Tip on Exemplary Service, not Expectation

Physician's Money Digest, March 2006, Volume 13, Issue 3

Wall Street

Journal

While most patrons understand that thewait staff member who attended to yourevery dining need throughout the eveningwarrants a 15% to 20% tip, many consumersare up in the air about how muchother food service employees should betipped—or if they should even receive amonetary thank you. The offers some tips on how to showyour gratitude in other restaurant situations.Your sommelier, who provided a perfectwine pairing to your duck, may garneran 8% tip of the cost of the wine, while etiquetteexpert Emily Post recommends 15%to 20%. Because sushi chefs handle food,and not money, you should not offer a tip,even if your tuna roll was extra spicy andplated with an extra heaping of ginger.When picking up takeout food, leave 10%to 15% if you are a regular and the establishmenttosses in extras, like fortune cookiesor fresh bread. If a coffeehouse workerserves your coffee in espresso time, tosssome change in their tip jar. What if youdon't feel obligated to do so? You're notalone. According to a survey on EmilyPost.com, 70% do not tip at counter serviceestablishments.