After speaking with a bunch of people that arrived in Australia with no experience in the Hospitality field, I decided to write a post with some tips that probably will help you in your next interview!
No one helped me with this tips and honestly? if I had found a blog with all this information in the past, that could have helped me save a lot of time and weird moments trying to solve problems hahaha
WHEN YOU ARE WORKING IN A RESTAURANT OR EVENT
Here in Australia, Hospitality is a very important business and people care a lot about EVERY SINGLE DETAIL. Something that you need to know is, as soon as the people arrive, offer them water, and give them the menu straight away…that’s really important because if the kitchen or bar is busy, at least they are not THIRSTY waiting for something to come. In most of the events that I had worked like weddings, party’s and conferences, the last thing that needs to be taken from the table is the water, so even when you take the plates of the dessert out, remember to leave the water glass until the end.
When someone is ordering food: You need to know that the meals have COURSES….so for example, you have 3 people on the table. They ordered 1 entry and 2 mains, you should to ask them if they want the entry first or all together, right? if u send an entry to the kitchen they probably will think that is meant to go first before the main plates so it is always good to double check, as you can see in this example that I gave, one of the costumers is eating the entry as a main and if you don’t make a note for the kitchen that plate would come first and then the other ones …you never know!
In the events and fine dining is common to “Lap” people… that means that you need to open the napkin in their lap when they sit on the table. What I normally do is just say hello, introduce myself and say excuse me, then “lap” them.
Now, even before you go to an interview…try to carry 3 plates, practice at home (is not really difficult and you can check some tips on youtube) that would make such a difference and looks that you know a little bit at least! hahaha
Most of the hospitality events they have a really fancy table, with lots of cutlery and glasses but you don’t need to freak out. At least not now that you are reading this!
Basically, you always start eating from the outside to the inside…that means that the outside is the entry cutlery then you can find the main one. Also, you will see a little plate that is ready for the bread and some cutlery on the top that is meant to be for the dessert. If you only have 2 wine glasses per person, one definitely will be for the water.
ABOUT THE DRINKS:
Well, Australia has such large options of beers, wines, and cocktails….best way to remember is to try all of them! but here it goes some good tips:
1- Ginger beer and ginger ale are softs drinks! It’s really common to mix ginger ale with Wisky and they call “DRY” WISKY AND DRY, RUM AND DRY, ETC…thats means ginger ale! and Ginger beer is not really a beer it is just the name.
2- Canadian Club Whisky they call CC…so they normally ask for a cc and dry. Bundaberg Rum they call BUNDY! and be careful to don’t confuse with BOURBUN…thats one of the most common mistakes in the bar…really easy to think that is bourbon and then you realized they ask you for a bundy. BOURBON is a type of whisky a little bit sweet, a very common one here in Australia is JIM BEAN.
3- Scotch, is whisky…normally JONNY WALKER…
4- JD is Jack Daniels…very common to drink with coke…or ON THE ROCK…that would be just with ice.. or NEAT without ice just pure whisky.
5- Exist all these drinks that I listed above premixed in bottles, these little bottles are known by STUBBIES. So now if they ask you for a JD Stubby you know what it is 😀
6- Lemon & Lime Bitters, it is another soft drink, normally we mix lemonade (that’s how they call sprite) + lime cordial + Angostura bitters and a few slices of lime&lemon. You can buy that premix as well but most of the restaurants they make by order… taste very good with vodka!
7- Beers, beers, and beers…. I feel I will never stop learning about the beers because they’re so many options that never ends… Some basic things just to understand about the TAP.
Tap Beer in Brazil we normally call CHOPP. Its the beer that comes from the machine and you serve in 3 different sizes. POT (Smaller one), SCHOONER (Medium) PINT (Large).
8- Exist “DRY” that means is not sweet at all…then you need to understand there are beers with full strength, mid-strength…that mean the quantity of alcohol they have, normally 3.5%…(Full have more) and then you have the light beers that are lower alcohol and also carbs. You can even find some beers with almost no carbs but full strength like Pure Blond Beer.
9- Lots of beers have the same version but mid-strength like HEINEKEN AND HEINEKEN 3 (MID)…OR XXXX GOLD (MID) XXXX SUMMER (FULL)
10- So after you get your RSA you will understand more about that part of the strength and people they will ask you a lot about because here we can drink and drive…and probably if u drink light beers or mid-strength you can drink more than 1…
11- COCKTAILS: Per “Law” in QLD they are supposed to have 60ml maximum…that means that you can play around with your mix but not exceed that amount of alcohol. So always when you are doing a trial or something in places that they sell alcohol ask if they do DOUBLES and on the rocks…Because most of the places don’t sell double shots for normal spirits, just in cocktails.
12- BUBBLES the same as CHAMPAGNE or SPARKLING WINE
13- Mineral Water is actually SPARKLING WATER and not NORMAL WATER
14- Have you tried to open a champagne bottle? that reminds me of my first job in a restaurant in Pacific Fair on the Gold Coast where I got fired for the first time in my life…It was a fancy restaurant and I was making such a mess with the champagne. hahaha…Anyway, it is very simple, you just need to take the lid out with your hands and then you hold the cork and you need to twist ONLY the bottle and not the cork. The bottle will open perfectly and without a mess!! To pour go slow, very slow!! it is good to twist the glass.
WHAT ABOUT THE COFFEES?
COFFEES: They have lots of different types of coffees but is all basically a mix of milk & coffee!
Piccolo: same of the latte but tiny glass…Always comes in a glass with around one finger of foam.
Latte: Always in a normal glass like a Water glass…is easy to recognize…and have around 2 fingers of foam on top. The foam comes from boiled milk.
Flat White: it is the same mix as the latte but come without foam, that’s why they call FLAT…so no foam on top and it is served in a mug an not a glass.
Long Black: Served in a mug and is a black coffee with no milk
Espresso or short black: Same size than the Picollo but served in a tiny mug. is just black coffee
Mocca or mochaccino: It is like the latte but they mix chocolate with the coffee, like one spoon of chocolate and comes in a mug.
Cappuccino: comes in a mug and has the most foam with chocolate powder JUST on the top.
Babyccino: it is a mix for kids, basically is serve in the same little mug then the espresso but is just milk with chocolate
I know that if you don’t know how to do coffees you won’t remember this but it is good to have an idea at least so u know what you are serving on the table.
Well, now I think you are ready to get a few trials and start your Australian journey!!
I hope u all the best and if u have any questions just let me know
See you around mate!
PS: Sorry about the mistakes in English….still improving every day!