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Oct 6, 2007 06:56 AM

Why don't servers bring me a glass for my bottled beer?

Maybe this is just an issue that bothers me more than it should. I am a middle aged woman who doesn't think that slugging beer out of a bottle in most restaurant settings is particularly ladylike. Just last night, while waiting for a table at a Mexican restaurant, DH and I ordered drinks. I ordered a bottled beer, and the server brought DH his mixed drink in a glass and then placed an open bottle of beer on the bar table in front of me. When I asked her for a glass, she seemed both surprised and annoyed, and took quite a while to return with it. I was able to see her talking at the end of the bar, so it wasn't as though she was busy. It irritated me considerably, and I ended up asking the guy who was walking around with the chips and salsa to ask her to bring me a glass. It was a full ten minutes before she returned with a frosted beer mug.

So -- I am just being picky? Or do other people out there find the sight of a grown woman knocking one back straight from the bottle a little classless in a decent restaurant? A pizza joint, maybe, but not a restaurant. I wish this was the only time it has happened, but it just seems to me that these young servers haven't been trained properly and have no sensitivity to the fact that some women just don't want to drink beer this way while in a restaurant setting. Perhaps the worst example I've ever seen of this was at a black tie dinner -- and the beautiful young woman in question just guzzled her beer right out of the bottle in her formal evening wear.

I'd love to know what CHers think about this.

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  1. Have you noticed other people in the same places being brought a glass with their bottled beers? It isn't just some women, some men don't want to drink from the bottle at times, either. Many restaurants don't automatically bring a glass with a bottle of saves time, reduces the chances of a glass being broken and so on. I don't think it has to do with being trained properly necessarily...many people are just fine drinking out a bottle no matter the setting and many times glasses that are provided with a bottle of beer go untouched. So, I expect that particular restaurant has set it's default to "no glass."

    All that said, sounds like you had a server who either wasn't on her game or whose game isn't so good. I'd say to just start ordering your beer with a glass.

    2 Replies
    1. re: ccbweb

      I have to say that in spite of this explanation, which is somewhat obvious if you think about it, I still regard drinking out of a bottle as something guys do when hanging out the local bar with their buds, versus what a lady might do at a restaurant. I'm sorry, but I don't buy the excuse that it "reduces the chance of breakage". They may be saving time and reducing their costs, but they should train their serverts to ASK if the restaurant policy is "no glass". It's sloppy, low-class service otherwise, no matter how you justify it.

      1. re: RGC1982

        I also feel uncomfortable drinking out of a bottle - of any kind. May go back to my mother exclaiming "I feel like a slut" when she had to drink her coke out of a bottle in the car, because there were no straws or cups to be had! My husband recently bought me a bottle of water at the U.S. Open and the person working at the concession stand refused to give him a cup, even after he implored "It's for my wife. How is she supposed to drink it?" (and this reflected his sentiments as much as mine). And no cup even though that bottle of water was the most expensive bottle he's ever bought!

    2. I prefer to drink from a glass as well and was recently a bit annoyed when a favorite restaurant neglected to even offer me a glass. I can understand that some people prefer to drink right out of the bottle, but any restaurant other than a taco stand or equally ultra-casual environment should offer a glass and bring it promptly if requested

      1. I'm torn on this one.

        On one hand, it's beer; it comes in a bottle. If you're drinking a bottle of beer, it's probably not the most "ladylike" drink to begin with.

        However, fine wine also comes in a bottle and you use a glass for that.

        In my opinion, the best way to ensure you get a glass is simply to ask for one when you order your beer.

        10 Replies
        1. re: invinotheresverde

          I'm a man and I prefer a glass too. I mostly like the microbrews and it really helps to have a glass to truly enjoy the beer. If it were a coors light I wouldn't care about a glass.

          1. re: Rick

            Agreed. A good beer goes in a glass. A Bud Lite goes in your mouth (or better yet, the trash).


          2. re: invinotheresverde

            Hold on -- are you trying to say that I should have ordered a fruit-flavored cocktail with an umbrella in it because I am female? Sorry, Mexican beer is the perfect compliment to Mexican food. In fact, I rarely drink beer and only do so when it goes well with the food I am about to eat. I don't buy the idea that beer isn't a drink for women. It's almost as though you are implying that I should expect this behavior from my servers for choosing beer to begin with. I hope that is not what you really mean :) You seem much more evolved than that!

            1. re: RGC1982

              RGC, I think you should drink whatever you prefer to drink. I definitely don't think beer isn't something a woman can enjoy; I love small-batch porters and stouts myself.

              I DO think it's comical when someone wants a glass to go with his/her American Lager du Jour. Really, is that glass going to enhance the (lack of) flavor? Will it make the drinker feel more sophisticated? If someone asked me for a bottled beer, I wouldn't assume he/she wanted a glass unless one was asked for.

              I guess that's not for me to understand, as I'd never drink that crap. :) Plenty of people do, though. And I suppose if they want to drink it out of a glass, they have every right to- they just need to ask for one.

              1. re: invinotheresverde

                oh well you and jfood did have a run at agreement yesterday, but now back to differing opinions. Whether it's a male or female serving a bottle should always be accompanied by a glass. The choice of use is up to the custo. And really you're kidding on making that distinction.

                That's like, in your line of work, bringing a juice glass for certain bottles of wine and fine crystal for others. jfood assumes that you give the appropriate wine glasses for everyone who orders, irrespective of pricepoint or your opinion.

                BTW - be careful that the shoe laces don;t get snagged on the bi-cuspids on the way out. ouch.

                1. re: jfood

                  yowsa, jfood. you give bourdain a run for the money on certain snark factors. lol.
                  glasses forever! yes!

                  1. re: alkapal

                    not snarky at all, jfood and verde have a mutual respect in their disagreements.

                  2. re: jfood

                    Serving a glass without being asked for one is against many restaurants' policies, mine included.

                    I assure you, I'm not suffering from any foot-in-mouth right now.

                2. re: RGC1982

                  Hope you're not referring to me but if you are, your post seems to imply that men drink out of bottles and women should drink out of glasses. Was just stating that as a man, I prefer a glass to a bottle.

                  1. re: Rick

                    Agreed - my husband also prefers a glass.

              2. funny, I always wonder why on earth waiters bring me a glass. I'd rather drink from the bottle ;-) That said, the places I order bottled beed, it would be fine to see a grown woman drinking from a bottle (I refuse to call myself middle-aged though I am 39)

                1. I prefer to drink out of a glass in restaurants, but from the bottle at a bar. If you want a glass, ask for one, but the server shouldn't take 10 minutes to bring it to you! That's just bad service. Having said that, I don't find drinking out of a frosty mug any more ladylike than swigging from a bottle! Just a regular glass is fine.