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Friday, April 2, 2010

What Local Restaurants Can Learn from Momofuku's Front-of-House Rules

Posted By on Fri, Apr 2, 2010 at 2:42 PM

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5. Servers need to practice pouring wine. Practice wine pouring over and around guests. DO NOT rest wine neck on rim of glass when pouring.

With a few exceptions on the higher end, wine service in St. Louis is abysmal. I don't mean the wine selection -- though, with a few exceptions, it's no great shakes -- but rather the simple mechanics of pouring a glass without dripping wine over the table, diners, etc. Knowing how to open and pour wine should be a baseline skill for any server. Practice at home, where you can drink what you pour.

6. BASIC cocktail knowledge... A margarita can be on rocks, or up, with/without salt. A martini can be dry, dirty, with olives, etc.

An addendum from experience: If the bartender doesn't know how to make a requested drink, don't immediately return to the table and ask the diner what it is. It makes me doubt the competence of everyone at the restaurant. You should have a good cocktail guide on hand for such an occasion -- and, failing that, there is always the Internet. On the other hand, if it's an obscure drink with variants, do return to ask the diner his or her specific preferences.

7. Check on dishwasher for cleanliness of glassware.

Should be self-explanatory. Sadly, it often isn't.

8. Don't invade next tables space.

You might have a lovely, shapely, begging-to-be-squeezed ass. I still don't want it in my face as you lean over the table next to mine.

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