Advocacy >> Restaurant Advocacy
The Top 15 - Best Practice Tips for Wait Staff
1. Upon greeting a new table, ask patrons to notify you of any allergies, prior to placing their order.
2. If a diner inquires, or makes a special request, about a particular item in a dish (e.g. “No nuts,” “No egg,” “Does it contain?” etc.), confirm whether the inquiry is an allergy, or a preference.
3. When notified of an allergy, immediately inform appropriate management team members and the kitchen chef. Notify fellow wait staff about the food allergic diner and to avoid “running” food to the table.
4. Request that a management team member handle point of contact throughout the diner's entire meal.
5. Never assume that a dish is free of an item, without first confirming with the kitchen chef or manager.
6. Beverages from the bar should not be overlooked. Many mixers, garnishes, and some spirits may contain allergens. Always check with the bartender and management team when a drink order is placed.
7. When placing a meal order, ask management to review the special order prior to sending it to the kitchen, and immediately discuss the order with the chef. Order the meal independently from other meals being served for the table.
8. Prior to delivering each dish to the table, the dish should be confirmed with the kitchen chef and/or manager that it is “ready to go”. This includes salads, soup, appetizers, main course, etc.
9. To avoid cross contact, always use a new glass when re-filling the food allergic diners drink.
10. During a shift change, notify management, the kitchen chef, and new wait staff of the allergy and status of the diner's meal. Introduce the customer to their new server and/or management team member.
11. Wash your hands prior to carrying the dish to the table, and always carry the dish by placing it in the palm of your hand, or on a tray, and being sure to never touch the rims of the dish. Do not carry the dish with other meals.
12. Wash all utensils intended for use by the food allergic diner.
13. If the diner states the meal has been prepared incorrectly, leave the dish at the table and then inform management and the kitchen chef. Follow the same procedures as listed above when ordering the new meal.
14. Review the signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction and your restaurant's policy on how to handle an emergency situation. Act quickly in the event of an emergency and call