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nightmare before christmas: the dreaded "bill-split"

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nightmare before christmas: the dreaded "bill-split"

wow i'm a dog | Dec 4, 2005 06:59 PM

i would like your opinion and advice on a situation we encountered last evening that is continuing to peeve us into today.

we were invited to a celebratory dinner at an upscale restaurant. note: the host of the event is also sort of a superior to my better half. the superior's wife ordered three bottles of wine for the table and most everyone had a steak (except me: vegan, who had a salad and a vegetable plate) . the table shared salads and sides. since i was driving, i had about one taste of each bottle.

when the bill arrived, the wife took the bill and then proceeded to pass it to us and then to the other guests.

what we thought was going to be about a $100 evening in fact turned out to be a $320 evening because the wine she ordered was (from what we estimate) about $150 per bottle, which she did not communicate to us.

please know that i am not one of those people that squabble over a bill and in fact, detest that so much that generally my better half and i like to pick-up the tab when dining out with friends. that said, this amount is not within our budget, especially not before the holidays. of course, we paid without a hint of our discomfort and that was that.

however, i am curious as to the following:
1. maybe i'm old-fashioned, but we assumed since we were invited to this dinner (celebrating the host) and since they made the reservation, planned the seating and selected the wine, that they would be providing the meal. what do you think? also, does the fact that he is a superior to us mean anything?
2. apart from avoiding dining with them again, what is the appropriate etiquette to avoid this situation in the future? do we discuss wine options/prices before ordering?
3. would you be steamed, too? or are we just being petty?

thanks.

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