Toronto Servers, this is for you!

Servers, we've been hearing from you! Please don't stop now. Keep it coming.
Tell us about what is going on in your world. Anonymous tips are welcomed.

What restaurants are awesome to work in and why?

Tell us about the restaurants that suck, and tell us why.

We need names of restaurants and info on that restaurant's policies.

Who is tipping what - where?

Are you required to tip out the management? If so, how much?

What type of environment do you work in?

How does the management treat you?

Do you have to buy a uniform? How much does it cost?

Please respectfully explain the issues, avoiding personal attacks and name calling. Don't make comments that are threatening, obscene, profane, contain hate speech or degrade others. We all appreciate the info, let's be professional about it.

We're doing great guys!

  We have 33 companies, and 42 establishments reviewed so far.  

We'll reorder your comments into posts as info comes in. Or, if the place you work is already listed to the right, feel free to comment on its individual post. The more the merrier.

A great Anonymous Tip for servers came in from a GM who has worked in the industry for 15 years... "My advice to the servers is to ask for a tax receipt from the ownership of your restaurant. If they were planning on paying tax on the tipout, they will not mind at all and then you can claim it on your income tax if you dare! This may make the boss nervous as in a place that sells $1,000,000.00 per year will collect anywhere between $50,000 to $150,000 to the house...the employees just paid the rent!"

Thanks for taking the time to talk about your experiences! We've heard over and over how helpful this blog has been!


  1. "Fab Concepts" is the company behind many successful pubs in Toronto such as Murphy's Law, Foggy Dew, Pour House, Ned Devine's, Pogue Mahone Irish Pub, Mill Street BrewPub, Dub Linn Gate, Brazen Head and Watermark.
    Before the recent easter long weekend preventing us from seeking legal or employment advice Fab concepts pubs were all given this notice:

    Effective Monday April 5th the current Tip out policy will be modified. The Bar Staff will now be tipping out 2.5% and Serving Staff 4.0%. this will go to the Kitchen Staff, Food Runners, Bussers, Door Staff and to your restaurant. The calculation will be based on total sales.
    The Tip out to the Kitchen Staff will go to help reward the men and women who continue to work tirelessly in our Kitchens to deliver great Quality Food.
    The 0.5% Tip out that goes to your individual Restaurants will be used to off-set the costs for things like increasing credit card commissions and general increasing costs.
    We feel this change is in everybody’s best interest and anticipate your full enthusiastic support of this decision. Further details of the process of this change will be reviewed by all your Pub managers. Thank-you for your continued efforts and we look forward to a busy Summer Season.


    Broken Down, these are the amounts of our *TOTAL SALES* (regardless of what tips we make) that we are asked to pay out:
    Bar: 2.5%; 1% Kitchen Staff, 1% Food Runners/Door Staff, 0.5% to the restaurant
    Severs: 4%; 1% Kitchen Staff, 1% Food runners/Door Staff, 1.5% Bar, 0.5% to the restaurant.

    The tip out policy for servers as it stood was very fair and went like this:
    1% to the busser
    1% to the hostess
    1.5% to the bar

    The hostess and busser were only tipped out on the total sales they were on shift for. Now to compensate for the fact they now only get 1% split between them, servers have been made to tip out on our total sales at the end of the night even for the hours they aren't even there to help.

    There is so much more wrong with this system, but bottom line is stay away from these pubs. Servers can do much better.

    This is the worst place I have ever worked in my many years in the industry.
    It's location in Yorkville draws in quite a crowd. The guests are rude and impatient. This is not made easier by the lack of respect the manager and owner treat their staff with. The general manager is a complete prick. He will walk all over you and then cry that no one in the place likes him. He has low self-confidence and gets off by harassing the shit out of anyone and everyone who crosses his path. The owner is just an old man past his time who wont retire and loves to spend the days pretending like he is doing something important, but he is just in the way. He will degrade you and make you feel stupid if you serve him. These people do not realize the type of establishment they are trying to run needs a lot more to function properly. The kitchen is unorganized, food is always too slow and half the time it gets sent back. Granted, these are guests in Yorkville who will do anything to be a pain in the ass. The server areas are completely unfunctional. The restaurant is huge and service is slowed down by the fact that you are running from one end to the other because they give you no room to work. Final note- I wouldn't recommend eating or drinking off of the dinner ware. I have seen how it is cleaned and a machine in the back where the water is never changed and the dishwasher has to rub everything down and scrape shit off the plates AFTER it comes out of the washer and used again is never a pretty sight. One thing I did learn however, its OKAY to clean the silverware with vinegar after one go through the machine and the dishwasher is too busy to redue them.
    This place is gross. The manager and owner are pieces of shit. The restaurant will never function properly due to its lack of organization and owners who do not give a shit about their employees.

  3. I think this is a great idea. I have been in the business over 15 years as a GM in the casual dining segment. I think that while servers take home a lot of unclaimed income, owners in ANY industry should not be taxing their employees to work there.

    I have been lucky in the fact that I currently do not work for an owner that collects a house tip...it is a way better work atmosphere for us all!

    My advice to the servers is to ask for a tax receipt from the ownership of your restaurant. If they were planning on paying tax on the tipout, they will not mind at all and then you can claim it on your income tax if you dare! This may make the boss nervous as in a place that sells $1,000,000.00 per year will collect anywhere between $50,000 to $150,000 to the house...the employees just paid the rent!

    FTP!(for the people)

  4. Verdi Trattoria on Bayview in T.O. Essy demands a 2%tip-out to the house. For that I get no deal on food, no support staff and am expected to pay from my own pocket if I make a mistake or have a walk-out. After all that I am forced to wait for my pay and my tips! What a guy!

  5. Please respectfully explain the issues, avoiding personal attacks and name calling.

    Do not make comments that are threatening, obscene, profane, contain hate speech or degrade others. We all appreciate the info, lets be professional about it.

  6. Fine dining establishment north of the city: 7% of net sales + 3% of credit card tips and a $5 per shift polishing charge (about 8% once you factor everything in). This goes to the "support staff" even though they are nowhere to be found. They arrive after the server and leave before the server. Question: Why does the server pay 3% of credit card tip if they wind up tipping out 1/2 of it?? Why not 3% of what they actually make??
    Most large places are around 5%. The trend has become for the house to divide the tip-out, which has resulted in lazy support staff and in turn less than adequate service. What happended to the motivation for support staff? They receive a % regardless of how good a job they do!!

  7. I worked for Bocca on Baldwin.
    They wanted a 4% tip out, ALL of which went to the house. When I was hired I was told that this money went to the "Manager" (the owners' son), for his help with bussing and seating, food running, etc. However, I soon discovered that most of my shifts were to be worked on my own, with no support staff at all. Nonetheless, tip out was mandatory.
    I had a real problem with the management, and needless to say, my employment did not last for long. I have no issue in tipping out support staff who a) exist, and b) are supportive, but I do not agree with server tips supplementing management salaries or house costs.
    None of this is in any way in violation of labour code. I checked.
    I would not recommend this employer.

