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Wait Staff Personnel of European Restaurants

Paul Fielding - Tuesday, January 08, 2013

After a little interest and a little research based on wait staff hire Sydney and the different roles wait staff play around the world, we've condensed our reading and research in to a glossary below. Much of our reading came from one source, which you can read about here. In Australia, you will certainly find a hierarchy within restaurants, particularly fine dining, but it's very refreshing to see the black and white career path of a professional waiter from this revered European dining culture.

Maitre d'hotel is the main man (or woman!). They are the manager of the restaurant, and responsible staffing the shift, training, greeting guests, and managing any issues. They are the main link between kitchen and floor, and ensure quality standards in food and service are met. Here in Australia, it is commonly known that the "Maitre 'd" may be the head waiter, or primarily responsible for greeting guests and managing bookings, however there will almost certainly be a restaurant manager on shift they report to.

The Maitre d'hotel will have up to 3 Assistant Managers on shift to support them. The AMs will look after important tasks such as greeting guests, managing tables and bookings, perhaps assisting wait staff at the pass, answering phones or preparing bills and accepting payments.

The Sommelier, also known in Australian fine dining restaurants, is responsible for the wine list. They will source and stock a selection of wines to compliment the restaurant and its menu, and whilst on shift, recommend, open, test and pour wines for guests. Not restricted to wines in Europe, they will also look after their range of apertifs and digestives.

Working with the AMs, 2-3 Station de tete waiters seat guests, explain the menu, and take food orders. Having only 2-3 staff responsible for taking food orders should allow the kitchen respite between tickets, and promote a smooth service period.

Next in the brigade is Chef du rang, 1-2 of whom are allocated to each Station de tete. Their role is table side dining on the Gueridon, and they do most of the serving. Each Chef du rang may have the support of a Demi Chef du rang who will assist with serving, setting perfect tables, and maintaining and stocking the Gueridon.

As with a kitchen brigade, a Commis will do the ground work. Allocated 1 to each station, it is their role to ensure the cutlery is polished, stations are stocked, tables are cleared and re set properly, and napkins are folded. They will clear plates from diners, but not serve.

Is there a restaurant or a market in Sydney for such a brigade? In the Aussie fashion, we may be too relaxed and not focused enough on service traditions/professionalism to carry out such specific roles. Our wait staff hire Sydney encompasses factors in all of these roles, but not so specifically broken down. If you would like to read any further info regarding wait staff hire in Sydney, please visit by following the link.


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