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paulthenurse

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So I was dropping off a few beers for a competition at a guys house about 1/2 hour away from my house yesterday and I passed a fairly well known local brew pub/restraunt. I decide to stop in for lunch after I've delivered the beer. I walk in and there is only one other person in there, it's 11:00 am and the lunch crowd hadn't started yet.

I ask the bartender what's on tap and he says' Here's a list," hands me a menu and walks away.

OK, I can understand that, he probably gets asked that 500 times a day. OTOH, he's a bartender in a brew pub and it's not exactly busy.

So after 5 minutes (!) when he comes back I ask him "How's the Pale Ale?"

He say's, "Not bad."

I think to myself "Thanks a lot, I was expecting you to tell me it sucked." So he pours me a PA and again disappears. After 5 minutes he comes back and takes my oder for a burger and without asking pours me another PA. I tell him I didn't want another PA, I had notice that they had a Kolsch chalked on the blackboard that I hadn't noticed earlier and I wanted that.

So he kind of mumbles under his breath and pours me a Kolsch in a pint glass and walks away again. After a while he comes back with my burger and asks how the Kolsch is. I tell him it's fine but ask him why they serve a Kilsch in a pint glass? He asks "What do you mean?"

I explain that Kolsch should be served in a small glass holding about 6 ounces, called a Stang. They had the glasses there, I saw them. And dip**** says that it's too much of a pain in the ass to serve a bunch of small glasses of beer.

By this point I was pretty disgusted with this buttwad so I asked him why he worked in a brewpub since he obviously didn't give a **** about what he was serving. And he say's "Hey, I just pour it."

I finished my burger and for only the second time in my life I left without leaving a tip. I considered talking to the manager on my way out but just didn't want to waste anymore of my time. I'd heard that the restraunt was living on it's past reputation, and that this one in Framingham was no where near as good as the original one in Harvard Square.

Man, that sort of thing really pisses me off. If all you want to do is slop BMC into glasses don't get a job pouring craft beer in a brewpub. I can't stand people who take no pride in their work. How much would I love to be 25 years old and working in a brewpub? And this waste of protoplasm doesn't give a crap.

OK. End of rant. I'm better now after a good nights sleep and spewing the venom out here. Thank you.

PTN
 

Soulive

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I've yet to meet a brewpub bartender (in NJ) that cares about the beer. Being anti-social is another issue though. If you're depending on tips you should be friendly and accomodating, period...
 

ohiobrewtus

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paulthenurse said:
... And this waste of protoplasm doesn't give a crap...
:D Waste of protoplasm. lol

Of the brewpubs that I've been to in the Columbus, OH area it seems to be comon practice to serve all beers in the same glass.
 

missing link

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It seems most brew pubs employ people with no interest in beer to serve the beer. All the true "beer people" are employed behind the scenes to make the beer.
 

MikeFlynn74

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That pretty typical of brewpubs-

I didnt know Kolsch were served in Thimbals ?I get mine from a local place in 25oz mugs
 

HBDrinker008

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I considered talking to the manager on my way out but just didn't want to waste anymore of my time
Personally I am usually against talking to management about poor employees. The guy may have been terrible, but I don't like to take it personally and I don't think that it is worth possibly getting the guy fired over something so trivial. I usually just decide not to come back. Thats not a shot at you, I am just saying
 

Greggy

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Thats a shame.. I too am big on pride when doing your work. It's a shame that he is giving the pub a bad name.

Greg
 

Beerthoven

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I really think its too much to expect a low paid service employee like a bartender to actually care about the beer he is pouring. In an ideal world, yes, he would take an interest. But the fact is most bartenders are simply working a job and their real interests are elsewhere.

I think the real fault is on the management and the brewers. They need to do a better job of training the servers so they can talk knowledgeably about the product, even if they don't have a personal interest in it. They are also the ones who should set and enforce standards about which glasses are used to serve which brews.

Still, he does sound like an antisocial jerk and I wouldn't have left a tip either.
 

homebrewer_99

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Beerthoven said:
I really think its too much to expect a low paid service employee like a bartender to actually care about the beer he is pouring. In an ideal world, yes, he would take an interest. But the fact is most bartenders are simply working a job and their real interests are elsewhere.

I think the real fault is on the management and the brewers. They need to do a better job of training the servers so they can talk knowledgeably about the product, even if they don't have a personal interest in it. They are also the ones who should set and enforce standards about which glasses are used to serve which brews.