    I have worked in the past for restaurants that required tip out to bussers, hosts, and service bartenders and support that practice wholeheartedly. People who are in their "apprenticeship" deserve a share of the supplementary income servers and bartenders enjoy. Anywhere between 3%-5% seems reasonable for most places, and upwards of that if the venue is of a higher caliber with more support staff.

    In my opinion, only the practice of the house taking a cut is repugnant and needs to be addressed.

  8. Frida Restaurant on Eglinton West. 3% of sales to the house. No pretense of giving percentages to the kitchen staff which richly deserve it, the place is struggling and has turned to milking it's servers to account for it. The management really has a tough time here, I suppose, but they do shoot themselves in the foot. A common complaint is labour costs, but they often have two or three on for a night when six people come in to dine. They go for a 'family atmosphere' with the staff, and so long as 'dysfunctional' is put in front, it succeeds. Tips are given via bi-monthly checque; it's very rare to walk out with cash...which isn't so bad, really, just a bit different. Servers tip 2.5% to the bar on nights when there's a dedicated bartender (I don't think there is anymore-barely needed support staff) and no effort has been made to make the bar a decent place to sit; it's far too high for a guest's comfort. Management thinks they have a good 'system' in place when in fact the chef (who is part owner) is overly controlling over front of house when he's never had to work it. He wants to cut every possible cost but readily gives away free meals for the slightest complaint or praise. His prerogative, certainly, but one hand washes the other. Perhaps even more egregious is the front of house manager, who questions every tiny thing that goes on but lets the big things slide; servers get in more trouble for letting chips slide on the floor off the plate than for showing up half an hour late two weeks in a row. Yelling matches are common.

    It really is a shame, the place has excellent food and a great concept and atmosphere for customers, but the staff side needs a lot of work.

  9. Coco Lazzone, The owner demands a tip pool from servers and distributes the money two weeks later. He routinely fires staff at their 3 month probation and keeps grats owed. I can't tell you how many times in my 3 months there irate previous employees came demanding money owed to them. I was horrified and surprised when he took over 500 from me. And even more horrified to learn that I had no right to that money. Servers are completely unprotected. I feel that more times than not, the "Tip pool" is a convenient way for owners to skim off the top. You never see the cash out, or the sales and even when your grats and sales are good, you are left suspicious that your co-workers aren't pulling their weight because your tip outs always suck. Other places I have worked that utilize similar systems (Amaya's bread bar, Susur Lee Tapas bar) Thanks for starting this forum. Any word on Pure Spirits in the Distillery?

  10. I use to work for Watermark Irish Pub (Fab concepts). The company is horrible to work for, they treat their staff like garbage.

    Tip out 4% of total sales
    are expected to pay for dine and dash.
    Kitchen is too small for size of restaurant, food takes an hour or more to come out some days.
    Management goes against staff if you "cut off" a drunk patron
    They punish you with the schedule.
    In the summer you can expect to be stuck there until 3 or 4 am cleaning.
    Then back for 10 or 11am shifts.
    They'll expect you to work 15 hour days.

    They took away our christmas party and gave us this letter saying they donated $5000 to the daily food bank.


  11. FYI: Just so everyone knows, after FAB concepts cancelled the Christmas party, they still managed to take all the General Managers to VEGAS. That's right, LAS VEGAS.

    1. I'll boycott every fab concepts restaurant upon hearing this. Servers need to unionize!

  12. also here at FAB concepts a female can expect to pay over $200 for her work uniform.

    1 kilt $85
    1 T-shirts $25
    1 Zip-up jacket $35
    1 pair of knee socks $10

    full time staff are required to buy a minimum of two pieces per each item..

  13. Regarding Fab Concepts Christmas party letter, I have the actual letter here:

    Subject - Christmas party:

    Dear Staff

    After great debate the Management Team of FAB Concepts have reached an extreamly difficult decision. In light of the current enconomic situation, we believe it is best to forego the Christmas Party this year. Instead, we would like to give back to our community and we have donated $5000.00 to the Daily Bread Food Bank for their holiday food drive.

    At a time when more and more people are in need, the slumping economy means less people are able to give. We hope we are right in our feeling that the employees of FAB Concepts would want to extend help to those who may otherwise not experience the festivity and warmth of Christmas.



    FYI... There's no public record of them ever donating money

  14. I worked for a FAB pub last year.

    Here's the worst story I ever witnessed.

    A party came into the restaurant, already drunk, and carrying open cans of beer.

    When you enter a bar with an open beer, you get told to leave. Period. No no no. The server had to take their beers from them himself while they cursed and swore at him. He repeatedly went to his manager, his GM and even the area manager was there. They told him he had to keep serving them. This is the only company I have ever heard of that doesn't side with the staff on this issue. Especially when the service staff quite often have more restaurant experience than the management themselves. This goes on throughout their stay, drunk guys grabbing at waitresses, mouthing off, etc... At one point a stumbling man eating saucy wings wipes his hands on the server's shirt right in front of the GM and manager. They did nothing. The climax of this is when one of their own party members actually punches the hand wiper in the face. And STILL they didn't ask anyone to leave. I'll never forget the look on the server's face when that bastard wiped his hands on him. I don't know how he took it without losing it. Anytime a server would cut a customer off all the customer would have to do, no matter what kind of shape they are in is bitch at the manager and they would let them stay. This is all because of the dreaded EMAIL! Everyone in this place; server, bartender, and especially MANAGERS' jobs are as expendable as an email. So rather than stand up for your staff, your pub, and your damned self at the risk of some asshole going home and writing an email to the head office, you walk away, go in the office, and leave the service staff to deal with it.

    Management have it worse than the floor staff in this company. They get hired and put in these positions but are too scared to act for fear of foolish, drunk, sexual harassing upper management.

    Why hire these people as management and not give them the trust and respect to do their jobs? The management are a depressed bunch, just trying to get ahead like the rest of us. And THEY don't even get tips.

    Needless to say I no longer work for the company. Took a job for a privately run restaurant on king in the theatre district. I might not make as much money, but nothing is worth what they deal with.

    oh yeah. as far as I know the server that happened too still works there.

  15. I work at the pub, and was there the night that it happened. not only did the server want to cut them off, but so did the bartenders and support staff. we were all told to keep serving them.

