60 seconds to taste the wine

I read this in a book and I wanted to share it with you!

The 60-Second Wine Expert

Over the last few years I have insisted that my students spend one minute in silence after they swallow the wine. I use a “60-second wine expert” tasting sheet in my classes for students to record their impressions. The minute is divided into four sections: 0 to 15 seconds, 15 to 30 seconds, 30 to 45 seconds, and the final 45 to 60 seconds. Try this with your next glass of wine.Please note that the first taste of wine is a shock to your taste buds. This is due to the alcohol content and acidity of wine. The higher the alcohol or acidity, the more of a shock. For the first wine in any tasting, it is probably best to take a sip and swirl it around in your mouth, but dont evaluate it. Wait another thirty seconds, try it again and then begin the sixty-second wine expert

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I love my guests

Looking for a job? Time for an application letter!

Dear Sir,

I love my guests. I love white guests, black guests, yellow guests and even green guest although I’ve never seen them in the thirty years of hospitality. I love young guests, old guests and middle-aged guests. I love Dutch guests, Italian guests, Greek guests and all guests from the other 24 countries of the European Union, with a debt or not. I love guests who drink coffee (I know a lot about it), who drink tea and even drink jugs of water. Although I can’t stand drunk guests, I love them because I know that when they wake up, they will be as normal as we. I love guests with brown eyes, blue eyes and green eyes. All other color-eyed guests are welcome too. Nevertheless it’s good to mention that everybody not fit in one of these groups will be loved also by me, as long as they treat me as they want to be treated by me. Even if they don’t I love them.

When will your guests be my guests?

Yours sincerely,


Higly inspired by Letters of Note: I like words.

How to respond to reviews

I like review sites because it’s a mirror of your own work. Also it’s a great source of finding new restaurants and places which I use a lot. Especially when the company answers because it shows that they care (a bit more) of their guests. My favorite answers are from Hotel Villa Schuler in the beautiful Taormina (Sicily, Italy) at Tripadvisor, especially this one should be in all hotelschool textbooks. I used their answers as inspiration for this article. There are also some answers from EasyHotel Amsterdam.

Now you can also use my Review Response Generator 🙂

Some tips on how to respond. (–>)

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[NL] Knallen in de horeca

There are a lot of television programs about the kitchen (for instance Gordon Ramsey), but finally there’s a program about the waiters and the service side of our job. In this program the employees are trained by Willem Reimers, a man who has a lot of experience in the business.

I really like the fact that there is serious attention for our job. The program is well done. It’s hilarious to see the behaviour at the beginning, filmed with candid cameras. A waiter gave his phonenumber, and another waitress even gossiped about other guests to guests. Of course everything is improved at the end, I hope they can continue this.

I did not see shocking new things for me personally from the training given in the program, but it emphasizes the fact that the management should really give more attention to taste the products we sell. I also realized that being the responsible person on the floor not means that you have to be tight and criticize the others all the time, but above all have to coach them on the path to excellence.

The program is really well done, and I hope this program has a lot of viewers. Not only waiters but also the guest, so they’ll appreciate our job even more! After this when everybody knows how to do it well, a program MasterWaiter (inspired by Masterchef) to show who is the best waiter of the country?

See it yourself at the site of Knallen in de Horeca. (To see the program, click ‘gemist’. Unfortunately it’s in dutch and not subtitled.)

The elements of Service Quality (1)

We’re delivering quality. But what is it? In very short it is the difference between expectation and that what you get. If you get more than expected, the quality is high, and vice versa.

If you ask people about quality you’ll get a lot of words. If you put all the terms which come up  in a box and sort them in groups, you’ll find five groups. Clever people (scientists) speak about dimensions. They are easy to remember with the word RATER

Reliability (26%) Reliability is the ability to perform the promised service dependably and accurately. Do we deliver what we promise?
Tangibles (10.8%) Tangibles are the physical facilities, equipment, and appearance of personnel.
Assurance (32.3%) Assurance is guaranteeing the process of performing services
Empathy (10.1%)  The care and personalized service given
Responsiveness (20.8%); With regard to the dimension of responsiveness, the quick problem-solving ability of the service personnel is a good opportunity to impress the consumer

To be noted is that the percentages are valid for hot spring hotels. But my feeling says its the same for restaurants and other businesses. A lot of managers think that the Tanglibles are very important, but they really should take care of the capability of the employees on assurance, reliability and responsiveness.
The term RATER comes from (Parasuraman et al., 1988). The weights of every dimension are from Hsie, 2007

Michel Teló – Ai Se Eu Te Pego

Tonight I saw this song of Michel Telo in the iTunes top 10 of the Netherlands. Very strange because we don’t listen that much to music other than English or Dutch. But it’s a very funny song with a little dance -even performed by soccer players), so a perfect CrazyWaiter-song! And the clip (eg. the public) isn’t a big task to watch at 1080px and fullscreen 🙂 (another performance can be found here). Translation after the clip.