Still, he does sound like an antisocial jerk and I wouldn't have left a tip either.
I agree. If the workers don't know that's one thing...if management doesn't that's another, but it's also reflected in the service and morale of the employees.

One of my peeves is bartenders who put fruit in my beer! :mad:
 

shafferpilot

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As a former manager I can tell you that a lot of $hit happens that managers don't have a clue about. Perhaps calling out the manager to rat on the bartender in the middle of the bar isn't a good idea. But a phone call during the day (when a bar manager has time to talk) to recount your experience might be appreciated. It's hard to effect good change when you don't know where change is needed.
 

SeaMonster

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Beerthoven said:
I really think its too much to expect a low paid service employee like a bartender to actually care about the beer he is pouring. In an ideal world, yes, he would take an interest. But the fact is most bartenders are simply working a job and their real interests are elsewhere.

I think the real fault is on the management and the brewers. They need to do a better job of training the servers so they can talk knowledgeably about the product, even if they don't have a personal interest in it. They are also the ones who should set and enforce standards about which glasses are used to serve which brews.

Still, he does sound like an antisocial jerk and I wouldn't have left a tip either.
I am the manager at a restaurant and I'll you what, I love it when people tell me their service sucks for whatever reason. As long as they aren't hostile about it, it let's me know that we have to take the time to retrain somebody to make sure that we aren't losing guests.

Paul, do you think you're ever going to go back during lunch to be served by that jerk again? They're losing guests and losing money and pissing themselves off by not getting a tip. And if your bartender was rude, that's nearly inexcusable. They should at least be friendly and hospitable barring any knowledge of the drinks they are pouring (which is almost just as inexcusable).

Good for you for leaving no tip. Punk kid probably deserved it.
 

andypantz13

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Beerthoven said:
I really think its too much to expect a low paid service employee like a bartender to actually care about the beer he is pouring. In an ideal world, yes, he would take an interest. But the fact is most bartenders are simply working a job and their real interests are elsewhere.

I think the real fault is on the management and the brewers. They need to do a better job of training the servers so they can talk knowledgeably about the product, even if they don't have a personal interest in it. They are also the ones who should set and enforce standards about which glasses are used to serve which brews.

Still, he does sound like an antisocial jerk and I wouldn't have left a tip either.

I guess its me, but I expect someone to take a little interest in the work they are doing, even if they don't like it. I used to wok in a B&N Cafe, and even on days were I was in a bad mood and didn't want to be there I still did my best to be friendly and helpful to a customer, and I didn't even get tips. I probably cursed several people out under my breath after they had walked away, but I always made an attempt to be pleasant on the surface. Just fake it.

I dunno, the more I think about this, the more I realize I might me in the minority of people with respect to this.
 

Beerthoven

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SeaMonster said:
... They should at least be friendly and hospitable barring any knowledge of the drinks they are pouring (which is almost just as inexcusable) ...
andypantz13 said:
... I used to wok in a B&N Cafe, and even on days were I was in a bad mood and didn't want to be there I still did my best to be friendly and helpful to a customer ...
I think that is really it right there, the bar tender in question should at least have been friendly and hospitable, even if he doesn't care much about beer.

I make a distinction between doing your job because it is your job, and doing your job because you have a real passion for what you are doing. I don't expect bartenders, waiters, or baristas to have a passion for what they are doing or a deep knowledge of the underlying product. I worked in food service far too long to expect that! What I do expect is that they will do their job well and give timely, friendly service.

Because I am a beer nut EAC, when I walk into a brewpub I expect that I will have more interest in and knowledge of beer than the bartender. If I'm wrong, and I have been in somplaces, then I am pleasantly surprised. But usually I am right, and that's just the way it is.
 

TheJadedDog

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Hey Paul, this wouldn't be that national brew pub chain off of 93 would it? If so, it sounds like you had the typical experience there. I never even bother to ask them if there beer is any good anymore; I just look at the chalk board and order what I think might appeal to me.
 

BrewDey

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I think that we tend to expect a little more from brewpub staff because we practice the craft-our perspective is a little skewed. When I 1st started brewing, I was asking the bartender at a local Rock Bottom about the brewing equipment, what was what, etc...he was clueless and he admitted it. He was nice enough though...and at that place, they serve their trippel in a proper glass-even though it was a seasonal brew.