    In this establishment the floor managers do not support the staff because they are not supported by the director of operations.
    numerous times the d.o.o. has gone over the g.m.'s head. there was one occasion where someone refused to pay their bill and as a result the police were called in, days later the d.o.o. called him in for a meeting and gave him gift certificates to come back. staff at this pub have caught the d.o.o. making out with two different staff members.

    fab is a terrible company to work for, they do not support you and you are considered expendable

  16. re verdi on bayview; a place to avoid unless you have hit rock bottom. 2% of sales for owner's mercedes payments, lucky if you get paid on time, still owes me $155 in tips i'll never see and have no legal recourse. Does not pay his staff server minimums.

  17. I work for Joey Don Mills in Toronto.

    While it is a great environment to work and consistently busy, the tip out is a bit much.

    5.25% after tax on total sales and NO bussers.

    Over 1.5% goes to management, not sure exactly how much.

  18. In light of all the Toronto Star article/FAB Concepts restaurants news, if, as a customer, you are displeased with the company's tip out policies, please *make it known* to the company.

    -Ask the manager over and express your concerns.
    -Or ask how to contact the Director of Operations.
    -*Better still*: Email the company via their websites. FAB Concepts takes emails extremely seriously, especially since they always get to the owners and management. Emails get staff fired on a regular basis, whether they are authentic or not.

    If enough customers show their disapproval, things will change. Same deal would apply to other restaurants with similar situations.

    I wouldn't advise boycotting as that would also hurt the hundreds of hard-working employees--the ones we're trying to help with this tip-out debacle.

  19. I'm a GM in a small restaurant in Toronto.

    I'd like to say that it's still a pretty sweat job to be a server in this city.

    an average 10% hourly rate increase each year for the past 5 years, curtisy of our prov gov.
    everytime the menu prices go up the tip amounts go up.

    Name me one job in the world, yes world, that has a built in inflation increase!

    Think about it!

  20. East Side Mario's - Newmarket

    The never gave me my last two pay cheques, yet they sent me a T4 saying they paid me out the full amount.
    They were a big fan of "no starts". Meaning you are scheduled but do not start your shift until it is busy.
    Example, scheduled at 5:30 and have to be there by 5:15 or will be in trouble for being late. You are required to wait 1 hour for it to be busy enough for you to start. After 1 hour you have the choice to leave or keep waiting.
    You do not get paid for that hour and do not get any compensation for coming in - although you were scheduled, there and wanted to work.

    The management does help quite a bit there but if there are any complaints, they aren't happy to help your tables. Often you don't get tipped there and still have to tip out - even if the complaint was wrong food or food took to long (which is not the servers fault).

    Had to buy and provide own work shirts and work pants. They charged for aprons and hot cloths.

    Was a bad experience.

  21. Wow.
    I have to say this is amazing. I have never seen such a passionate discussion about this industry. I really want to take everyone that works/had worked for FAB concepts that has posted here out for drinks and we can bitch and complain and do something about this.
    The funny thing about the above stories is that we as staff are given a 3 drink limit. The reason being that once upon a time a staff member went from FAB pub to FAB pub and got wasted and did something stupid. Or s/he sat at the bar and did something stupid. They were never clear on the reason.
    The fact that patrons are allowed to come into the restaurant with open cans of booze is ridiculous. And yes, okay, maybe it does suck to be a manager for this company, but come on, grow some balls, get a back bone and stand up for your staff. Managers should know better than anyone what it's like to walk in these shoes, but yet it seems that once they become managers, they forget. There's no support.
    And to the girl who got fired from one of these pubs for passing around the original craigslist posting, babe - this is illegal. I hope you know this. I'm sure you're probably glad to be out of there (I'm jealous) but they have no right to do that . This is what we're up against.
    Who needs a drink?

  22. Smokey Joe's Cafe

    Required to buy our own work shirts at $15 a piece.

    We tip out on total sales, regardless if we get tipped or not...
    1% to kitchen
    1% to bar
    1% to busser
    .5% to host
    .5% to supervisor
    At this time we do not tip out the house but it was mentioned. We hope that does not happen.

    We pay $1 per shift for breakage (money goes towards broken dishes and glasses...). Its strange to pay that, offices don't charge workers paper-useage fees.

    We are responsible for covering walk outs - even if we try to stop them.
    If a credit card slip is lost, even though the card was charged already - we have to pay the full amount. The establishment gets double the money...
    We are responsible for spillages and the bar being short or over on liquor.

  23. I don't beleive the average consumer will read through all these comments to create a list of restaurants to boycott.
    Is there a way to create a simple list?

  24. to the GM who works in a small restaurant in Toronto:

    first of all, learn to spell,or use spell check; secondly the annual increases in the minimum wage are nothing to shout about, beginning with mike harris' freeze for nine on the minimum wage servers real after inflation wages fell year after year. as for the one job in the world with built in inflation increases, have you ever heard of unions and cola clauses in labour agreements? this industry is still in the stone age, allowing exploitative assholes to abuse their employees, i'm all in favour of unionizing the entire industry even if it causes many establishments to close down.

  25. Baton Rouge in the Eaton Centre

    where to begin: a 3% tip out that goes to the house-no bussers, and the service bar and hostesses get $2/hour out of the tip out in cash with their paycheques ( for a business grossing almost ten million a year, that's almost 300,000 of unreported income for the owners. broken plates and glassware have to be paid for $10-$40 depending on the item broken.if guests fail to sign credit slips, waiters are required to enter the tip on the POS and then hand over the cash amount to the owners- since the guest wont be disputing the tip they wrote on their slip the owners will collect double the amount that they pocket.

  26. Clearly there is frustration amongst staff members, or former staff members of some establishments.
    Just a reminder to please respectfully explain the issues, avoiding personal attacks and name calling.

    Do not make comments that are threatening, obscene, profane, contain hate speech or degrade others. We all appreciate the info, lets be professional about it.

    I'm going to rearrange all of the info in these comments. I'll give each establishment a separate post and a summarize the details submitted in the next couple of days.

  27. One of the worst companies I have ever worked for is definitley Prime Pubs. The location I worked for had a kitchen that was like a revolving door of chefs. You got to know someone and a week later they were gone. Food constantly being sent back, tipping out 4% to non existent bussers and a manager that just sat in the office on facebook for the majoruty of the shift. And the GM, what a joke. She knew nothing and always had to had things her way. I wouldn't have a problem with this if she knew what she was talking about. The firing of qualified employees so that managers could hire their friends who would show up late for shifts or not even show up at all, what a joke. I could go on and on, but you get the point!

  28. Please continue to post info.

    I've started to clean up and organize comments.
    There will be a place under each establishment's profile to continue conversing and sending in further info.

    Please continue to be respectful! Appreciate it.

  29. Everyone has a right to their own opinion however, as a GM in the industry their is always two sides to every story. I believe that whether you are management or hourly staff that the restaurant industry is demanding. I think that server/bartenders make good cash money and do tip out but that's part of the industry. It's unfortunate that some restaurants due take advantage of the house tip out but not all restaurants do. In my opinion boh works hard for their money with no tip out from servers/bartenders and yet they are the core of the restaurant. So when FOH staff are complaining that they tip out yet for the most part make more money than cooks or management...Maybe they should think twice before complaining!!

