A case against tipping: The US is one of the only countries where tips are essential for restaurant workers to earn a fair wage. Eater analyzed recent data around tipping, concluding that in many cases, it’s time for the current system to go. The article demonstrates how racism, sexism, harassment, and worker exploitation can be linked to tipping. [Eater]
Alberta lifts BC boycott: Earlier this month, the Canadian province of Alberta instituted a boycott on importing wines from British Columbia due to a disagreement over the construction of an oil pipeline from Alberta to BC’s coast, supported by Alberta but opposed by many in BC. Yesterday, Alberta announced it would lift the brief boycott. [The Drinks Business]
Archie McLaren dies: Archie McLaren, a champion of Central Coast wine, has died at 75. A lawyer by trade, he founded the Central Coast Wine Classic, an annual fundraiser for radio station KCBX, that brought much-needed attention to Santa Barbara and Paso Robles in the mid-1970s. He also hosted TV and radio shows and was beloved for his charisma and eloquence. [Wine Spectator]
More Douro table wines: The Symington Family Estates group, known for its Port production, is building a dedicated winery for its growing portfolio of Douro DOC table wines. The winery will be built in the Vilafrica Valley, located in the northeast of the region. The aim is to produce high-end red and white Douro DOC wines. [Decanter]
Praising lighter vintages: Concentrated, tannic wines continue to receive higher scores than lighter wines. Yet wines with high tannins but minimal fruit don’t often age well. It’s true, says Jancis Robinson, that tannic wines may age wonderfully, but softer wines can age well, too—and they are also delicious while young. [JancisRobinson.com]
Fine wine pricing: Forbes takes a look at the factors that contribute to the price of a high-end wine. Labor, expertise, barrels, and packaging are just a few. Producers today often grapple with how to reduce packaging while maintaining the style associated with fine wines, especially if they hope to source materials from North America. [Forbes]
Our favorite SevenFifty Daily article this week
What’s ahead for Oregon wine: The 2018 Oregon Wine Symposium this week considered the future of the state’s wine production. Oregon currently has the fastest-growing wine industry of any state. One significant trend is the proliferation of sub-AVAs and nested AVAs. While this continues, other advocates hope to preserve the reputation of the Willamette Valley. [SevenFifty Daily]
What do you think?
What do you think of the research presented by Eater? Which factors have you observed? What’s happening with tipping in your market?
What are your thoughts on Jancis Robinson’s observations about aging tannic versus lighter wines?
What else goes into the price of fine wine?
Especially if you’re in Oregon, what do you see ahead for the state? What key trends do you observe?
What else have you been reading this week?
I work at a resort on Maui. If you took away my tips, I’d leave the restaurant. For the record, our kitchen employees make upwards of $20 an hour. The lowest paid employees are our hard working bus staff. We acknowledge them by giving them more than the required %. I parlay my wine credentials into better tips. Don’t take away our reward for trying harder to improve at what we do!
I am undecided on this issue and have gone back and forth for some time now. I cannot disagree with either side yet, but I will say that if a server was paid an hourly wage it would be harder to get good servers or people who would want to serve. Some servers would need to be paid $50 an hour or more to be able to compensate what they would have made in tips. I admittedly didn't read the entire article, so I am not sure if it was mentioned or not, but would restaurants be willing or even able to do that? What is a fair hourly wage for a server? How much would service slip? I made more waiting tables than I did as a TEACHER; Which is another topic completely.
The other side of this coin is I am for a team mindset, but in the world of service I might be contradictory in my beliefs. If I consistently had much higher ticket averages than any other server, what would be the benefit behind it for me? I feel like it would cause people to not care as much, or cause service to go down overall. Is there a way to compensate this? These are all of the things I think of when it comes to this issue, but still haven't been able to fully decide what side I agree with.
The numbers on racism, sexism, etc are alarming. I cannot speak from experience in this issue as the few establishments I worked at didn't have this issue with server to patron relations. I do feel bad for those that have been treated unfairly though. Final question, would doing away with tipping fix this? Or would the people who feel that way just find another reason to justify their feelings?
We should keep in mind that tips will vary between venues, and I've heard ranges from $1000-$2000/month. Cutting tips at the lower end may not change things much, but at the higher end people will definitely think twice.
Keith Spreckels Jr. said:The other side of this coin is I am for a team mindset, but in the world of service I might be contradictory in my beliefs. If I consistently had much higher ticket averages than any other server, what would be the benefit behind it for me?
I can only speak for myself, but where I work they implement a point-scale when distributing tips to FOH staff. No tips for the first 2 weeks, then everyone starts at 5 points. Full tips is 10 points. Raising your points is a combination of seniority, experience, standard of service, at least that is what they say, but there's little openness about it... everyone has a story about how that lazy idiot who gets the same level of tips as the harder-working, more switched-on staff.
Our best servers clear 6 figures and even the average ones clear in the upper 5 figures.
At higher end places, you can clear 6 figures relatively easy.