How do you prepare your service in a busy restaurant?

Before opening up your restaurant to your guests, always make sure that you’re fully prepared – after all, failing to prepare is preparing to fail.

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So what do you need to consider before welcoming all of your keen diners?

1. Punctuality

Make sure all staff are present and ready at least 10 minutes before service begins, as members of staff rushing in at the last minute and dealing with customers in a flustered state will not look good.

2. Be ready for your specific role

All staff members should be ready for their particular role, whether that’s waiting on tables, helping in the kitchen or behind the bar. Ensure that they’re in the correct uniform and are smart and presentable, with any equipment they need for their specific role.

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3. Brief all staff

Make sure all staff are aware of details they need for their shift, such as particular table reservations, guest requests, today’s specials, menu changes or shortages, and health and safety considerations.

4. Presentation and cleanliness

Ensure that the restaurant is presentable and all tables are laid correctly and consistently with fresh linen, clean cutlery and glasses. Make sure all finishing touches and table decorations are present. Any background music should be appropriate for the setting and playing at a suitable volume.

5. Food preparation

Make sure that any food that can be prepared in advance is done so and stored and organised appropriately. The website highlights how kitchens will need plenty of refrigerators for holding perishables. Most busy catering businesses can maximise their storage space for chilled and frozen food by using a cold room, such as one of the walk in cold rooms seen here:

6. Re-stock the bar

The bar needs to be clean and fully stocked, with all drink garnishes such as lemon and limes and ice prepared and readily available. Any bar snacks should be available and fully topped up. All glasses should be checked for marks and wiped if necessary. Never serve a drink in a dirty glass.

7. Plan for mishaps

Busy shifts can lead to a few spilt drinks or even some accidental breakages. Have cleaning supplies ready for such instances so they can be dealt with swiftly will minimise any disruption, allowing you to continue with service as usual.