  30. on a brighter note... there are restaurants in Toronto that are run/owned by decent human beings who treat their staff with courtesy- Southern Accents on Markham St (Bloor/Bathurst area), the owner has always been very professional and courteous to her staff. Once she "admonished" a server for kneeling down when taking an order from a table, telling the server that most patron look down on servers and the least she should do is make the *******
    look up when giving their orders!!! gotta love that.
    anyway my hats off to Francis the owner of Southern Accents

  31. re: BRAVI on wellington east
    i used to work there and left shortly after watching the owner skim most of the tips. all he does is sit at the bar drinking all night and yell at staff. a thoroughly demoralizing place! made me finally decide to quit the service industry for good, now i work a 9-5 job, unionized and laugh when my co-workers bitch about the management here, boy they have no idea what horrible working conditions exist out there.

  32. So glad to read this information/these discussions online...very thrilled with whoever has organized this site. Good Luck!
    I tried www.thetorontoserver.com but unfortunately no time/energy to organize more....maybe in the future...I am no longer working as a Server and glad at it....I vountarily serve now LOL....Yes Servers make more than Managers when calculated on a per hour basis but where is their job security, guarantee of hours, their benefits???....Way to go with this blog. If this gets too much to keep going - I would suggest maybe trying a facebook group or contacting me for a bit of help. Probably easier to spread the word about it on facebook too. Cheers

  33. I'm personally glad this conversation is happening, despite how small it is in the grand scheme of the Toronto restaurant industry.

    I currently for a F.A.B. pub, and am APPALED at how the company has gone steadily downhill in terms of things like food quality, company policy, and tipout procedure, just to name a few. The (upper) management is horribly irrational and ineffiecient, the food is pre-cooked, bottled, pre-made, and microwaved, and the prices are absurd, company wide.

    However, the company has opened a new pub every year for at least the last 3 years and is making money hand over fist while the individual pubs with hard-working and dedicated staff and floor management scramble to keep things afloat in light of ever-changing and ridiculous policy.

    I'm not suggesting a boycott, walkout, or revolution, but people need to know how the corporate (they hate that term in this case) machine operates. The new tipout policy is just the tip of the iceberg, trust me.

    I personally feel that kitchen staff deserves a tipout in almost any restaurant, but a house tip is insane, unless it goes to cover a walkout fund, which it DOES NOT in this case. And I believe that tipping your support staff brings a team together for better overall service and food quality, which is what keeps people coming back. However, in the case of F.A.B. there seems to be a calculated effort to alienate both long-term staff and regulars (who are the bread and butter of most establishments) with the attitude of 'good riddance, we'll find people who WANT to be here' Good luck, because those who want to be are quickly declining.....

  34. Another FAB ex-emplyoee chiming in here.. I left months ago, I saw the writing on the wall then, I just didn't know how fast the FABship is sinking.

    This corporate-irish bullshit is a joke, they gouge their employees for whatever they can get out of them.

    Do they honestly think by digging away at the people who are the heart and soul of your operation, you will suddenly become more successful or profitable? This company has really lost touch with reality!

    Good luck to you all still wearing your FABulous kilts!

  35. Fab concepts is demanding a house tip out of 0.5% to offset increasing costs????....Stay away patrons but if you are so unlucky to frequent one of their establishments don't take it out on the servers..do the math, they will now be claiming over $100,000 in tips from all their servers and bartenders per annum, the server wage increase has been detrimental and this company will get there's!

  36. I knew and worked with the FAB team of owners when they were all starting out, working themselves for another large Pub Group.
    They all left due to what they felt were unfair practices by the owner towards them as employees.
    At the start of building their our company, they of course treated their staff with courtesy and fairness, they needed to, in order to build a good reputation with customers, which only a well trained,loyal,competent and satisfied staff can create.
    As they grew, this need became less and less a priority for them and staff turnover, even with management became epidemic.
    The cycle continues.
    Truly successful companies know that employees are the heart and soul of any industry and when they feel expendable can undermine future growth and valuable resources spent on training and development are wasted.

  37. I read the letter FAB delivered to their employees re: new tip division, I know they are being 'singled out' but really!! to advise employees that their 'house' tip is being given to 'your' restaurant is ridiculous!! it should have stated to 'OUR' restaurant..never again will I spend my $ there...

  38. "enjoys a reputation of honesty and integrity throughout the industry and our pubs take these standards personally. We are committed to the care of all our employees and our growth is complemented by a culture of teamwork, having fun while working diligently, and excitement."" blah blah..blah

    This is the 'image' implied, there are two owners living very well from the proceeds of
    I think 7? establishments, when they say increased credit card costs and operating costs.. to explain the new employee 'tax' for working for them..it really might more relate to increased living standards for them.. hey good for them..
    But when you do it at the loss of employee loyalty it will bite you in your 'bottom line' corporate ass.

  39. Remy's Yorkville. 115 Yorkville Avenue.

    The Good:
    -No official uniforms. Staff must wear black/white/grey, but they can wear anything from Lululemon pants to sneakers.

    -Amazing seasonal staff. Great place to make friends with coworkers and party.


    -1% to the bar, 1% to the hostess, 0.5% to the house, 1.5% to the busboy for a total of 4% per shift for servers.
    -Bartenders only tip out the busboys, but are expected to tip them 1-3%.

    -Laid back environment. You can sit down when you're not busy, chat with the staff.

    The bad:

    -Horribly tempermental management. They will yell and curse at you when in a bad mood.

    -They come up with the most ridiculous rules, seemingly for no reason but to make up rules. Example: last summer one manager suddenly decided that staff could only eat dinner at 9pm. From 5pm (start of shift) until 9pm, no one could order food. The irony was that 9pm was when the evening rush started and all of the staff was busy with tables and starving. From 7-9 we all tended to be less busy and standing around.

    -Another example: one powertripping manager decided that patting down employees to check for cell phones on shift was a good idea. It didn't go over too well.

    -The food quality is atrocious. This affects the staff in two ways. First, people complain and send food back and it is embarrassing to serve. Second, the ingredients and oils are really poor quality and when you work long shifts and have to eat there, you inevitably spend a good chunk of your shift running to the bathroom.

    -One of the owners has an insane temper and won't hesitate to go off on you, arms flailing, red faced, calling you all sorts of names in the middle of your full section. This usually happens because you have asked him to void something or "interrupted me while I was thinking!" No, I am not joking.

