to the staff.

You will be able to recommend wine to your customers after you feel comfortable with the wine list. Ask for the wine order by suggesting specific wines, as in “May I suggest a champagne or sparkling wine to start?” or “May I recommend a bottle of … to share or a glass of …?. Remember, 95% want you to tell them what they should have with their meals. They could easily stay home and pick their own wine and fix their own food, but they chose to get out for their meal. Most guests are intimidated by wine and will not order for the fear of embarrassment. As their server/host to their meal, it is your duty to help your customer feel comfortable. Try not to correct their pronunciations, or their tasting techniques.

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