That would have been an annoying visit. You'd assume that the purveyors have at least as much passion towards the beer as the customers who seek it out. On the flip side, there are few things more attractive than a barmaid who can give you a detailed synopsis of the beer list before you make your choice-definitely tip-worthy.
 

rdwj

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A Gorden Biersch recently opened near my house. Their beers are decent and they do an EXCELLENT job educating their servers. Granded, they're just spewing pre-scripted sentences for the most part, but it's still pretty impressive. Some of the better ones will even give you an honest opinion on what they like and why. I have no idea why ANY micro would do anything less than GB does. The beer IS the point of distinction for these types of establishments and they should preach the basics.
 

Revvy

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You could call the manager during a slow time and express your concerns. Without being EAC about it you could also take the opportunity to let the manager know about the cicerone (beer sommelier Program) that's been started recently www.Cicerone.org. It may be a perfect thing for them to use with their frontline staff.

Additionally, you could offer to teach a workshop for the employees about beer styles and serving...You might be able to do it for trade on some hops or malts or something? Not to mention free beer. :D
 

zoebisch01

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Somebody should dig up Evan!'s thread (I think it was Evan!) or maybe it wasn't hmmmm...
 

homebrewer_99

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Actually, Americans don't really "tip" at all.

TIP, if I remember correctly, used to be an acronym meaning "to insure promptness".

In reality, the only person who would get a "tip" would be a matri'd as he would get you a table quick...service is another thing...but this is where the waiter/waitress comes in...if they know yo uare a good "tipper" then they will serve you first/faster...

I DETEST restaurants that basically "steal" gratuities from me when there are more than 8 to a party. They already know they will get a tip regardless of the service rendered.

A "gratuity" of the other hand is a form of payment for good/excellent service...

Anyone who's ever spent time in Europe knows that tip and taxes are already added into the price on the menu...the price quoted is the total price. Nothing else is added. If you want to round up and give the waiter/waiteress more that's your decision. It's a very easy system.

However, in America they put the responsibility of paying staff on to the customer...sounds like too many lawyers got in on that one too!

Wages are from employers, gratuities are from customers...tips...just a common usage word that means diddly anymore...unless you're not getting any...then I recommend changing your attitude or profession.

(That last comment was NOT directed at anyone, it was just a general statement and my opinion). ;)
 

sirsloop

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"I ASKED FOR A PINT AND GOT 12 OUNCES SO I'M ONLY PAYING $3.75 INSTEAD OF $5.00!!!!!!!!!!!"

lol...
 

rdwj

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sirsloop said:
"I ASKED FOR A PINT AND GOT 12 OUNCES SO I'M ONLY PAYING $3.75 INSTEAD OF $5.00!!!!!!!!!!!"

lol...
Good god - I remember that rant. I had some serious eye rolling going on!

:rolleyes:
 

david_42

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The only place I've been in that was obsessed with using the correct glass is the Toronado in SF. Most places have pints and glasses. Once in a while, I'll see special glasses for barley wines and Imperials. In 15 years of drinking craft brews, I have not been able to convince myself that the glass matters.
 

rdwj

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david_42 said:
The only place I've been in that was obsessed with using the correct glass is the Toronado in SF. Most places have pints and glasses. Once in a while, I'll see special glasses for barley wines and Imperials. In 15 years of drinking craft brews, I have not been able to convince myself that the glass matters.
Glassware is almost 100% EAC factor IMHO, but I DO appreciate the effort of a proper glass. We have a place near me that is almost obsessed with the proper glass and the wait staff is amazing. They're all commercial brews, but the selection is out of this world and the food is great too.

Bavarian Lodge - check out the beer list. We had our annual SNIZZLE holiday dinner there. You gotta love a beer menu that says, "And if you don't like beer - Miller Lite".
 

Sir Humpsalot

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Goose Island Brew Pub is also obsessed with knowing their beers. The staff is very knowledgeable about their beers and if you are unsure, they sometimes pour you a sample or two without you even asking.
 

sirsloop

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I think the glass does play a somewhat important role in the experience. If it didn't then you would be just as content about drinking beer from a plastic solo cup as you would from a belgian beer goblet. If I ordered some Chimay and it came in a solo cup I would be like, WTF!??! Even if it tastes exactly the same, the overall experience is going to be better with a fancy cup. Heck, even the bottle makes a difference! Look at Guiness and Grolsch. Both beers, IMHO, and mediocre at best but people love flip tops and they love the beer gas widget.
 

Monster Mash

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I took my wife out to dinner last week and the restaurant was packed. We sat at the bar and waited for our table, they only had Fat Tire, Bass and a wheat of some sort.