  40. Toni Bullonis, both the one in Yorkville and the new one at Bathurst and Steeles have a mandatory tip out of 3% to the house, you give 1% directly to the kitchen at the end of the shift and only those working at the time the tips are handed over get them( ie Day prep/dish etc, get no tips). The owners are very wealthy, running a commercial real estate company, yet ask for their tips, and as the staff is told, it is for the 'privilege of being allowed to work for them' They sold the last restaurant they owned and put the staff out of work a week after New Years, with only two days notice and then yelled at the staff in the last two days, for not doing a better job. I could go on, but really, this is about paying owners to work for them.
    There really needs to be something done, minimum servers wage is lower due to the tips they receive, owners are already given a break on the cost of these positions, taking tips essentially means they are paying less than the allowed minimum wage, and the Min Of Labour needs to wake up to that fact.

  41. Ferraro 502 on eglinton west the worst!!! I dont know what they do there, you have to give all the tips to the manager and he split it however he likes, but the only thing i know is... you dont see the tips in this place.

  42. Urban Restaurant (Urban Event Catering)

    Tip out is 7% including house and manager tip.

    Collectively the serving staff at this establishment are currently owed about $15,000 (fifteen thousand) in tips paid through credit card. Duebacks haven't been paid out since mid December 09. The owner has been running his restaurants off the gratuities earned by the restaurant's servers. Absolutely criminal.

  43. Bocca on Baldwin

    This place is a joke for a server... and not in a good way.
    The Good:
    -Really laid back, friendly, mellow staff who are willing to train you and help out whenever necessary.
    -The music... i like jazz, especially over taylor swift on repeat... haha
    -You can do pretty much whatever you want cuz the manager is not always there, so you're left on your own for hours on end.
    -The food is pretty good... but sometimes oily

    The Bad (here we go!):
    -It's an asian couple that runs it and wow, they are the stingiest, cheapest owners, especially HER!
    ex: she wants you to clock out the SECOND you stop working...
    ex: she will NOT hire a busboy, hostess, bartender, food runner, barista, to help out.
    -She talks down to you and you can tell she has no respect for you, unless she wants something...
    -The tip out is 4%... where it goes.. nobody knows... since there is NO bartender. NO hostess. NO food runner. NO busser. NO expo...super sketchy.
    -The credit card machine takes forever and sometimes times out for no reason, so on top of everything else, you have this bullshit to deal with..
    -Oh yeah, they understaff all the time, so the staff that IS working get's screwed with 15+ tables and no sections.
    -The bar is disgusting(cups dirty, counter never wiped fully,etc) cleanliness wise because since there is no bartender, the servers don't do any bar maintenance.. kegs NEVER pour properly, etc..
    -You get the shittiest tips and are embarrassed to give people their bill when you know your quality of service was shit when you have to do everything yourself, :. have no time for small chat or even a smile.
    -This place seriously stressed me out and left me frazzled.. I don't know why I ever bothered working there, it is a joke.
    *If you have respect for yourself, want to make good money, want to work somewhere where your not worked like a dog for mediocre tips... then AVOID BOCCA on Balwin!!!!!

  44. Someone really should put a profile together on the Green Room. The bar is a classic Annex destination, but everyone is paid under the table, and under minimum serving wage. Servers are made to pool their tips, and the owner takes something like a 10% cut.

    Staff are fired arbitrarily -- I worked two shifts there and had guests telling me how they could tell I was new because I was so friendly. I was promised I would be called when she next needed me, but never heard from her again.

    On the floor, she micromanages like crazy, and all the floor staff live in a state of fear!

    The kitchen staff slave away like crazy, but get no tip out!

    I feel like the only way this place is in operation is due to
    a) being connected to organized crime and/or
    b) paying off city officials

    Seriously. It's really too bad, because it's a great location, has an awesome patio, great atmosphere, good food etc. However, people have no rights there and are treated abysmally.

  45. Six Steps is among the many restaurants using servers tips to pay the rent!
    On large parties they tip out 9% to the HOUSE yes that is to the owner Pat Quinn. On top of that 4% to the support staff. 1.5% to the buser whom is usually off in a corner praying during the busiest time of the night. The poor hostess only gets .5% and the bartenders make 1.5%. This leaves another two percent to the house, technically they are tipping out 11% on any large parties leaving 7% for the servers to split up. Oh did I mention the manager also takes a chunk of this? Well he does.
    The dining room tips out 6% on regular days with only one bus boy and one host for the whole restaurant. With 3.5% going to the support staff this means the remaining amount 2.5% is going to the owner and the manager.
    At what point is tipping out 11% not considered theft????
    Who wants to join me in starting a servers union???

  46. Hot House Cafe...where to start

    The Good
    Fellow co-workers were an amazing and talented group of people! I worked there 1999-2000 and met two of my closest friends there.

    Good deal on food and drinks for servers.

    During my time the management team was great. They were helpful, supportive and always on the floor!

    I forget exactly how much we tipped out but I think it was on par with most places 5-6%. The bussers, kitchen and hosts were great and deserved every penny we gave them.

    The Bad

    The staff became like family (that's not the bad part) mainly because we spent every minute awake, together. Most of us were scheduled 6 days a week without being asked and 90 % of those shifts were splits...not straight throughs...splits. We arrived 10:30/11:00 am worked a crazy busy lunch, had 2 or 3 hours off and cam back to do it all over again. The money was good but you were so freaking tired and burnt out that you couldn't enjoy it. If you complained that you needed an extra day off or asked for just a lunch shift, your schedule the following week would reflect your lack of "dedication to the team".

    We had to buy an apron, two ties and two white button downs (shirts $40 each) when we were hired. I found out later that the dry cleaner around the corner sold our shirts for $15 because there were so many staff that would drop off for cleaning and either quit or get fired and never return for there shirts. The owner and management knew this too but would rather have you cough up over $100 to work there.

    The Ugly...otherwise known as the owner

    A.L. as I will refer to him was the worst owner or manager that I have ever worked for, and I have worked in the culinary industry since I was 16. He was rude and totally condescending to his staff, especially the FOH. One Friday lunch I had a table of 16, a 14, 3 four tops and a 2, at the same time. Needless to say I was a little busy, but A.L. didn't care. He yelled at me because I was too busy running drinks, taking orders and looking after my guests to run my food. What was I paying the food runner for? Hmmmmmmm?????? I'm a pretty strong server so that was one of the few times that I felt the rath of A.L. but there were servers who felt it on a daily basis. He was phony to a point that he would praise you in front of regulars that he liked of that like him, but if you were talking with regulars that liked you, he would talk down to you in front of them.

    I lasted a year, and most of the people that were hired at the same time as me left around the same time. It was a horrible experience only because of A.L. He was a slave driver and didn't respect his staff, and from what I hear, hasn't changed a bit. There are tons of restaurants in TO that you can make great money and leave having fond memories. Hopefully this will give servers a heads up and they will think twice before applying there.

