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#1 lizzy

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 12:42 PM

hi all
i just wanted to tell everyone of my very bad night out on saturday. first of all we have a gift certificate for a restaurant and bar but since i got glutened there we decided to use the gift cert in the bar instead so on saturday evening we called for a glass of wine and the girl served us and when i came to put the glass to my mouth i could smell coconut i said to my husband that it smelt like malibu anyway he picked up his drink and said the same , we had seen this girl rubbing her hands together so my husband called her over and asked have you been putting hand lotion on she was really pleased someone had asked her and was excited to tell us that it was coconut and lime. he said well thats really nice but we dont want it on our glassers as we can taste it, well she was really upset she was looking at us and you could see that she was looking at her hands and thinking i have just put this on and i dont want to wash it off so instead of doing just that she called somone else over to pour us some fresh drinks, i was angry as with lotion theirs wheat protine in them i went to the manager and told him that we wasnt happy that she should wash her hands that handling drinks is like handling food and for poeple like me who have food allergys cant stand to be sick from someone as carless as her. she pulled the girl out but instead of washing her hands she just applied even more with a smug look on her face that we where being laughed at. we left because i wasnt too happy and by the time i got home becuase i was upset it started me out into a very bad siezure episode which left me unresponsive a couple of times and scared my family. i dont remember it but its taken me three days to get over the episode, how can poeple be so irresposible , i will never go they again no matter we have money left to spend i will give it somone else, anyway i just wanted to vent my angry . thanks for reading liz
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#2 CeliaCruz

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 01:22 PM

Actually, handling drinks isn't just like handling food. I used to bartend and the sanitation issues are different than the ones in kitchens. First off, a bartender's hands are usually clean because he or she is often washing glasses -- and thus a lot of us have to apply hand cream frequently. Secondly, because bartenders are serving liquid, there isn't a lot of opportunity for the bartender to actually contaminate said liquid with his/her hands because you are only pouring from one vessel to the other...unlike a chef who is actually putting his hands in the food in order to prepare it. I mean, sure you theoretically could stick your hand into someone's martini in order to stir it, but generally -- unlike a kitchen -- bartenders are working behind a bar in front of an "audience" who will witness what they are doing so this rarely happens. Thirdly, a bartender generally doesn't touch the lip of a glass (or bottle). If you are pouring wine, you are generally holding the wine bottle at the base (not the neck) and if you are holding the glass while you pour, you should be holding it at the stem (far from the top where the customers' lips will come in contact with the glass). And that's how you should be holding it while you serve it to the customer. Furthermore, that's not just sanitation. It looks clumsy if you don't do it properly and bartenders generally like to look good while they do their thing -- your tips will reflect this.

Believe me, I'm a very sympathetic Celiac, but this woman had every right to apply hand cream. What she's not allowed to do -- handcream or no -- is touch the part of your wine glass where your lips come into contact with the glass. If she did that -- and you might want to sit at the actual bar itself and watch your drinks being prepared to make sure everything is done properly -- then the best thing to do is politely say, "hey, I can smell your handcream on the glass, could you wipe this down for me? I'm sure you didn't touch the rim, but I just want to be sure!" They'll either wipe the cream off or (most likely) pour you another glass. Celiac doesn't even need to be brought into the situation. And you don't need to piss off the person who is serving you drinks. That is never a good idea.
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#3 lizzy

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 01:43 PM

Actually, handling drinks isn't just like handling food. I used to bartend and the sanitation issues are different than the ones in kitchens. First off, a bartender's hands are usually clean because he or she is often washing glasses -- and thus a lot of us have to apply hand cream frequently. Secondly, because bartenders are serving liquid, there isn't a lot of opportunity for the bartender to actually contaminate said liquid with his/her hands because you are only pouring from one vessel to the other...unlike a chef who is actually putting his hands in the food in order to prepare it. I mean, sure you theoretically could stick your hand into someone's martini in order to stir it, but generally -- unlike a kitchen -- bartenders are working behind a bar in front of an "audience" who will witness what they are doing so this rarely happens. Thirdly, a bartender generally doesn't touch the lip of a glass (or bottle). If you are pouring wine, you are generally holding the wine bottle at the base (not the neck) and if you are holding the glass while you pour, you should be holding it at the stem (far from the top where the customers' lips will come in contact with the glass). And that's how you should be holding it while you serve it to the customer. Furthermore, that's not just sanitation. It looks clumsy if you don't do it properly and bartenders generally like to look good while they do their thing -- your tips will reflect this.

