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How to Properly Sell a Drink

Selling a drink in a restaurant is simple enough, right? The waiter takes the order, the bartender pours the drink, and the waiter delivers it to the table. And then hopefully the customer leaves a big tip.

 

Well…yes and no. Complications arise when you have potentially underage customers who are trying to buy drinks. Or you have undercover agents attempting to catch out servers who aren’t following compliance guidelines.

 

Here are two scenarios to illustrate the right and wrong way to sell a drink in a restaurant setting.

 

Scenario 1:

Waiter: Can I get you something to drink to start off your night?

Customer 1: Sure, I’ll have a glass of your house red.

Customer 2: I’ll have a margarita. On the rocks.

(Waiter leaves to enter order into the computer, grabs the drinks from the bar, and returns.)

Waiter: Here are your drinks. And can I see your IDs?

Customer 1: (taking a sip of wine) Oh, darn, I forgot my ID at home.

 

Scenario 2:

Waiter: Can I get you something to drink to start off your night?

Customer 1: Sure, I’ll have a glass of your house red.

Customer 2: I’ll have a margarita. On the rocks.

Waiter: (looking at the couple and deciding that they definitely look under 35). Ok great. Can I just see your IDs first?

Customer 1: Darn, I forgot mine at home.

Waiter: I’m very sorry, but I won’t be able to serve you alcohol tonight. Can I get you something else to drink?

 

 

Properly Selling Drinks Means Avoiding Stings

 

You guessed it: Scenario 2 shows the proper way to sell drinks in a restaurant. In this scenario, the waiter discovers that the customer doesn’t have proper ID BEFORE he hands over the drink (or awkwardly holds it on his tray). Sure, the customer may have really forgotten her ID. But it’s also possible that she is underage OR that she is undercover and trying to test the company’s IDing practices.

 

Because of the possibility of the latter two situations, it is essential to train servers to ask for ID before the drinks are brought to the table. This protects underage customers and it protects the business from a failed sting.

 

Have more questions about how to firm up your compliance efforts? Contact us at 1-877-540-5500 or at customerservice@barsprogram.com.

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