  47. I would like to review AQUILLA Restaurant at 347 Keele st. The major intersection is Keele and Dundas.

    The establishment is very clean and has a great ambiance and the food is very well prepared. I'm posting this anonymously but I will be very true and honest and will give praise where its due.

    The owner and head chef of this restaurant is Jose Corniellis and one of the managers is his son Marcel.

    Marcel is a very nice young man with people skills. His father on the other hand is the most vile human being I've ever met.
    He yells and swears at his staff and is EXTREMELY rude. I worked there and quit because it was such an unpleasant and unprofessional environment.

    My first day, I witnessed him yelling and swearing at another server and his kitchen staff. The girl who trained me told me that he was always like this but I should not take it to heart. I'm not used to being disrespected and I did take it to heart when he started swearing at me on my second shift!
    Marcel his son, kept apologizing for his father's behavior.

    This is NOT a good place to work and I guarantee that this business will fail. Jose fails to understand that he needs a happy staff and a professional environment for his business to do well. If your staff is unhappy then your guests will be unhappy.
    I dreaded going to work. Servers, please avoid AQUILLA Restaurant. You will quit after just a few shifts.

  48. I would like to know in a strictly 'legal sense' Does the tip money belong to the house to be distributed as they want or does it belong to the server? Does anyone know for sure? I would think since servers are expected to claim 10% of their total sales as tips that it would belong to the server..if this is true why do these places make the decisions?

  49. I am surprised no one has mentioned Capitol (Clinton and College). I worked there years ago when I first moved to Toronto and didn't know any better. The owner is a mentally unstable woman who yells and screams at staff and customers alike. They pool tips and the owner and her husband each take an equal cut out of the pool. I do not recommend this establishment for consumers or employees. It was a very bad experience.

  50. The Twisted Kilt...Yonge/Davisville. Stay away. I worked for a bit but then saw how poorly it was run by the owner.

    The owner was nice at first and helpful but very hands on. Micromanaging at it's finest. Well it never let up. Being there at 5pm was the worst when it started to get busier. Who wants to be stressed when they walk in the door?

    The tip out was not bad at 2% bar/3%floor but the BOH never saw it. The chefs started asking the servers what/when they tipped out because they were not seeing any of it. We were all talking amongst ourselves and getting pissed off. Clearly it was going to the owner. Some calculated over $2000 a month.

    This is a new restaurant(Oct09)but claims to have experience in the industry. Really? He does nothing but complain, talks to his staff in a very demeaning and condisending tone. Gets mad if you talk w/guests. I thought that was a big part of the job!

    Staff are not happy but really do a good job not showing it as they are all professionals. There has been a revolving door though. Already 4 chefs gone and most new staff last 2 weeks.

    Pay is consistantly late, most did not get paid for training, 3 stat days over xmas were not paid to most staff unless begged for.

    Glad to be gone.

    1. I worked here a few years ago May-Sep 2010 and I agree with the above comments. Not getting paid on time, no vacation pay or statutory holidays. He is unprofessional and definitely doesn't know how to talk to his employees.The staff is amazing but good staff is always leaving. Turnover was insane. Besides the owner, everyone was nice back then. A lot of that money goes in his pocket. I have heard few of the employees have file complaint against him at the labour board. Definitely don't recommend this place.

  51. O.K. Severs and Guests this is your chance to change things. We need to band together to change legislation with the Ministry of Labour. By signing this petition to the Minister of Labour he will have to look at this current "stipulation", with enough signatures, he will change it. No more tip out!


  52. Is there anyone there with any knowledge about Spring Rolls Go, Located at 10 Dundas, near Eaton Centre. I might be workinmg there but i HAVE NO IDEA what the atmosphere will be there. The food is alright and prices are okay.

  53. I'm sad to see this being ignored. Perhaps spredding the word a bit...

  54. I was once a server for 3 days and I never felt so degraded and screwed over. After that I decided that I would never be anyone's bitch, kissing ass and begging for a tip. I became self employed and I am happy. People you have a choice, if you can do NOT go into the restaurant service business, you are just a glorified servant and no one has any respect for you starting with the owner, the managers and the public

  55. Mariposa Cruises.
    Tips are pooled (if there are any at all) and divided between all servers and bartenders. 10% of grats go to the management. The rest is divided.

  56. Hey

    Great News! Michael Prue, MPP for beaches, eastyork is introducing a private members bill in October to make it illegal for restaurant owners and managers to take tips from servers......the 1st step to making this law....we need a groundswell of support for this action. Will keep you posted.....isn't it FABulous!!!!!!

    1. K so whats happening with the bill for no more tipping out owners???what has mpp come up with?

  57. Second the comment about Southern Accent. One of the best places in the city to work, the best staff and Frances the owner is awesome.

  58. Pickle Barrel Sherway Gardens

    I worked there for two months, and this was after working at the Outbck Steakhouse for 12 years. This is a sample of the letter than I sent to head office (and of course got no response from) upon my dismissal.

    My name is Dan and recently I have been let go from PB.

    In my opinion, Pickle Barrel at Sherway Gardens is one of the most poorly run restaurants I have ever worked at. Shane tells you out of one side of his mouth that the customer comes first, but then on the other side he tells you that you have to work a seven table section, run food, get your drinks, wait ten minutes while the bartenders make your drinks and wait another ten minutes while the dessert people make your deserts. It is a massive contradiction in ideologies as you cannot have it both ways. You cannot run your servers into the ground, stress them out, berate them (I’ll get into this in a minute), criticize them and then expect them to serve the guest quickly and efficiently, develop a rapport with them and have time to do all of the above. I understand time management is tantamount to success in a fast paced environment like Pickle Barrel. However, there is a fine line between time management and asking the impossible. Servers working at Sherway Gardens Pickle Barrel are right on the precipice. By pushing them over that precipice, you create an atmosphere that is not conducive to excellent customer relations.

    I’ll give you an example. On Thursday night, I had a 6 table section, which was fine. The problem was I was triple and quad sat in all three turns. Other servers observed my stress levels and they saw that I was sat frequently. They expressed their empathy towards me and their anger towards the host that night as some of them had 1 or 2 tables. Because of this, I wasn’t able to run any food that night and I spoke to Alex and apologized to her not being able to do so. She told me “Don’t worry about it, just do your best.”

    This was one of the reasons Shane cited for my dismissal. I find this to be unacceptable as it doesn’t matter how good a server you are or how long you have been serving (I’ve been serving for 15 years), unless you have four hands and can be in three different places at once, you will not be able to do what Shane and Alex expect of you.

    Shane in my opinion is tyrannical. He has no people skills, he is rude, crude, obnoxious, sexist and (sorry for the strong words) an imbecile. He berates people in front of other servers. He doesn’t take the time to ask your side of anything, he just takes the word of his minions and then chastises you in front of the staff. Never have I seen this at another restaurant. I worked at the Outback Steakhouse for 12 years before they closed down. In that time, I had 5 different proprietors and perhaps as many as 20 different managers come and go, and not once did I observe any of them berate an employee in front of the staff. It was always done in the office. Shane has a lot of growing to do. Just because you run the place doesn’t give you the right to embarrass your employees in front of other employees.