Believe me, I'm a very sympathetic Celiac, but this woman had every right to apply hand cream. What she's not allowed to do -- handcream or no -- is touch the part of your wine glass where your lips come into contact with the glass. If she did that -- and you might want to sit at the actual bar itself and watch your drinks being prepared to make sure everything is done properly -- then the best thing to do is politely say, "hey, I can smell your handcream on the glass, could you wipe this down for me? I'm sure you didn't touch the rim, but I just want to be sure!" They'll either wipe the cream off or (most likely) pour you another glass. Celiac doesn't even need to be brought into the situation. And you don't need to piss off the person who is serving you drinks. That is never a good idea.



Acttuly for your information we where sat at the bar and she did handle the glass from the rim and not from the base as we where watching her whilst serving other people they drinks and you are wrong i did a sanitation course and have certificate to prove it and bartenders like cooks need to keep they hands clean like when you put a piece of lemon or lime and put it in a drink you need to do it with a cocktail stick not like her who just picked it up with her fingers. i dont want handcream flavored wine nor my husband rum and coke and have every right to complain plus she wasnt washing up the glassers either this is a very big establisment and they put them through a dishwasher not by hand, you might have worked in a small bar which this was included in you duties but here they have people to wash these things up nor do i expect to see the bar attendant too busy putting on her lipstick that she dosent notice pepole stood at the bar to be served this person was far more interested in looking the part than doing her job and if i want to piss her off i will and as for this isnt a celiac thing then why is it then we keep away from lotions and shampoos that contain gluten i dont want it, in my mouth i dont use it myself because its not safe nor do i want other people to use and contaminate me. on here poeple say that kissing a loved one whos lipstick or face cream as given them a reaction, isnt this the same its on the rim of the glass i put it to my mouth i get in it in there.
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#4 Rachel--24

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 02:21 PM

I agree, it's your right as a paying customer to be treated as such. I dont think that the situation was handeled properly and I would complain even higher up. Regardless of where she touched the glass, your complaint was not taken seriously and she was allowed to mock you by applying more lotion with a smug look on her face. Doesnt sound like a place that values their customers to me. However if you came accross angry and rude initially (I have no idea whether you were or weren't) you probably wouldnt get the response you were looking for. Its always best to be polite and in return you should be treated the same.
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#5 chad from fla

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 04:19 PM

Acttuly for your information we where sat at the bar and she did handle the glass from the rim and not from the base as we where watching her whilst serving other people they drinks and you are wrong i did a sanitation course and have certificate to prove it and bartenders like cooks need to keep they hands clean like when you put a piece of lemon or lime and put it in a drink you need to do it with a cocktail stick not like her who just picked it up with her fingers.


If this woman had enough handcream on her hands to leave a residual smell on your glass, she also left a visible set of fingerprints on the rim. That's all you need. Hold it up to the light and tell a manager that your glass is dirty and you need a fresh drink. The manager will see the telltale fingerprints and realize that your waitress is mishanding the wine glasses and will probably speak to her. (Unless he's sleeping with her -- heh!) Unfortunately if you start babbling on about a disease no one has ever heard of and the dangers of wheat protein in some cocktail waitress's hand cream, they are going to assume you are crazy and write you off as one of "those" customers who is just never going to be satisfied. I mean most of our doctors are unfamiliar with Celiac. Why would you assume that some bartender wouldn't be too? I'm not saying it's fair or just, but if you want to drink at a bar and have your specific needs met, you need to employ some diplomacy. Otherwise, yeah, you're going to get the smug treatment.
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#6 CeliaCruz

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 05:13 PM

Acttuly for your information we where sat at the bar and she did handle the glass from the rim and not from the base as we where watching her whilst serving other people they drinks and you are wrong i did a sanitation course and have certificate to prove it and bartenders like cooks need to keep they hands clean like when you put a piece of lemon or lime and put it in a drink you need to do it with a cocktail stick not like her who just picked it up with her fingers. i dont want handcream flavored wine nor my husband rum and coke and have every right to complain plus she wasnt washing up the glassers either this is a very big establisment and they put them through a dishwasher not by hand, you might have worked in a small bar which this was included in you duties but here they have people to wash these things up nor do i expect to see the bar attendant too busy putting on her lipstick that she dosent notice pepole stood at the bar to be served this person was far more interested in looking the part than doing her job and if i want to piss her off i will and as for this isnt a celiac thing then why is it then we keep away from lotions and shampoos that contain gluten i dont want it, in my mouth i dont use it myself because its not safe nor do i want other people to use and contaminate me. on here poeple say that kissing a loved one whos lipstick or face cream as given them a reaction, isnt this the same its on the rim of the glass i put it to my mouth i get in it in there.


