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Wine service in restaurants

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Wine service in restaurants

Darren72 | Jul 21, 2006 07:37 PM

One of my biggest problems eating in restaurants is servers who stop at the table to top off glasses of wine each time he or she passes by. First, I don't like the constant interruption. Second, people drink at different paces, and topping off inevitably leads to one person drinking a lot more than the others. Third, sometimes you want the wine in the glass to aerate and topping it off with "new wine" slows this down. Fourth, I have a gut negative reaction to the idea that the restaurant is trying to sell me a second bottle, and so they want me to hurry up and finish the first one.

I'm not saying servers should never refill wine. I'm saying they should do it much less often than most do, or ask me before refilling. However, given pervasiveness of the topoff, I'd prefer to refill my own glass than have the constant interruption.

Yes, I know there are things I can do about this. Sometimes I move the bottle to a place on the table where the server cannot easily reach it. More commonly, when the server tries to refill the first time (or once I notice he or she is taking the topoff-all-the-time approach) I politely tell him or her that we will do it ourselves. But this can be an awkward moment and sometimes get the evening off on the wrong foot. I wish it wasn't necessary.

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