Nashville restaurant makes it easy for diners to buy their cooks a round of beer


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/01/26/nashville-restaurant-makes-it.html


#2

This is an excellent idea. When I was in kitchens the relationship betwixt crew and customers tended to be a bit adversarial, which, it would be hard to say is a good thing.
Also, the two beer limit, after shift… good too. In my experience with the drinking in kitchens, it’s either none at all or way too much.

Miller though… bad idea.


#3

I know, right? Why can’t there be an option to buy one or two pints of guinness for the staff, which is added to a “pool” that the kitchen empties every friday?


#4

That’s a good idea. Maybe they should expand that, for people who don’t want to buy their cooks alcohol. “Buy the chefs a bowl of pretzels” for $10?


#5

Because food is free for kitchen staff, mostly.


#6

Hyde says as many as 10 customers a night will buy six-packs of Miller High Life (it’s the only canned beer sold at 715) for the kitchen

Sounds like cruel and unusual punishment if you ask me.


#7

I must be extra grumpy, because all I could think of was that this isn’t JUST tipping the kitchen staff (which, like most tips, go straight to their pockets, and maybe a little to the tax man). Alcohol is consistently one of the biggest profit drivers in the restaurant industry (huge markups, minimal labor). Unless the owner is putting their cost of the beer you’re buying on the menu (not bleeding likely), it’s just another moneymaker for the house, comrades.


#8

Seen this a few places. The Publican in Chicago is supposedly where this originated. Oven + Shaker here in Portland has that on there menus.


#9

It’s not bad on tap, many beers which are bad in cans aren’t when on tap.

The bigger issue is: Where does the rest of that $20 go? I hope in tips to the cooks, because a 6er of high life sure as hell doesn’t cost $20.

I see @Aeroplane mentioned this as well.


#10

One of my favorite restaurants of all time, Chris Schlesinger’s East Coast Grill in Cambridge, MA (now sadly closed) had the same thing going on back as far as the '90s. One often ended up with a complimentary appetizer or dessert…


#11

Can’t say i’d ever be interested in Miller on tap. Even if its better than whats canned i’d rather drink a proper good beer from another brewery.

But i am curious about how that $20 is being distributed. Does the restaurant owner charge for the beers at full price and give whatever is left over to the cooks? Because that would be scummy. Or does he charge the at-cost price and give the cooks all of the remaining money? Somewhere in between?


#12

I thought that too. I only skimmed the article the first time… on a closer read, the $20 price tag is for the offering at SILO. It doesn’t specify the kind of beer, or how it is distributed. Buying the cooks a six-pack of Miller was at a different restaurant, 715,and only costs $12.

Doesn’t answer the larger question though, because even $12 definitely is a markup for a six pack of Miller.


#13

If it said “spend $7 to buy a six-pack of Miller for the kitchen” there would be customers who who expect to get their beers for the same price. The restaurant that offers this menu option (715) is in a college town (Lawrence, KS) so there are definitely some frat bros that would raise a fuss. Incidentally, it’s a great place to eat. I’ve been there many times.


#14

Yeah, color me cynical, but these feels like a way for the restaurant to make money off of the staff getting tips.

So who knows what the $20 is actually being spent on, then. I’m guessing a similar mark-up to the $12 six pack.

“Work in the kitchen here and you get perks. No, not a better wage, but customers can give you tips. Well, not tips, but beer. That you buy from the restaurant.”


#15

Exactly what i was wondering. So is the customer buying the beers for the kitchen staff at the markup or not? The customer doesn’t need to know what the price of the six pack is, but the difference matters because the restaurant owner would be pocketing a nice profit off of what is supposed to be a tip for his employees. If the beers are being bought for at cost or a minimal markup and the beers given to them and the remainder as an actual tip that would be a better and more fair circumstance.


#16

Funny enough, I was just visiting Lawrence this past weekend and the whole family dined as 715. I don’t recall seeing the beer for the kitchen on the menu 'cause I definitely would’ve jumped at that one. However, it was restaurant week so their regular menu wasn’t studied in much detail. It may or may not still be there. I suppose I shall have to go back and check next time I’m in KS.


#17

ECG was my absolute favorite restaurant. Spouse and I had dinner there after our wedding!

We bought “a six for the kitch” on several occasions, usually had it met with appreciative hollering.

Man, I miss that place. I’ve always said that their Tuna Taco was my “desert island food”. Seriously, I don’t think I’d ever tire of eating those. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.


#18

A few restaurants around here do that. Buckeye Beer Engine has done it for years and if I remember correctly it is only $6.


#19

Maybe it’s for the whole kitchen staff of 12, and the owner is covering the 2 bucks because they love their staff

hey stop laughing


#20

But it’s “The Champagne Of Beers”