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Monday, December 12, 2011

Yes, We Know You Want COLD Beer, Asshole

Everyone wants their beer to be cold. It's pretty much expected. That's why there are signs in front of bars that say "Ice Cold Beer!" If the signs said "Luke-warm Beer!" or "Room Temperature Beer!" nobody would want to go to that bar. That's why it's so annoying when people order a beer from me and then always add the extra "a cold one." Really, sir? You want a cold beer? Thank you for clarifying so I didn't bring you the one that was just came out of the oven. Last week, a man ordered a beer and then gave me a very specific instruction. "Can you get it from the back of the refrigerator and make sure it's the coldest one?" Little did he know, every beer in the reach-in had been in there since the night before so they were all the same temperature. What he also didn't know is that I don't have the time or physical dexterity to get on my knees and reach all the way to the back just to get the "coldest one." My fingers do not have super sensitive thermostats on them allowing me to determine which bottle is a tenth of a degree colder than another one. The last thing he didn't know is that I don't fucking care.

His table was pretty close to the bar so I knew he would be watching to see if I really reached all the way to the back or not when retrieving his beer. I squatted down and grabbed the first bottle of beer I touched but made sure to rattle it against other beer bottles so the clinking sound would register with him as me reaching all the way to the back to get that ice cold beer he wanted. I placed it on his table. "This one is really cold," I told him. "My fingers are freezing!" He took a sip and gave me the "thumbs up" to let me know it met his expectations. I wonder what he thought I would do if he gave me a "thumbs down." Later, I saw his bottle was almost empty. "Sir, would you like another beer?"

"Yes, I would. Can you make sure you get the coldest one for me?" Really? So he has to reiterate that he wants a cold beer? I am so happy he reminded me because I had just put a six pack of beer into a pot of boiling water and I might have accidentally given him one of those had he not refreshed my memory that he wanted cold beer. After all, a whole fifteen minutes had passed by and I had completely forgotten his special instructions. He told me again. "Just get the bottle that's all the way in the back, thanks."

Again, I jingle-jangled the bottles as I pulled the beer from the front of the reach-in. "Here you are, sir. I think this one is even colder than the first one!" He took a swig and gave me the customary thumbs up. I gave him the imaginary finger.

Customers, we know you want your beer to be cold. We also know you want your coffee to be hot. There is no need to verify these things because that is how everyone wants them. We are not going to really test ten different bottles of beer to see which one we think might be the coldest one. Same thing with the coffee. The only time your coffee will be "extra hot" is when you are particularly annoying and your server will feel the need to take your cup of coffee and put it in the microwave for two minutes so it's a big cauldron of scorching java that will hopefully scald your face off when you take a sip. Yes, I have done that. If I had a sub-zero super freezer I would do the same thing with that bottle of beer that you want to be "extra cold." I would love to serve your bottle encased in a block of ice and say "I wanted to make sure your beer was as cold as possible, so here's an ice pick."

Maybe I'm just too easily annoyed, but then again if I wasn't, I wouldn't be The Bitchy Waiter. We can just add "extra cold beer" to my list of least favorite things.


17 comments:

Estrellita said...

I love microwaving soup and coffee and watching the 4 million degree spoon and the customer's lip fuse together. Not really. Okay, yes, I really do.

Adam Hawthorne said...

When I worked at a bookstore-cafe people used to painstakingly select a specific baked good from a tray of twenty-or-so identical items.
Occasionally the only gratification that I could hope to receive was to "accidentally" drop their stupid cookie (or whatever it was that they were navigating me towards) and force them towards another one.

Wait, and wouldn't it make more sense that the coldest beers would be int he front of the refrigerator? I'd imagine that most places that serve perishable items employ some sort of product rotation. It's just further proof that the guy was a fucking moron.

Practical Parsimony said...