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CrazyWaiters Drinks Calculator

This weekend the CrazyWaiter spent his time spending assisting a friend who threw a party. Of course I concentrated myself on the food and beverage with serving his guests and friends. When J. asked some weeks ago for help to plan how many drinks he should buy for his party, I made a calculator. I’m happy to share it with you. You enter the values in the yellow and the blue cells, and the list to buy will be visible in the pink cells.

As always with calculatingmodels, the quality of the output depends strongly on the input. If you enter 40 guests during 6 hours, don’t be surprised that you can bring back 75% of the stock to the shop when there are only 25 guests during 3 hours. Luckily we could get the money back, but what a pity that we had to spent this money on a parking fine – never felt so stupid 🙁 BTW, when I entered the right data, the shopping list was very close to what the people had consumed in reality :proud:

The party was nice, but it is over now, so here it is…

CrazyWaiters Drinks Calculator

(Disclaimer: use it  wisely and at own risk. CrazyWaiter is not responsible etc. etc. etc.)

How to get more tips… use makeup!

We knew it already but now it’s researched another time: waitresses with makeup have more tip than those without makeup.

In this study the effect of cosmetics on tipping behavior and the link between behavior and judgment on the physical attractiveness of waitresses wearing or not wearing cosmetics were tested. A female waitress with or without makeup was instructed to act in her usual way with her patrons. Results showed that the makeup condition was associated with a significant increase in the tipping behavior of male customers. It was also found that the effect of makeup on tipping behavior was mediated by the perception of the physical attractiveness of the waitress, but only when considering male customers.

Read it here
(NB In the earlier research there’s a difference in the number of women who tip (or don’t) for a waitress with makeup vs no makeup. The CrazyWaiter doesn’t have a explanation for that, he emailed the author already for that. Until then: wear make up and give the bill to the men on the table :))

What is a customer (or guest)

A very nice quote to put on the wall somewhere in your backstage. And yes, ofcourse you’ll change the word customer in guest !

A customer is the most important visitor on our premises.
He is not dependent on us. We are dependent on him.
He is not an interruption of our work. He is the purpose of it.
He is not an outsider of our business. He is part of it.
We are not doing him a favour by serving him.
He is doing us a favour by giving us the opportunity to do so

Mahatma Ghandi (in a speech in South Africa in 1890)


Today I was in Paris for the last time. I have lived near it for more than five years. A film about this city is Ratatouille ! Je l’aime !

In the hilarious new animated-adventure, RATATOUILLE, a rat named Remy dreams of becoming a great chef despite his family’s wishes and the obvious problem of being a rat in a decidedly rodent-phobic profession. When fate places Remy in the city of Paris, he finds himself ideally situated beneath a restaurant made famous by his culinary hero, Auguste Gusteau. Despite the apparent dangers of being an unwanted visitor in the kitchen at one of Paris’ most exclusive restaurants, Remy forms an unlikely partnership with Linguini, the garbage boy, who inadvertently discovers Remy’s amazing talents. They strike a deal, ultimately setting into motion a hilarious and exciting chain of extraordinary events that turns the culinary world of Paris upside down.

Remy finds himself torn between following his dreams or returning forever to his previous existence as a rat. He learns the truth about friendship, family and having no choice but to be who he really is, a rat who wants to be a chef.

via Ratatouille Trailer – YouTube.

Behind the bash

Your CrazyWaiter has a lot of foodsteps in the partycatering. It’s cool, you start with nothing (an empty building or garage), you build up a restaurant or partycenter, you do the party, you break down and you end with nothing. Especially when it’s on location it’s about 25% service, 25% kitchen and 50% organisation.

Behind the Bash is a show hosted by Giada De Laurentiis (@gdelaurentiis) that aired on Food Network.

The show focuses on what it takes to create the (quoted from Food Network’s website)”over-the-top, high-rolling parties from glitzy Las Vegas to New York City.” In these fragments they are following the catering for the afterparty of the Grammy awards. Giada is invited behind the scenes of a Grammy after party that was several months in the making. In four days, 6,000 guests are set to arrive at the L.A. Convention Center. Things have to be unforgettably elegant and over-the-top gourmet. After the jump also an episode detailing the grand opening gala for the new theatrical production, Phantom — The Las Vegas Spectacular, which opened at The Venetian.

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