Here's the deal. While there is such a thing as "bartending school" (where they teach sanitation issues and such), most bartenders have not attended such an institution. I never attended one. Most bartenders (and practically ALL cocktail waitresses) are hired on the basis of a) their personality, B) their looks, c) their past experience, d) how well they know the owner or e) some combination thereof. It's not fair, but it's the law of the jungle. If, as you claim, this is a larger establishment, they probably have some sort of in house training program where they school their employees on proper serving procedures. As Chad just said, this woman probably left a set of prints on the rim of your glass (if she actually touched the rim) and therefore she violated the terms of her training and a manager needs to step in and either remind her not to mishandle the stemware (if she's new), retrain her, or fire her. If she touched the rim of your glass, she's touched other people's rims too and this wouldn't be the first time she's been the subject of a complaint. Keep in mind that non-Celiacs don't like drinking from dirty glasses either. Unfortunately you made the issue about your disease and shifted the focus from her negligence to the state of your own health (i.e. a genetic disorder that she has little control over) and the manager probably took her side (and probably even apologized to her for having to deal with such a "crazy" customer).

Also? You had a gift certificate. And you mentioned that you'd only been there once before and hadn't been back because you'd been glutened. YES, people with gift certificates deserve to be treated just like any other paying customer, but when I bartended and someone with a gift certificate starting giving me grief, I always tried to be nice and resolve the situation as best as I could, but in the back of my mind I'd be thinking, "this person is only here to redeem a gift certificate. They don't eat out very often, they're not tipping and they're not coming back regardless of how good or bad the service is" and at some point I'd just cut my losses and try to get them out of there as soon as possible. In a perfect world the customer is always right no matter how they are paying, but waiters, bartenders and restaurant/bar managers are human beings and can only deal with so much before they disengage from what seems to be a no-win situation.
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#7 VegasCeliacBuckeye

 
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Posted 18 January 2006 - 05:16 PM

I used to bartend too (5 years) and I never used hand creme. Perhaps it is a female thing, but there is a difference between basic hand creme and the multi-flavored coconut tanning oil that some girls apply to their skin.

In any event, if the product you are using causes the glass to become "dirty" or to smell bad, you ARE DOING SOMETHING WRONG!

Personally, I consider it un-professional to apply hand creme in a working environment like a restaurant (which I am sure the owner of most restaurants would agree).

Bartenders (and servers) should technically only be touching the stem of the wine glasses (this prevents smears and fingerprints) when pouring and serving the glasses to their guests. What this girl did was unprofessional and borderline disgusting --

If I were you, I would write a letter to the owner/corporation of the company -- she should never (a) apply cosmetics in front of guests ( b ) not wash her hands after doing so ( c ) never serve you a dirty glass of wine (d) or look at you inappropriately and unprofessionally afterwards (e) and the manager should have gotten rid of the glassware and poured you a clean glass of wine WITH A SMILE ON HIS FACE....that is the business!!!

JMO
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#8 lizzy

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 07:15 AM

I agree, it's your right as a paying customer to be treated as such. I dont think that the situation was handeled properly and I would complain even higher up. Regardless of where she touched the glass, your complaint was not taken seriously and she was allowed to mock you by applying more lotion with a smug look on her face. Doesnt sound like a place that values their customers to me. However if you came accross angry and rude initially (I have no idea whether you were or weren't) you probably wouldnt get the response you were looking for. Its always best to be polite and in return you should be treated the same.



hi rachel
no i wasnt rude or angry when i put in the compliant we asked her nicly to change the drinks but she was all bent out of shape because she didnt want to wash her hands to do it, i spoke with her manager and again just explianed the situation to them that i didnt want my white wine smelling and tasting of coconut.that she should wash it off.
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#9 lizzy

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 07:36 AM

Here's the deal. While there is such a thing as "bartending school" (where they teach sanitation issues and such), most bartenders have not attended such an institution. I never attended one. Most bartenders (and practically ALL cocktail waitresses) are hired on the basis of a) their personality, B) their looks, c) their past experience, d) how well they know the owner or e) some combination thereof. It's not fair, but it's the law of the jungle. If, as you claim, this is a larger establishment, they probably have some sort of in house training program where they school their employees on proper serving procedures. As Chad just said, this woman probably left a set of prints on the rim of your glass (if she actually touched the rim) and therefore she violated the terms of her training and a manager needs to step in and either remind her not to mishandle the stemware (if she's new), retrain her, or fire her. If she touched the rim of your glass, she's touched other people's rims too and this wouldn't be the first time she's been the subject of a complaint. Keep in mind that non-Celiacs don't like drinking from dirty glasses either. Unfortunately you made the issue about your disease and shifted the focus from her negligence to the state of your own health (i.e. a genetic disorder that she has little control over) and the manager probably took her side (and probably even apologized to her for having to deal with such a "crazy" customer).

