Sunday, 22 January 2017

Internship Week 3: Food and Beverage

What a fun week this has been! As I mentioned before, this week we switched things up a bit and I was required to work Front of the House (Food and Beverage) department. My positions included bartender, hostess and server. Our facilitator this week was Mr. Ashmeed Abass. He stressed on the importance of service to a dining experience and taught us several very little gestures which can make a big difference. Ensuring that the guests were happy and well taken care of were the top priorities for him, as he reiterated to us that his teaching style and service style is more new school but still very professional. However, he allowed us the liberty of not only learning through experience but for us to teach one another. Peer teaching is a great way to learn as it is comfortable and you may feel as though they are more on your level. Some of our co-workers this week included some Food and Beverage students who taught us a lot along with our facilitator. Table settings, identifying cutlery, napkin folding, replacing tablecloths and doing lots and lots of dishes were among some of the things we learned and did. Bartending was an important part of our duties; unfortunately, we did not have many customers and especially not many who ordered cocktails and mocktails.

Being able to see the restaurant operations from the other side was enlightening and exciting. Working and communicating with the kitchen is important to be able to properly serve guests and ensure a problem free dining experience. It was interesting to see in what ways the kitchen can improve its service to the front staff and vice versa. On one of the days, there was a miscommunication between front and back staff with the menu which caused some problems with guests ordering and receiving different items. However, the problem was eventually rectified but could have been easily avoided with proper communication. The pace of the front of the house is a bit slower than in the kitchen and a bit more laid back. However, it is very important to maintain professionalism when the guests arrive. Interacting with guests and being able to see them enjoy the dining experience was definitely one of the best parts of the week. For me, when I dine out, and for many other guests, regardless of the quality of food, service can make or break a restaurant. With this knowledge and being able to see it firsthand, it became even more important to us to provide exceptional service to our guests, regardless of who they were. I say this because many of our guests are usually school staff or students but it was important to treat every single one of them with utmost respect and professionalism. I can see myself working in this department if necessary in the future and it was definitely a very good experience, but I'm excited for my last week in the kitchen for our dinner shift that's coming.

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