Fine dining is a staple in the celebration of happy moments. People want to celebrate their birthdays, successes, weddings, and anniversaries feeling like royalty. But you can’t provide this experience by following the casual restaurant routine. Therefore, learning the steps of service fine dining is necessary.
You don’t want the happy celebrators to return disappointed from your venue. Therefore, your presentation must be swift from start to finish. For this, training your staff for individual steps along the track of fine serving will help.
This type of serving may seem complicated, but you do not have to worry. In this article, you can learn the details of the steps of service fine dining in an understandable sequence. So, let’s take a look.
How Should You Behave With Guests in Fine Dining vs. Casual Dining?
Casual and fine-dining restaurants are not the same. As mentioned, guests don’t enter a fine dining venue just for the food. They are there to celebrate and to feel great. So, not realizing this difference can ruin your guests’ experience.
Fine dining is more formal as there is strict attention to every detail, starting from the restaurant’s theme. On the other hand, casual dining is informal and more open for relaxed eating.
Now that we know the definition let’s see how you should behave as a fine dining restaurant owner.
The steps of service fine dining start when your staff assists the customer. Exceptional restaurant customer service is fundamental to fulfilling your customer’s expectations. So train your staff to keep the right attitude. It is necessary to heartfully greet the customer in a tone that shows your staff’s professionalism.
Always ask the type of table they would like to reserve and book them the spot they expect.
For instance, how many people do they have, and would they like a corner table or a more open spot? Casual restaurants don’t go into such details, and guests have to take the first available tables.
Moreover, always ask for special orders in advance, such as drinks and cakes or anything they would like on arrival.
However, there is huge talk about customers not showing up after online reservations. You can reduce the chances of absentees by sending reminders and asking customers to confirm their arrival. As you can imagine, casual dining cuts this effort by more than half.
Steps of Service Fine Dining: How To Set the Table for Guests?
As you have read above, the steps of service fine dining are critical. In these settings, you go beyond just tasty food. Your restaurant’s server station must have all the essential items and knowledge for exclusive customer service.
- Table covers: A good setup begins with the perfect base, so let’s start with table covers. Your tablecloth must be large enough to cover all sides of the table evenly. Also, clean and iron it before each party arrives for an expensive look.
- Placing the dishes: Cutlery etiquette is next in the fine dining steps of service. Place the serving plate in the center of the setting and the bread plate on its top left side. Also, you can place the soup bowl on the top of the serving plate.
- Placing the utensils: Now place the forks on the left side of the plate and knives and spoons on the right side. The soup spoon comes at the far right, while the dessert fork and spoon come horizontally above the plates. Also, set the dessert fork at the top of the dessert spoon.
- Placing the glassware: Arrange the glassware above the knives and keep it close to the plates.
- Placing napkins and centerpiece: Fold the napkins neatly and put them on the plate. Also, keep a minimal centerpiece in the center of the table. It may feel too much of a detail, but it is the essence of fine dining.
Steps of Service Fine Dining: Simple Tips To Stand Out
Behavior and manners are building blocks of professionalism, especially in steps of service fine dining. Correctly approaching the guest speaks volumes about your restaurant’s service.
To begin the tips, never reach across the guest to serve the table. Always operate from the guest’s left side to avoid interruption as the guest eats with the right hand.
However, if you notice someone eating with their left hand, flip this rule and serve from the opposite side.
Using technology to take orders is a helpful way to deliver the right course. There are multiple POS systems for restaurants that you can use for additional convenience.
Moreover, remember to hold the glass from the stem while serving water and drinks. Also, hold the plate from the corners to avoid fingerprints.
The best practice is waiting for one course to complete to serve the next.
However, in multiple guest gatherings, serve all the guests at the same time.
When serving, highlight the primary ingredients of the dish, such as why this dish is a specialty. In this way, you will successfully achieve the steps of service in a fine dining restaurant.
6 Steps to a Royal Experience: How To Serve in a Fine Dining Restaurant?
After understanding the basics of the table settings, let’s learn how to serve in a fine dining restaurant.
Paying more always comes with expecting more, especially in fine dining. Therefore, you need to give your guests an unforgettable experience. No step can go wrong here.
The steps of service fine dining work best when your guest leaves satisfied and feeling like royalty. If you are still feeling overwhelmed by the delicate details of fine dining, the following steps will help.
First Step of Service in Fine Dining: Receive, Greet, and Take Them to Their Seat
Your first interaction with the guest will set the tone for the rest of the dining. Therefore, greeting is the most influential step of service in fine dining.
First, a dining server must attend to the guests with a warm smile and professional gestures. Educate your staff to hold a confident outlook while attending the guest.
Greeting with “Good evening, ma’am, or sir” is a common practice. Then, ask them about their day, but don’t get too clingy. Read the signs, whether the guest is interacting warmly or formally, and proceed accordingly.
Moreover, ask if they have a reservation. Remember, you can use online reservation tools such as OpenTable to make the process more convenient.
Once you confirm the reservation, guide them to their table. After reaching the right spot, pull the chairs for the guests, first for the females.