Also? You had a gift certificate. And you mentioned that you'd only been there once before and hadn't been back because you'd been glutened. YES, people with gift certificates deserve to be treated just like any other paying customer, but when I bartended and someone with a gift certificate starting giving me grief, I always tried to be nice and resolve the situation as best as I could, but in the back of my mind I'd be thinking, "this person is only here to redeem a gift certificate. They don't eat out very often, they're not tipping and they're not coming back regardless of how good or bad the service is" and at some point I'd just cut my losses and try to get them out of there as soon as possible. In a perfect world the customer is always right no matter how they are paying, but waiters, bartenders and restaurant/bar managers are human beings and can only deal with so much before they disengage from what seems to be a no-win situation.



actuly the reason we got the gift certificate is because we used to go they on a regular basis until i got sick and they cant offer me a safe eating enviroment is why we dont go to eat they but they do have a good bar which to enjoy a drink and some music we also know the poeple who play they every saturday night and we go to listen to them we also leave good tips i never leave without saying thank you to them . the only reason like i say we havent been for a while is because i only have been gluten free for 3 months and have been trying to get better. if u treat your customers with gift certs that way then i feel sorry for them, also she wasnt aware that it was a gift cert until we came to leave but let me tell you she didnt recieve the tip we would and usualy leave. she didnt get a penny.
but i still have 50 dollars left to spend and i will be back there this weekend to use it up and i will be watching her if shes still there , it seems to me everytime we go in the bar the staff is new i have yet to go they and find the same bar staff. i told my husband who its his work friends who gave the certificate and do so each year that maybe they should pick another place next xmas.
we go out usually every friday or saturday night and we have never had to complian about the service we recieve, we always get some very pleasent bar staff in fact we go back to one bar just because of this . i dont go out of my way to complian about anyone i have worked behind a bar too and know that it is a tyring job at times but also a fun job too.
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#10 VegasCeliacBuckeye

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 08:54 AM

Lizzy,

At restaurants where the employees are properly trained, guests with gift certificates don't get treated that way.

Personally, I have had occasions where guests came in and paid the check w/ the GC and then threw an extra 20% on top of the tip...it goes both ways...regardless, every guest should be treated the same -- otherwise the server has a problem with their vision of "entitlement"

For what its worth, I am a very good tipper (never under 15%), but I do think many servers get paid too much for the work they actually do...(comes from 10 years of experience in the buisness)

In any case, it is never appropriate for a server to give an atitude or say anything unprofessional to a guest -- NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS! -- you let a manager take care of it if you have a problem with a guest...

JMO
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#11 CeliaCruz

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 12:45 PM

no i wasnt rude or angry when i put in the compliant we asked her nicly to change the drinks but she was all bent out of shape because she didnt want to wash her hands to do it, i spoke with her manager and again just explianed the situation to them that i didnt want my white wine smelling and tasting of coconut.that she should wash it off.


Okay, but didn't you say in your first post that the waitress got someone else to pour you new drinks after you said something to her? If someone gave you a set of new clean drinks, game over, problem solved. There's no need to keep complaining if your grievances have been addressed. Insist that the second server be your designated server and enjoy the rest of your evening. If a server knows that you won't take her crap but will be forgiving if she attempts to resolve the issue, you'll get good service. If a server gets the feeling that nothing she does will stop you from harping on a mistake she made earlier that evening and you're going to complain to her boss anyway, she'll write you off as a loon and continue to apply handcream to her heart's content.

At some point you need to make a decision: do you want to be RIGHT or do you want to enjoy your evening? Sometimes you can't do both.
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#12 lizzy

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 01:50 PM

Okay, but didn't you say in your first post that the waitress got someone else to pour you new drinks after you said something to her? If someone gave you a set of new clean drinks, game over, problem solved. There's no need to keep complaining if your grievances have been addressed. Insist that the second server be your designated server and enjoy the rest of your evening. If a server knows that you won't take her crap but will be forgiving if she attempts to resolve the issue, you'll get good service. If a server gets the feeling that nothing she does will stop you from harping on a mistake she made earlier that evening and you're going to complain to her boss anyway, she'll write you off as a loon and continue to apply handcream to her heart's content.

