Tag Archives: grey goose

Priceless.

26 Nov

I left the restaurant for a month, to work on a project.  When I came back Wednesday night, it was jarring to interact with the guests; my restaurant caters to a subculture of people so entitled, that their behavior is truly out of adjustment with the rest of world, and I had forgotten just how pathological some of these people really were.

Enter my first table of the night, two twenty-something female business suits, who drank ten “grey goose n’ sodas” between the two of them, in two hours, while discussing sales demographics, and dirty office assignations.

The blonde alcoholic seated in the banquet asked me if “there were any bones in the chicken,” as if bones would certainly render any entrée inedible. I responded, “yes, there were some bones in the thigh meat,” and “no, we couldn’t remove them from the dish.” The notion that a chicken had bones, which could not be removed, revolted the blonde to such a degree, that she opted for the chilean sea bass instead.

When the sea bass arrived at the table, I checked back with the blonde. She was indignant, and began a passive aggressive tirade.

“I’m not difficult. I’m not,” she said. “… But you remember how I asked you if the chicken had bones?”

“Yes,” I said.

“Well, I can’t eat something with skin. This has skin on it. You didn’t tell me there was skin on it. I can’t eat this. It’s disgusting.” (the very thin  and tasty skin –easily removeable– was on one side of the filet.)

“Do you want Chef to remove the skin in the kitchen?,” I offered.

“No, now that I know it has skin. I can’t think about it. Just get me whatever she’s having,” the blonde said, pointing to her friend’s plate, and waving me away with her wrist.

I personally brought the blonde her new couscous entrée, but she had to get a little dig in first, before I was excused.

“Are you new here?,” she said.

“No,” I said.

“Well, I guess you’re a little slow on the learning curve then.” (her implication being that someone who doesn’t like bones in chicken, obviously can’t tolerate skin on a fish). 

“Yes,” I happily agreed. “I guess I’m a little slow on the learning curve.”

“Going forward. If there’s skin on a fish, you really should mention it.”

“Thank You,” I said, with the most saccharin smile I could muster. “I don’t know what I was thinking. I will make sure to mention it… Going forward.”

I kept my cool, but couldn’t resist when the perfect opportunity to one-up her presented itself: the blonde at the banquet paid with a novelty “alum” credit-card, sponsored by my alma mater. We were both graduates of the same over-priced university. Cute! And she was treating me like shit. Cuter! 

The second she handed me the card, I noticed our alma mater’s iconic university building, clearly featured on the card-front, and I uttered the building’s name under my breath, as if it was a passing thought.  The blonde was drunk, but she picked up on my cue immediately. Oh, the look on her face. I didn’t even give her the satisfaction of apologizing. I just dropped the check and said, “Have a wonderful evening, ladies.”

Chilean sea bass, at a swanky NYC restaurant: $32 dollars.

Ten Grey goose and sodas, with two-limes: $160 dollars.

Letting a privileged bitch know that she’s a bitch, without calling her a “bitch,” and losing your job: Priceless.

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44 Patron shots in 10 minutes

24 Oct

Last night I had a twenty-two top that waited over an hour for a table.  It was a bunch of trust fund kids (by kids, I mean early thirty-somethings who have fake jobs, and are drinking with the same people who they invited to their Bar Mitzvah.)

Needless to say, by the time I got them they were already drunk from waiting at the bar, and very, very irritable.  My manager sent them a round of shots at the get-go. And then another manager sent them another round of shots, with the rationalization, “These people run in some crazy circles.” That’s 44 shots delivered in a matter of ten minutes -not fun to carry on one tray, and run around a crowded banquet table-.

For the record, I’m a high-volume rockstar, if I do say so myself. They could not have been in better hands. I can handle that many people. I just can’t handle that many people who aren’t aware that they ARE that many people, and that it does take some time to get an order in, when a party is that large.

Of course once I got to the table I was held there for twenty minutes taking a food and drink order, despite the fact I had other tables. It was IMPOSSIBLE to leave. And of course, it took another ten minutes to make the twenty-two specialty cocktails ordered. And it takes another ten minutes to deliver their drinks. So— yes, some people had to wait twenty minutes for their drinks.

This one guy kept saying, “I’m waiting on the Goose Rocks that never came.” By this time I was pretty pissed and just said, “Oh yeah, well, it takes a few minutes to make twenty-two-drinks.” He responded with, “Well, since it’s taking so long, put in three more Grey Goose rocks in, now.”

Did I mention that five “joiners” came to the table, making it 27 people? And there was nowhere to put them. Nowhere. And we were so busy that nobody could help me. I delivered all the drinks, cleared the table, put down their miss en place for the entrees, cleared and entrees and put down the set-up for desert. (My busser was probably eating a filet somewhere in a side-station.)

Basically the night consisted of me cocktailing my ass off till there tab was at about $2,700. They started a small food fight when they couldn’t agree who would pay the bill. First they handed me 12 credit cards. When I explained I couldn’t split the bill that many ways, they played Credit Card Russian Roulette, and settled on 8 cards.

By the time I was done running around for this table, and bussing it, I had sweat through my shirt and was fairly delirious. I was so out of it in fact, that the table adjacent to the douche-bags offered to let me sit down with them. I did sit with them, and conversed, while I waited for the douches to play Roulette.

It took me about seven minutes to apply the cash, and split the bill 8 ways. One of the douches came back to the server station and demanded to know what was taking so long. I just looked at him and said, “I’m on check number 8 right now, Sir.” He responded with, “Oh, man, thanks, right… I mean, it’s not your fault. You’re great man… I mean, you’re really cool.” I had to wonder why he was yelling at me then if I was “really cool.”