    Management there will berate, yell, lie and harass you in front of the other staff. I have confronted and stood up to them, and this cost me my job. PB is a terrible place to work at, and I long for the days of Outback. I's a shame they shut down in Canada.

    Kind regards,

    Dan Grant

    Needless to say, Pickle Barrel is a mess of a restaurant.


    I laughed because I felt, as I read the review for BLOOR STREET DINER (Which is owned by EATERTAINMENT), that I could just as well copy and paste what was said.
    Eatertainment is a catering company. I've worked with so many catering companies in the city and this one truly lies at the bottom of the barrel. JD, as well as other event coordinators there, are miserable and I get the sense it comes from their employers. Unfortunately, they believe in getting what they want out of the staff by spreading that misery onto them. It took her a year and a half just to learn my name (no exaggeration). It is a poisonous atmosphere.
    I worked at their Panorama restaurant for a few (literally) shifts and it was disgusting. The very first thing we were tasked to do was "polish the plates". There was grime all over them....these are plates that are already stacked in the Waiters' station, "ready" for service. It's a running joke amongst our staffing company (and our staff is in the hundreds) about having to polish plates whenever we go to work there. The dishwashing area is something out of a Wes Craven horror film. It simply doesn't work and the dishwashers are left to improvise. A very dank, dark room for them to work in.

  60. The Bowl on Bayview, or Yonge(near Wellsley) or Dundas, is one of the cheapest places to work at. The owner, Ky Ha, is an angry, condescending man, he yells at the wait staff and the kitchen for the slightest errors, and still expects you to tip out the house 1-2%. This was supposedly to cover costs of breakages, etc. but this was all BS as the kitchen's tip out was downgraded from 2.5% to 2% tip out. Frankly, I would rather give my money to any support staff who deserves it instead of lazy owners making bank on my hard work.

    At the Bowl, there were no bartenders, bussers or host. I had to work the entire floor myself, and on busy nights it was deadly. Neither the manager nor the owner were ever appreciative of the work you did, as though as a server you were literally a slave for them. In addition, when you started, you would have to sign a contract that stated you would have to wait two full weeks to receive your pay, which sucked because they would only hire you in the begining week of a new payroll, meaning some people had to wait a month minimum to collect their wages -if they got paid on time...

    ..But they never did pay you on time. Their cheques bounced frequently, they didn't pay for holidays, made you work 12 plus hour shifts, didn't pay for training, and had so many restrictions on staff meals you didn't even bother to eat there. They only paid you for the littlest amount of time possible, for ex. if the restaurant opened at 11 am, they only paid you to come in at 11 am, not anytime before. When you were finished your floor shift, they counted that time as the end of your shift, not including your cashout which could add another 15 minutes plus to your schedule. They prefected the art of flouting labour rules and conduct. One manager even told me that in order to work for him, I would need to ask him for permission to use the bathroom! You never had set breaks, and when I quit and ask for references from one of the managers who I thought was on good terms with, she slandered me to my new jobs!

    All the food itself is ok but overpriced, and considering that the owner needs to dip into server's pockets for money, he shouldn't be off gallivanting around opening new businesses that he can't afford. Another former server filed a complaint with the labour board but it took six months for the board to actually send a request for the owners to start paying the employees on time. As for me, I could still sue them civilly because I have proof they slandered me, and broke labour rules by waiting too long to pay me properly.

    Unfortunately, I know that the owner doesn't have any money so it would be a fruitless venture to hire a lawyer and spend my money just to get a victory in name. Instead of getting mad, I'm getting even, and letting people out there know about how this shameful 'restaurant' truly is.

  61. The owners that charge employees for tip out they should be all investigated by the tax man .
    And give the waiters ,a bit of respect for what they do for them,because if would be waiters would not be sales ,sorry would not be stilling Any more so i thing that province wide they should go on strike till this matter is clear .
    If u like to participate on this idea send me an email to vnv@cogeco.ca till there i wish every one on this profession happy new year and better results for every one.


  62. The Standard Pizza and Pasta Bar (in Little Italy)
    Kitchen staff is made up of only men who are abusive, misogynistic, and sometimes verge on sexually harassing the staff. I was a food runner and the chef loved me... to a point that I was hit on constantly and the owner just laughs. They play the grey area with their food runners and bussers, paying the alcohol server's wage of $8.90/h even though we don't touch alcohol.

    Servers have to cover the bill if their table does a 'dine and dash'

    I never received my final pay cheque from them (they owe me for 2 weeks) after I was cut at the end of the season and there is discrepancy of about $430 between the last pay stub I do have and the T4 I received from them.
    Their accounting is very sketchy since it is done by the owner's mother. They often manage to not pay you for a few hours and are at least 2 weeks behind on pay.

    As one server said: "suicidal thoughts come naturally with working at The Standard"

  63. In re: the new bill to ban tipping out the house
    I really don't see how the province will be able to enforce this. All restaurants collect the tipout in cash, which leaves no paper trail. If you refuse, or ask for a receipt, magically next week's schedule will see your shifts reduced or ended. Add in that it is highly unlikely that the province would pay to hire inspectors. This bill won't change criminal behavior by restaurateurs until the bite is so severe they the owners tremble at the thought.

  64. I am lucky enough to be one of approximately 12 people who will speak to the Standing Committee at Queens Park in November regarding Bill 49!
    This site is an incredible tool for me to gather the info I need to get the point across to the Standing Committee. I thank you for that. If anyone would like to add any info I may need, please feel free to post as I will be checking back on this site daily! And good luck to us all!

  65. I just finished working for an upscale Japanese place on Adelaide called Yuzu no Hana and was disgusted by their exploitative practices. PLEASE DO NOT WORK THERE. This place seemed great at first--beautiful delicious food, great atmosphere, friendly serving and kitchen staff and seemingly few "dirty" secrets.

    But slowly, things came out in the wash. After a month of working there (4 dinner shifts/week), I had earned less than $500.00 including tips, which were compiled every 2 weeks and rolled into my paycheck (I was also paid server's minimum WITHOUT tips for the first 3 weeks.) This is a restaurant that on a busy night was selling $6000.00. There were no sections--we all shared the tables. While I don't mind pooling tips, I was appalled to learn that they was an arbitrary hierarchy established by the owner, by which different servers were making different amounts. I was regularly harassed by the owners wife for not taking more shifts, and was promised more money in the future if my service proved to be "outstanding." When I quit, based on the fact that I couldn't even pay my rent, both the owner and his wife tried to buy me off in cash, to "make up" for the money I had lost in the first month.

