AJAR.id – Hello Ajarian! After the order has been taken and a copy transferred to the kitchen, either manually or electronically, the service staff will have to make any necessary changes to the cover to reflect the dishes that diners have ordered.
It is now time to adjust the setting with certain items of cutlery, glassware and service wear depending on the dishes and drinks they have ordered.
Always remember that cutlery should be carried to and from the table on a clothed service plate. Cutlery may only be carried in the hand if it is a hotel requirement.
It is a requirement that all covers are adjusted before any menu items are delivered to the table. Note however that some establishments require that dessert cutlery is only adjusted after the guests have completed their main course, and some establishments have a standard requirement that covers are not adjusted at all. If the guest doesn’t order a certain course, the cutlery stays on the cover until the table is cleared. Your copy of the order for the table provides the basis for determining what needs to be adjusted for each diner.
Adjusting the cover may mean you have to:
- Remove cutlery for courses that have not been ordered
- Exchange cutlery where necessary such as swapping the main course knife for a steak knife where steak has been ordered and swapping the main course gear for fish gear where fish has been ordered
- Add cutlery for dishes that have been ordered where no suitable cutlery has been set. For example, if the cover did not include a soup spoon and the guest ordered soup, there would be a need to adjust the cover by adding a soup spoon.
Most table set ups will include standard wine glasses, with many establishments also setting water glasses. Where the guests order certain drinks and the correct glassware is not already set this will require you to:
- Remove the glassware that is not needed
- Replace it with the appropriate glasses.
It is standard industry practice that all glasses be removed from a table, and carried to a table on a tray. Glasses should be removed and set/re-set from the guest’s right-hand side.
Practical examples of the need to adjust glasses may include:
- Removing all wine glasses where guests elect not to order any bottles of wine
- Removing the white wine glass that was set and replacing it with a larger red wine glass if the guest orders red wine
- Adding a red wine glass if only a white wine glass was set and the table has ordered both red and white wine
- Removing the set glasses and replacing them with champagne flutes where a sparkling wine is ordered.
Adjusting service wear
Depending on the dishes ordered and the style of service being used, there can be a need to provide various items of service wear to individual tables.
Service wear may need to be provided as follows:
- Where the service style presents, for example, the vegetables to the entire table, as opposed to plating vegetables onto individual guest plates in the kitchen, there will be a need to use service platters
- Where customers order sauces or gravy there may be a need to provide sauce boats
- Where the guest has brought in their own cake or arranged for the venue to supply one, there may be a need to use a cake stand
- Where guests order snails there will be a need to provide snail forks and tongs
- Where guests order lobster there may be a need to provide lobster picks and crackers
- Where a soup is served to the entire table, a soup tureen may be required.
Read also: How to Sell Menu Items and Drinks Proactively
Nurturing You to Grow®
Written by: Alan Hickman, Nick Hyland
Subject Matter: Provide food and beverage services