Restaurant Service

Restaurant Service

The restaurant service practitioner provides high quality food and drink service to guests. A food service practitioner generally works in the commercial sector, offering a range of services to customers. There is a direct relationship between the nature and quality of the service required and the payment made by the guest. Therefore, the practitioner has a continuing responsibility to work professionally and interactively with the guest in order to give satisfaction and thus maintain and grow the business.

The practitioner is likely to work in a hotel or restaurant. However, the size, nature and quality of these establishments can vary enormously from internationally renowned hotel chains to smaller, privately-owned, more intimate restaurants. The quality and level of service provided and expected by guests will also vary. The styles of service will be dependent on the targeted customer and can range from simple self-service operations to elaborate service styles where dishes can be prepared at the guests’ table. In its more elaborate form, food, and drink service can be likened to a form of theatre.

High quality food and drink service requires the practitioner to have extensive knowledge of international cuisine, beverages, and wines. They must have a complete command of accepted serving rules and must know the preparation of speciality dishes and drinks at the guests’ table or in the bar. The food server is the most important person in attending to the guests and providing the meal experience. Skill and resourcefulness, good manners, excellent interaction with guests, aplomb, excellent personal and food hygiene practices, smart appearance, and practical ability are all essential.

A wide range of specialist tools and materials will be used for the service of specialist dishes, drinks, and wines. The practitioner will be familiar with their use in addition to the more usual pieces of equipment that are found in most dining situations.

Irrespective of the working environment, excellent communication, and customer care skills are universal attributes of the outstanding practitioner. Food service personnel will work as part of a team and with other teams in the hotel or restaurant. Whatever the structure of the work, the trained and experienced practitioner takes on a high level of personal responsibility and autonomy. This ranges from safeguarding the health and wellbeing of the guests and colleagues through scrupulous attention to safe and hygienic working practices, to achieving exceptional experiences for special occasions.

With the globalization of gastronomy, the expansion of travel for pleasure and business, and the international mobility of people, staff in the hospitality industry enjoy rapidly expanding opportunities and challenges. For the talented restaurateur there are many commercial and international opportunities; however, these carry with them the need to understand and work with diverse cultures, trends, and environments. The diversity of skills associated with restaurant service is therefore likely to keep expanding.

Score Guidelines:

  • Work organization and management – 5%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • Different types of food service establishment and the styles of food service that they will use
      • The importance of the ambiance of the restaurant to the overall meal experience
      • Target markets for various types of food service establishments
      • Business and financial imperatives when running a food service establishment
      • Relevant legislative and regulatory requirements including health, safety, and environment, food handling and hygiene,and the sale and service of alcohol
      • The importance of working efficiently to minimize wastage and negative impacts on the environment from business activity andto maximize sustainability
      • Ethics linked to the food service industry
      • The importance of effective inter-departmental working
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Present themselves to the guest in a professional manner
      • Demonstrate personal attributes including personal hygiene, smart and professional appearance, demeanor and deportment
      • Organize tasks effectively and plan work flow
      • Consistently demonstrate hygienic and safe work practices
      • Work efficiently so as to minimize waste and any negative impact on the environment
      • Work effectively as part of a team and with other departments within the establishment
      • Always act honestly and ethically in all dealings with customers, colleagues and the employer
      • Be responsive to unexpected or unplanned situations and effectively solve problems as they occur
      • Engage with continuous professional development
      • Prioritize tasks, especially when the individual is dealing with multiple tables
  • Customer service skills and communications - 15%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • The importance of the overall meal experience
      • The importance of effective communications and inter-personal skills when working with customers and colleagues
      • The food server’s role in maximizing sales
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Greet and seat guests appropriate to the service area
      • Provide appropriate advice and guidance based on sound knowledge to the guest on the menu choices as required
      • Take orders accurately from guests
      • Judge the level of communication and interaction appropriate for each guest or group
      • Communicate effectively with guests appropriate to the setting and the guests’ requirements
      • Always be polite and courteous
      • Be attentive without being intrusive
      • Check with customers that everything is satisfactory
      • Observe appropriate table etiquette
      • Deal effectively with guests who are difficult or who complain
      • Communicate effectively with guest who have communication difficulties
      • Recognize and respond to any special needs that a guest may present
      • Liaise effectively with kitchen staff and staff from other departments
      • Present the bill, deal with payment and bid guests farewell
  • Preparation for service (miseen place) – 10%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • A range of standard restaurant materials and equipment including:
        • Cutlery
        • Crockery
        • Glassware
        • Linen
        • Furniture
      • The purposes of specialist equipment used in restaurant service
      • The importance of the presentation and appearance of therestaurant
      • The factors that contribute to creating the right ambiance andatmosphere for dining
      • The tasks to be completed to prepare for service
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Prepare table dressings and decorations
      • Ensure that the room is clean and well presented
      • Prepare the restaurant appropriately for the meal that is to beserved
      • Place tables and chairs appropriately for expected number ofcovers
      • Set tables using the appropriate linen, cutlery, glassware, china,cruets, and additional equipment necessary
      • Create a range of napkin folds for different settings andoccasions
      • Prepare the restaurant for various service styles includingbreakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, casual, a la carte, bar,banqueting, and fine dining service
      • Prepare buffet tables for buffet style service including boxingtable cloths
      • Organize and prepare function rooms in readiness for variousfunction formats
      • Organize and prepare sundry supporting areas, for examplesideboards, still room, and expected accompaniments andcondiments for menu items
  • Food service - 35%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • Food and beverage service styles and techniques
      • When and in what circumstances various food servicetechniques would be used
      • Ingredients, method of cookery, presentation, and service forall dishes on the menu, sufficient to be able to advise guests
      • Current and future trends in restaurant service
      • Range of highly specialized and international cuisines and theirstyles of restaurant service
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Manage the service cycle for different styles of service
      • Correct the cover as required for the dish to be served
      • Professionally and efficiently serve food for different styles ofservice, for example:
        • Plated service;
        • Silver service;
        • Gueridon service;
        • Trolley service
      • Serve food from the Gueridon
      • Prepare, portion, and serve specialist dishes from the Gueridon,including:.
        • Assembly of dishes;
        • Carving of meats;
        • Filleting fish;
        • Preparing and carving fruits;
        • Service of different cheese;
        • Preparing salads and salad dressings;
        • Flambé dishes (meat/dessert)
      • Demonstrate appropriate flare and theatre
      • Clear plates and other items from the customers’ table
      • Crumb down at appropriate times between courses
      • Serve a range of meals including breakfast, lunch, afternoontea, dinner, casual, a la carte, bar, banqueting, and fine diningservice
      • Provide high quality restaurant service in highly specialized orinternational restaurants
      • Create own sweet dishes (flambé) from ingredient list
  • Beverage service– 12.5%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • The range of beverages that may be prepared and served in arestaurant or other outlet
      • How to use specialist equipment properly and safely
      • The range of glassware in which beverages may be served
      • The range of china and glassware in which beverages may beserved
      • The range of china, silver and glassware that may be used suchas sugar bowls, milk and cream jugs, spoons, strainers, tongs,etc.
      • Recognized accompaniments for beverages
      • Trends and fashions in beverage sales and service
      • Techniques and styles of beverage service
      • Names and correct spirits and liqueurs for liqueur coffee
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Serve and clear different types of tea, coffee, and otherbeverages
      • Prepare and serve coffee from a range of specialist machinessuch as espresso, barista, etc.
      • Create own alcoholic and non-alcoholic signature coffee fromingredient list
      • Prepare and serve a range of teas
      • Silver serve teas and coffees and their accompaniments
      • Prepare and serve liqueur coffee
      • Serve teas and coffees at banquets and functions
      • Serve petit fours or sweetmeats as appropriate
  • Alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks service– 12.5%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • The range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks that may beserved in a restaurant
      • The range of glassware and their uses in drinks service
      • The range of accompaniments that are served with alcoholicand non-alcoholic drinks
      • Issues relating to honesty and integrity in regard to alcoholicdrinks
      • Legal requirements relating to the sale and service of alcoholicdrinks
      • Methods of serving drinks in a range of scenarios
      • A range of cocktails, their ingredients, methods of making andservice
      • Servers ethical and moral responsibilities in relation to the saleand service of alcoholic drinks
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Prepare the service area for the service on alcoholic and nonalcoholicdrinks
      • Select glassware and accompaniments for the sale and serviceof alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks
      • Maintain the highest standards of hygiene and cleanlinessduring the sale and service of alcoholic and non-alcoholicdrinks
      • Serve alcoholic drinks within current legislation with regard tomeasures, customers’ ages, service times and locations
      • Pour drinks from bottles, for example beers and ciders
      • Measure drinks using appropriate measures
      • Prepare, serve and clear alcoholic and non-alcoholic beveragesfor different styles of service:
        • At the table;
        • Reception drink service
      • Prepare and serve different styles of cocktail including:
        • Stirred;
        • Shaken;
        • Built;
        • Blended;
        • Muddled;
        • Non-alcoholic
      • Recognize by sight and smell a selection of spirits, fortifiedwines, aperitifs, and liqueurs
      • Create own alcoholicand non-alcoholic cocktails fromingredient list
  • Wine service– 10%
    • The individual needs to know and understand:
      • The wine making process
      • Details of various wines including:
        • Grape variety;
        • Production;
        • Country and region of origin;
        • Vintages;
        • Characteristics;
        • Matching food and wine
      • How wine is stored
      • Method of preparing wine for service
      • Selection of glassware and equipment used in wine service
      • Methods for the service for various wines
      • The use of wine as an accompaniment for food
    • The individual shall be able to:
      • Provide informed advice and guidance to the guest on theselection of wine
      • Identify a range of wines from aroma, taste, and appearance
      • Interpret information on a wine bottle’s label
      • Select and place on the table the appropriate glassware to thechosen wine
      • Present wines to the guest
      • Open wine at the table using accepted equipment. Open winethat has a traditional cork, champagne cork, or screw top
      • Decant or aerate wine when appropriate
      • Offer wine for tasting
      • Pour wine at the table, observing table etiquette
      • Serve wines at their optimum temperature and condition
      • Serve at a reception drinks service, e.g. champagne