    I would like to mention that I was the only Caucasian server, and the majority of the staff was Japanese. From having lived in Japan I know that they don't have a tipping system there, so the majority of the servers had no idea how much they should realistically be making in a night. Nobody knows the details of the cashout system, but when we sat down and crunched numbers it was apparent that about 50% of all tips were disappearing. This kind of exploitation should never be supported. The owners of YUZU also run JAPANGO, which I hear has a very similar system. Thanks for listening, and thanks to everyone here for their hard work. Let's set things straight!

  66. Well everyone, not much activity on this site which is strange considering the importance of Bill 49? I was lucky enough to be one of the 12 to speak to the 'Standing committee'. It was fascinating! Myself and others covered the many things we have to pay for (breakage, uniforms, etc) and paying the house and managers through our tip out! The following link is the proposed amendment to the law: http://www.ontla.on.ca/bills/bills-files/40_Parliament/Session2/b049rep.pdf The house comes back to sit again on Feb. 18th. If you want this to go through sooner than later let your MPP know. It is a shame we did not see more of you at the standing committee, afterall, think about how much money you will save by not tipping out to the house!

  67. I worked as a server for a small family run restaurant in Guelph back in 2010. Not only was I paid a pathetic $8/hour, the owner and chef took 30% of my tips!

    The restaurant only had six tables, which I waited by myself (except on Fridays). I also had to prep/assemble the soup and salad that went with every meal, dry and put away dishes, restock the shelves with napkins, take away containers, drinks, etc; clean the bathrooms (in between serving customers since they did not want to pay me for extra time after the restaurant closed). I stopped going into work eventually because I couldn't take it anymore.

  68. I worked in Mandarin as Server, They take 40% of the total tip. Servers only get 8.75 min/h wage, plus we have to start 15 mins early(not paid) and no 15 mins break during shifts. you work so hard, by the end of the day, they take your 3.5% of total sale(after tax) as house money. works out close to 40% of our tip income since average tip is 10%.

  69. UPDATE

    Hello all,
    Sun TV here in Toronto is in the process of putting together a story on Bill 49 and tip-outs to restaurant owners. Mia Gordon, the producer has asked our office to seek workers who will come forward and speak about their experiences with owners who steal or have stolen their tip money.

    If you are willing to help, please email me with permission for Mia to contact you.

    Please be assured that we will not share any contact info without your permission.

    Many thanks!

    Laurie Orrett
    Executive Assistant to Michael Prue, MPP

  70. Here is the revised Bill 49: http://www.ontla.on.ca/bills/bills-files/40_Parliament/Session2/b049rep.pdf
    Please email or call your local MPP and Premier Wynne and tell them that for everyday this bill is not passed, your hard earned money is being stolen from you! Because it is! If there is an election in the spring, all this hard work will be lost. Don't be apathetic and lazy, make the calls now and put more money in your own pocket! I did my part by telling the standing committee about all we pay for, tipouts, breakage, uniforms, wrong orders, losses, etc, etc.
    Now please do something for me and all of us! Thank you!

  71. Sadly, due to our Provincial Legislature being dissolved, Bill 49 is now DEAD!
    I understand that not enough people put pressure on Kathleen Wynne to bring the bill to the house for final approval. I am deeply upset. How can people who get their hard earned money taken from them not bother to make a phone call or send an email?! So now we will all continue to lose money until this bill is introduced in the house again and take forever to be passed, if at all. Sad, very sad. Words can't even describe how disappointed I am!

  72. Review of Working (as a server) at Moxies 70 University:

    Worked as a Dining Room Server.
    Training is 5 shifts plus 1 orientation. High standards, menu tests, and secret shops.

    Uniform was pretty expensive ($65 for apron and shirt + $11 for Squirrel card).

    Dining Room Servers get shafted in terms of money, but do have the shortest hours, so it's great if you just need a bit of extra income, but not enough to survive on comfortably, unless you're closing every night, in which case you'd make way more working in the lounge, working an extra hour or two).

    Tip out is 4.5% of total sales (including sales and tax) plus $1 to Dine and Dash per shift. This goes roughly 1/2 to Bar and 1/2 to support staff (hosts, runners) and it's worth it for the support staff. You gotta chase the bartender down to tip them out personally, which can be frustrating if you need to leave and they're not around.

    Working environment has its pros and cons. Pros: your coworkers are usually pretty great people, although the lounge can get a little catty. Support staff are pretty much always amazing, the kitchen people are actually fantastic (no yelling or abuse at this place).
    Cons: The GM can be a little moody, one day everything is fine, next day he's patting you down for a cell phone and has imposed austerity measures on using citrus. Managers have been known to use drugs on shift.
    You have to wash and dry the linens in order to do rollups. Yes, you have to do laundry during your shift. And there are NEVER enough linens to finish the required 40 rollups.
    Heels + stairs to the kitchen = my poor feet. And even dining room servers have to wear heels.

    The Ugly: Hope you like doing unpaid work. They don't like to pay you and have set up a whole system designed to avoid paying you. This includes automatically deducting breaks you didn't get to take if you worked 5 hours or more, not paying you for more than 30 minutes after you're cut (despite requiring you to do duties (laundry) that can take over an hour). They /say/ you can ask to have your time extended, but if you ask, be prepared to get the cold shoulder from management.

    Overall, I'd give this place an 8/10 with the caveat that I didn't want to work late and didn't mind making $20-40 some nights as long as I got to go home between 6:30-8:30.

  73. Bier Markt Esplanade (Server)

    Pros: Made mad cash! The money was amazing. I've never made this much as a server and I doubt I ever will again.
    Christmas was amaaazing!

    Cons: You work FOREVER. and ever and ever and ever. No book offs, no vacation time, Work a split 12-3 then again 4pm - 4am. I missed weddings, camping trips, birthdays, things I booked off months in advance...
    The uniform was a $75 lacoste shirt.. I've heard it's something else now that's apparently a touch sexist and revealing for the ladies.
    Tip out was 4.5% pretax total (so decent) but you bus your own tables.
    Management was.. variable.. I've met the sweetest people ever, and also some of the most temperamental/borderline verbally abusive ever.
    The kitchen was a new level of abusive. Swearing, name calling, throwing things at servers..
    The staff were usually pretty great, but even the best servers start to crack while working 80 hour weeks.
    The pit - AKA cocktailing on Fri/Saturday. You could make a ton, you could get screwed, sometimes you pooled, other times people were kinda greedy.
    If you rang it in, you're paying for it, even if the guest is nowhere to be found after ordering 10 shots.
    Separate checks - Bruutal, parties of 30 all up and moving around, demanding separate bills. Dine and Dash was a little sketchy.. if they can get out of paying it, they will try.

    Overall: If don't mind working until you drop, it's a 9/10, but if work-life balance is what you're after, I would not recommend.