They were a classy group.

It’s not the MOB; it’s Grey Goose.

10 Oct

Last night I had a conversation with the head bartender from a Tribeca hotspot. I learned some very interesting information about liquor sales and distribution in Manhattan.

First, he confirmed what I’d always suspected: “Hot” restaurants get huge discounts from liquor companies for featuring their products in house made cocktails. Liquor sales reps don’t offer discounts to just any bar or restaurant. They only court high-volume establishments that will help promote their brand name, to an “in” crowd.  Apparently the only vodka that doesn’t have to do this kind of restaurant  recruiting is Grey Goose; it sells itself. No surprise there, but what do these discounts mean on paper?  

It plays out like this: A Svedka representative says to the restauranteur, “Svedka will give you ten percent off our product, if you make a signature Svedka cocktail, and run it on your menu for three months.” Then management tells the bartenders, “We need a Svedka cocktail.” However, if Chopin all of a sudden says, “No, no, we’ll give you twenty-percent off,” the Svedka cocktail quickly is changed to a Chopin cocktail. This explains why the vodkas are always changing on new featured cocktails at my restaurant.

“Just how inflated are drink prices then, if restaurants are receiving these discounts?,” I asked.

“Well,” said the bartender. “A two oz. pour of a premium vodka might cost the restaurant less than $1.25, and we charge $14 dollars for the drink. Does that answer your question?”

Yes. It did.

Additionally I learned why some popular liquors are “86’d” for months at a time at my restaurant.

For example we were “86 Patron” for months. Do you know what it’s like telling people you don’t have Patron? Management kept saying, “Oh, we’re working things out; we’ll get a shipment.”

I never understood what was really going on: the restaurant was playing hard-ball with Patron, punishing them for not giving the restaurant a discount, essentially saying, “We can run fine without you. You think you’re so hot you don’t need to give us a discount? Well, watch us not sell your product for a couple of months.” Of course, in the end, a deal was struck, and management finally said, “We got our shipment of Patron.” Yeah right, what you got was a discount, finally.

I hope this information is helpful the next time you order a $22 dollar Stoli Elite cosmo.8

“I don’t have my ID, but I do have my cellphone.”

30 Sep

“I don’t have my ID, but I do have my cellphone.”

Seat 3, Table 1, on forgetting her ID at home, in the Netherlands. 

For those of you who didn’t read my post  “The Ball’s Over Cinderalla: ID Please,” the New York District Attorney continues to crack-down on underage drinking in the city. And for the first time since they grew breasts, models from the Netherlands who are unable to produce a valid U.S. issued ID, are being told “No;” or, as my co-worker monologued in the service station:

“NOOOO! Your cellphone? Gimme an I.D. from the United Fucking States of America, ya’ fuckin’ six-foot-two, Bambi-eyed-ALIEN!”

When the future of a business might hinge on one illegal Kir (Who am I kidding, the kiddies don’t order Kirs), carding everyone seems like an obvious choice. However, an interesting dilemma has developed in New York establishments, where the girls have always been more notorious than the food:

If you don’t card the models you might get shut down; but, if you card the models, they won’t come back. And if the models don’t come, neither will the older men who follow the fawns to the breeding-grounds, and pay for their endless shots of Patron (Bambi’s no cheap date).

Fortunately, my restaurant is erring on the side of good lawful judgement. I card anyone who looks under 35 ( I once saw an undercover cop hand-cuff a server who had just served a minor -unknowingly-. The server was taken straight to jail, and faced over 5,000 dollars in fines, not including legal fees. Needless to say, he also lost his job). I don’t take risks.

But as you might imagine, giving servers the freedom to say “NO” against a privileged class of jetsetters, is a recipe for fine drama. Did someone say DRAMA? Entre moi, TheInsideWaiter.

Just tonight, an older male guest threatened to “have my job,” if I didn’t serve his date, who was prancing around New York without an ID ((Really a dumb move to begin with, considering you can get arrested in New York City for failing to have proper identification on your person at all times (Thanks, Department of  Homeland Security)).

I explained to him that I would certainly lose my job if I did serve the guest’s date.  At that very moment the girl admitted to being underage. Can someone say  — Awwwwwkward? Last time I checked you gotta have sex with kids over 18?

Carding has truly become the most stressful element of my job. You simply don’t know how people will respond, particularly the women.  One lady, Seat 1-Table 21, said, “You just made my day; seriously, I love you right now;” but, the very young girl that replaced her at the same table, winced at me with, “Why? You’re carding me? Why?” She was twenty-one. Twenty-one, and she was complaining I was carding her. You can only imagine how the women who are thirty-one respond. It’s like I asked them how many people they’ve slept with, or why they’re  Republicans. Why are they Republicans?

At the end of the night,  I decided card two twenty-three year old girls, who were out with two fifty-perhaps-sixty-something-year-old guys. I couldn’t figure out the fouresome’s relationship.  Were they co-workers? Was this a fathers and daughters dinner? Cute.

Fortunately one of the older gentleman blew his cover when I asked for the girls to produce IDs.:

“Just don’t card my other daughter, when I bring her out. She’s the underage one,” he said, winking at his significantly younger significant other, across the table.

Honestly, I’m gonna be glad when this whole “following-the-law” thing is over, and we go back to the good ‘ole days, when the girls could just drink, and they guys could get their rocks off because they paid for the girls to drink, and the third parties involved (i.e. the waiters) never got yelled at. Yeah, those were the good ‘ole days.*

*Legal disclaimer: I’m joking.