Proceed to open the menu to them and explain it. This isn’t about dictating the dishes but rather explaining the setting of each dish and what they can expect.
Tell them about the day’s specials and drinks, and answer the questions swiftly. To make suggestions, you’ll need a thorough knowledge of the menu.
Second Step of Service in Fine Dining: Take Orders in the Correct Order
Good listening and navigating practice is important for taking orders in steps of service in fine dining. After you have explained the menu to the guest, wait for a moment and let them decide. Answer any question they are asking about the ingredients or a particular dish.
However, be patient and don’t interrupt the guest. Once they have decided what they want, proceed to write. Here, you can use handheld POS or tablets. If you are using technology, make sure you are familiar with the process of using it to avoid any confusion.
Furthermore, always repeat what the guest is ordering, as it reduces the chance of mistakes. First, take the drink order and fill one sip to let the guest taste it. After the guest asks, fill the glass and clean it of any drop or splash.
After that, take an order of appetizers and then the main course. Asking for food allergies or any dietary restrictions shows the server’s professionalism.
After the guests have finished the main course, clean the dishes and take the dessert orders. Again, use the same politeness and professionalism you showed when taking the drink and main course orders.
Third Step of Service in Fine Dining: Check Back To See What They Lack
The third step of service in fine dining is checking back on the guests. Be attentive and keep coming back regularly to check if they need anything.
Properly time your appearances. Don’t come too frequently, as it can irritate the guests. However, if they call, make sure to get there on time.
Follow the minute rule here and get back to the customer within a minute after any request. Moreover, keep removing the used dishes and place new ones after every course.
In case of mishaps, such as the guest not liking the dish, try to resolve the issue confidently. If the guest asks for a replacement, do it with a sincere apology.
Sometimes, guests get angry without any reason. If anything like this happens, address it while keeping your composure. Involving the restaurant manager in the worst scenario will maintain the restaurant’s decorum.
Fourth Step of Service in Fine Dining: Present the Cheque With the Right Tech
After the dining, proceed to the fourth step of service in fine dining: presenting the bill. Wait a few minutes after the guests have finished the meal and remove the dishes. This slight wait may seem unimportant, but it is everything about fine dining.
Present the bill after a while, or if the guest asks, present it immediately. Make sure to have a respectful and attentive reach while giving the invoice.
Offer the check holder with both hands to show respect. Do not rush the payment and wait for the guest to call you. Moreover, assist guests if they have any concerns regarding the cost and respectfully answer their questions.
Furthermore, talk about payment options such as cash, credit card, or tableside POS system. QR code payments are also convenient as guests can scan the code by smartphone. Lastly, place the cash holder or tablet in front of the guest so they can see it.
Fifth Step of Service in Fine Dining: Thank Before Collecting Their Feedback
After collecting the payment, thank the guests for dining in your restaurant. Again, this will show your professional attitude and dedication and encourage the guest to return for another visit.
Now, you can ask for feedback on your customer’s experience. Address your guests by asking, “How was your dining experience in our restaurant?”
If they seem willing to share their thoughts, ask them to visit your website and follow you on social media. When they do that after a positive experience, they are also more likely to leave a positive online review. Tell them that their feedback will help to improve the services.
Additionally, you can ask if they have any questions. Remember, review is not just a statement; it is a vital step of service in fine dining. Feedback or reviews build a good reputation and help upgrade customer services.
Moreover, you can use technology to get feedback. You can provide a QR code linked to your online survey and use the POS system for collecting feedback.
Additionally, using a WiFi marketing solution can also help with getting reviews. Not only that, it can help you build an email list for personalized promotions.
Lastly, give them a comment card for dining in your restaurant and cooperating for feedback. You can follow QRcode marketing best practices and embed a link to your page on local review sites.
Sixth Step of Service in Fine Dining: Clean and Revive Before the Next Arrive
The last step of service in fine dining is cleaning the table. It may seem something casual, but it requires proper handling.
Start by cleaning the table after the guests have left or are about to leave. Remove the dishes and other cutlery without making noise. Keep a low voice and clean the table swiftly without disturbing the other diners.
However, you are cleaning the table and preparing it for the next guests. Therefore, clean it in a manner that leaves no residue from the previous dining. Moreover, do not place the tray on the table and remove the cutlery from the left side.
Try not to drop anything, and also check the covers for stains. If you find any stains, wipe and sanitize the table. Lastly, clean the tableside floor to ensure no leftover food or dirt anywhere near it.
Show Your Efforts to the World and Fill Your Fine Dining Restaurant With Guests
By now, the steps of service fine dining must be clear to you. From the start, when the guests arrive, to the end, when they leave, give attention to every detail.
Do not lose your confidence even if you are struggling at any point. Make sure to follow the definite rules of dining, such as greetings, gestures, cutlery placement, and serving.
Always incorporate the use of technology in service, feedback, and marketing. Show the world your offerings with the correct marketing on every available platform.
Remember, one satisfied guest is a promotion that goes a long way and brings more guests.
If you want to automate your marketing activities and grow your online reputation, check out Beambox. This WiFi marketing platform will help you achieve your restaurant’s goals and increase revenue. Start your free trial today!
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