I don't drink beer, but I will rummage around in the cooler in the store near the cash register to get a Coke near the side of the cooler and about three back. Yes, it really makes a mess of the cooler, but I want it. However, if I gave those instructions to anyone, I would suspect the instructions were ignored! That does leave me with the option to say this is not as cold as I ordered, if I were ordering beer. At least beer does not come in stupid plastic bottles that never seem cold.

Mary A. said...

Until you get the beer snobs who either are FROM Europe or have just been there who say snooty things like "Americans don;'t know how to drink beer" or "I only drink Guiness from a tap, not a bottle." or "That's NOT a black & tan"

Whatever.

Ewa said...

There is such a thing as beer that's too cold. I was on a flight from Iceland back in August with my boyfriend and there were free beers on the flight so he asked for one. It was frozen. Solid. Before he realized this he opened it. We were scooping up the continuous stream of foam into various containers for 15 minutes because the flight attendants were legally not allowed to take an open container of alcohol from us.

A Beer for the Shower said...

Was he German? I hear they like their beer the temperature of freshly tapped kidney juice.

Cat M said...

A local Mexican restaurant has delicious food but their beer is not very cold. Happen in two seperate visits. Very disappointing to order delicious food and getting an almost cold Corona. But I would not order a COLD beer. I am expecting it to be cold. If it isn't then I would complain.

digressions said...

I choked on my (vodka-based) drink when I read "I gave him the imaginary finger!" I made sure not to spew it all over my computer because one, that would probably not be covered by my laptop's warranty, and second, that would be a terrible waste of vodka, and I know BW would not approve of that. Anyways... your writing is fabulous as always! I love the way you always paint such a vivid picture in the way you tell a story.

FYI, my husband is one of the probably 8 people in all of North America that does NOT like his beer very cold. Given the choice between 'ice cold' and 'room temperature' he would take the latter. I admit that is strange, but he is kind of a strange man... in a good way of course. :)

Much love to you, BW! Merry Christmas!

Noelle said...

A short related story. I bar tend for a server who orders drinks verbatim what the guest asks for It's so annoyingly unnecessary. For example.
Ketel One Vodka Martini up chilled with a chilled glass, olives, dry.

Ketel One Martini up. Is all that is necessary by default it comes chilled with a chilled glass dry with olives.

Example 2: Makers Mark press with a splash of water. HUH? You just guess he wants more water than seven.

One more: Grey Goose Gibson with cocktail onions. sigh......

These dumb things originate with the guest they may never stop asking for cold beer. NO Shit....

She's real sweet to work with but has zero cocktail experience.

Anonymous said...

I love you! You are like the god of blog. You get me through the work day. Thanks bitchy waiter :)

ServingUpAnAttitude said...

I've never microwaved the coffee--I just run the handle under the hot water tap that we use to make tea for about 30 seconds and then dry it off. I get back to the table and say 'bye the way, be careful with your coffee, I made it HOT', go to a safe watching distance, and enjoy.

My favorite was the lady who wanted her coffee 'hot but not TOO hot.' I bet she thought I would test it on my wrist the way you do with milk for a baby's bottle.

Maria said...

That guy just needed to feel like you were doing somthing extra-special just for him. You were right: he's an asshole.

Some Sort of Fairy said...

There is something wrong with you if you want coffee hotter than the 190 degrees it is when it comes out of the pot.

Anonymous said...

I once had a customer that actually asked me to warm him beer. He asked me to put it in warm water for a couple of minutes. No, I'm in a rush. I have other customers to tend to. I have no time to fill a damn sink to sit there and check to see if it is the temp you want. I will give it to you as it is and you can let it sit there at your table until it's your desired temperature moron.

Anonymous said...

aDamn it...warm his beer. I guess that makes me a moron too :/

Terry said...

I love reading your blog over coffee...I had a good chuckle over this entry...Thanks Bitchy Waiter for helping me start my day right:)

sdr said...

this is almost as awesome as some lady complaining to me her coffee was cold. nevermind it was after she dumped a bunch of room temp creamer in it and let it sit there for 15 minutes. GEEZ, I wonder why it's cold??