At some point you need to make a decision: do you want to be RIGHT or do you want to enjoy your evening? Sometimes you can't do both.


the point is that in this place we go usualy the person who first serves you takes care of you all night i dont know how they share they tips or weather they keep what they earn i dont know each place we have visited have they own system and yes once the other girl served us we did leave her something separate to the one who was suppose to take care of us what am harping on about was her attitude towards us it wasnt called for . anyway this is getting no where i dont know why u took this so personaly when i frst posted this message i am a chef but i dont get upset if someone complains about another kitchen i just do my job to the best i can give , but you seem to have taken a fence that i was talking about all bartenders when this wasnt the case. so i think that this post now needs to end i didnt come on here to upset anyone liz
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#13 CeliaCruz

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 02:26 PM

the point is that in this place we go usualy the person who first serves you takes care of you all night i dont know how they share they tips or weather they keep what they earn i dont know each place we have visited have they own system and yes once the other girl served us we did leave her something separate to the one who was suppose to take care of us what am harping on about was her attitude towards us it wasnt called for . anyway this is getting no where i dont know why u took this so personaly when i frst posted this message i am a chef but i dont get upset if someone complains about another kitchen i just do my job to the best i can give , but you seem to have taken a fence that i was talking about all bartenders when this wasnt the case. so i think that this post now needs to end i didnt come on here to upset anyone liz


I wasn't taking offense as a bartender -- I haven't bartended in years -- I was just confused about what your grievance was. If a second server came over and served you a new glass of wine, what was the problem and why were you continuing to complain? (And why -- despite this woman's attitude -- does it bother you that you don't get to keep your original server? I don't get that at all!) You mention that the woman continued to put on handcream...but she wasn't still serving you drinks at that point so what's it to you? If she's continuing to put her stinky, greasy hands all over the rims of people's drinks, let those customers complain. You should be enjoying your wine and the company of your companions, taking pride in the fact that you protected yourself from a potential glutenization and not worrying about the attitude of someone who is no longer your waitress. It seems like it wasn't enough for you to have the problem solved -- you also had to have some sort of blood-vengeance too. And if this woman sensed that you were gunning for her (it certainly sounds like you were staring angrily at her for the rest of the evening!) she probably decided to have some fun at your expense and apply some more handcream just to watch you flip out.

If I am offended, it's not because I used to bartend, it's because I'm a Celiac. There are quite enough people in this world who think I'm crazy because I have to avoid gluten. And then when I hear stories like yours I think, oh great, the next time that waitress (or that manager) encounters a Celiac, she'll just assume that he or she is some crazy angry person like the last one she encountered. I'm not saying you're crazy, but it sounds like you came off that way to the staff of that restaurant and that's why I can't get behind your behavior. You had an opportunity to educate someone about our disease and instead it sounds like you alienated her.
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#14 VegasCeliacBuckeye

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 02:49 PM

Whatever,

The girl should not have been applying cosmetics in the restaurant.....end of story.

The girl should not have given looks or atitude...end of story

Lizz, Its not your fault, its the waitresses and managers fault for allowing it to happen...sometimes servers forget they are in the hospitality buisness...

Write a letter to the owner regarding her actions -- she couldn;t have been too busy at the restaurant if she had time to apply cosmetics and make fun of guests -- if that is my restaurant, I would be furious if I got a letter telling me a server did that in front of a guest and while she WAS ON THE CLOCK!!

I am the first one to cut a server some slack if they are slammed and too busy, but in this case, I would stand up for myself and not allow an employee to treat me with such ill regard.
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#15 lizzy

 
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Posted 19 January 2006 - 02:50 PM

i didnt tell the manager that i had celiac i said food allergys and i was concerned that because of her hygene that other poeple will suffer i had already had a drink from the glass and could taste it but other poeple dont need to suffer, she was putting hand lotion on her hands and her elbows apply lipstick whilst stood behind the bar instead of serving other customers who also looked at her for ignoring them ,she was too busy looking after her looks. it was my oppion she didnt really care enough about her customers and when we asked her to change our drinks it was the whole way of which she did it it was done with no thought to us just begrudgenly. i certantly wouldnt have found the need to complian if she had just been pleasant enough to say sorry ill get some one else but she didnt she shouted over to someone and it was how she said it like we where always complaining when this is the first time i have ever felt the need to do so. it was her whole attetude. i have worked behind a bar and have always put my customers first i have had to deal with poeple who like to complian for the sake of it but i have never been rude to them. and am not crazy either. when your paying 9 dollars for a glass of wine then i expect to taste the wine not someones hand lotion
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