I got the Fat Tire and it was oxidized, the bartender asked if I liked it and I told him. He was very interested in what that meant so he poured a little and took a sip, I told him to look for the cardboard aftertaste and he got it. It was crouded but he really wanted to know the causes and what other off flavors to look for.

He gave me a pint of Bass for free before we got our table....
 

homebrewer_99

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The proper glass is all about the experience.

I will not drink beer out of a plastic cup, a bottle, or a can...EVER!!

Am I an EAC???, Nah, probably more of just the C part...:rockin: :D

Last time I was on travel I used the coffee pot in the hotel room..., but it was glass!! ;)
 

Sir Humpsalot

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[off topic] Yeah, there's definitely "something" to the taste you get from the "right" glass. Off-the-wall or really unusual-tasting beers are the ones that most benefit from them because the glass can "round out" the flavor, such as using a wider mouth an an over-hopped beer to dissipate the aroma... or a smaller mouth to concentrate it. No magic there, just basic science about surface area and things like that.

But as for glass vs. plastic, that's a whole other ball of wax. That gets into the idea of luxury and comfort. Glass is just luxurious. It feels good. It will always feel superior to plastic. And, similarly, an especially well-crafted glass glass is just plain going to feel better than a boring glass. That's another aspect of the glass-for-each-beer idea... you match the shape of the glass.. but you also match the feeling and specialness.

[/off-topic]


cheers!
 

Moonshae

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I've always found it better to leave a tiny gratuity than none at all...to show the lousy server that I didn't just forget.
 

Boerderij_Kabouter

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I find poor quality servers inexcusable! I Milwaukee we have many fantastic beers bars and brewpubs. Any given stop the people behind the bar will know more than the average consumer and at least be able to recomend a beer for a person. Whether they are interested or no I don't care, but you are not just someone pouring beer if you work at a resteraunt or bar that has a fantastic list. I would definately not have tipped that guy and I would contact his supervisor.

I have a great irish/english/american pub near my house with an incredible tap list of english beers and I love to go there for a pint. But this idiot kid behind the bar has not even sampled most of the beers and openly states to customers that he doesn't like them, they probably won't either, and they shoudl get a miller! Idiot! I have lectured him (good heartedly) numerous times and counseled the patrons on what to order and they are always happy with what they get. Totally ridiculous!!!! People like those guys just chap my @ss.

Now I am all riled up. I need a beer... 2.5 hours and counting...
 

zoebisch01

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Moonshae said:
I've always found it better to leave a tiny gratuity than none at all...to show the lousy server that I didn't just forget.
Yup, that's a great point, and traditionally the 'insult tip' is 2¢.
 

rdwj

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zoebisch01 said:
Yup, that's a great point, and traditionally the 'insult tip' is 2¢.
I've done that on rare occasion. It says, "No, I didn't forget. I even went the extra mile to rub your nose in it".
 

Rhoobarb

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+1 on leaving a miniscule tip. Yep, let's them know you didn't just forget.

homebrewer_99 said:
...Last time I was on travel I used the coffee pot in the hotel room..., but it was glass!!
:off: Eeww, HB! Never, never drink out of the hotel room coffee pot! If you do, bring along some Iodophor, Star-San or bleach to clean it with first. The housekeeping staff uses the same towel to wipe down that coffee pot that they use to clean the toilet!

If anyone is reading this in their hotel room, sorry to spoil your day.:eek:
 

EinGutesBier

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I think that what PTN when through is terrible. Shame on that bar tender.

At the brewery I work at, there is a nice, big, lavish tasting room and I get all sorts of people there from all walks of life. Usually, they come in because they're interested to try something new and learn about beer. I do my very best to accommodate them in that. In fact, that part isn't even work, that's fun...that's what I do in my free time - preach to people about beer and "educate" them with whatever I know. Because I work with the brew master in the back, I have an intimate knowledge and pride in what's served up front. I like to think that everyone who comes to the tasting lounge leave more beer savvy than when they came, or at least had a good conversation with a certified "guy who likes beer" (GWLB).

End of OP support rant.
 

flyboy

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HBDrinker008 said:
Personally I am usually against talking to management about poor employees. The guy may have been terrible, but I don't like to take it personally and I don't think that it is worth possibly getting the guy fired over something so trivial. I usually just decide not to come back. Thats not a shot at you, I am just saying
I've found that the managment is a reflection of their employees. If the bartender doesn't give a crap it's likely that the manager feels the same way. Chalk this pub up as one you'll never return to and take your business elseware where they appreciate you and yor beer. :).
 
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