BEWARE! Be careful to check you bill and receipt.
Here is a place on Union St. in Wilmington that is a cheap imitation of NOLA, but has some great food & good music. Please understand, I like this place.
However, after enjoying a good meal tonight (3/17/12), my wife dutifully checked the tab and noticed that a tip had already been included in the bill.
I'm talking about a party of three occupying a high-top for dinner. I'm not talking about a recommended tip, but an amount included in the bottom line.
They added, without notice of any type, 18% to the tab. When questioned about this added "fee", the manager's response was, "but it is underlined" and "we've been doing this for months".
I may be old school, but I'm still of the opinion that I will determine a gratuity for services rendered, not the restaurant's management.
The party of three, including my wife, a friend and myself, has an accrued experience span of more the 45 years in the bar/restaurant business. By arbitrarily adding a predetermined gratuity, the management probably cost that server at least another 5%-7%.
But my major concern is the fee, this is not a tip, that is fraudulently taken with no consideration to the customer.
Even moreso, without notice, I'm curious as to how many people don't realize there has been a tacked-on fee. And on top of that assumed gratuity, if they are unknowling including the amount in the total upon which they may be determining their voluntary gratuity.