HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >

Discussion

Question About Bartender Behavior

  • 63
  • Share

Greetings:

About two months ago I returned to the local restaurant and bar scene after an absence of nearly five years. During this time I have catching up on the latest culinary trends in my area. Since my return, however, I have noticed something curious about the practice of the bar staff at one particular restaurant and pub.

Wherever I dine, I always like to eat at the bar and enjoy two martinis with my meal. Everything went fine during my first three visits to this particular restaurant. The food was good and the martinis were well made.

During my last two visits, however, I noticed something which strikes me as a bit odd. My first martini was served in a classic martini glass. But my second martini was served in what appeared to be a smaller martini glass with an entirely different shape.

This did not happen during my first three visits, during which my second martini was served in the same sized martini glass as the first. This has only happened during my last two visits, and by two different bartenders, I might add.

I didn't say anything, although I know I should have. But this change of behavior makes me wonder if I was being "profiled" to see how I would react to the different martini glass for my second martini.

Due to the smaller volume of the second martini glass, this makes me further wonder if this was a ploy to get me to order a third martini. Sure enough, during both of these two recent visits, I was asked if I wanted a third martini. I declined. I felt like I was being manipulated.

I was not asked if I wanted a third martini during my first three visits when my second martini was served in the same sized glass as my first. This only started to happen during my last two visits.

When this happened the first time, I attributed it to the possibility that they ran out of standard sized martini glasses. But when it happened the second time, I began to get suspicious. By the way, I have been to some bars where they pour your second martini in the same glass as the first. So a possible glass shortage is no excuse.

Since my return to dining out, none of the other bars and restaurants I have visited have engaged in this practice. Only this one.

Am I being a little paranoid about my suspicions above? Or is this a behavior that is actually practiced by some bartenders? Just curious. Once again, I had been away from the restaurant and bar scene for almost five years.

All The Best,

PP

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
Posting Guidelines | FAQs | Feedback
Cancel
  1. Based on your account, the actions may be carried out by the bartenders...however, it seems to me it's more about policy set by the house and they are merely following instructions....it not about their behavior.... which would suggest they have a personal motive to do so based on bias, which I do not see happening from your account provided.

    Edit: for the record....rather than be suspicious of the Martini pour.....I would be more suspect of your treatment after repeated visits.

    2 Replies
    1. re: fourunder

      Hello fourunder,

      Many thanks for your comments. The "house policy" theory for the change of glass type for my second martini sounds very plausible. This would help to explain why two entirely different bartenders served my second martini in a different and smaller glass during my last two visits.

      My question is..........why? They didn't do this during my first three visits. They only did this during my last two visits. Why the change?

      This is what made me suspect that I was "profiled." By serving me the second martini in a smaller glass, I might be more likely to order a third. Sure enough, they did ask me if I wanted a third during my last two visits. They did not do so during my first three visits, when both of my martinis were served in the same type of conical martini glass.

      My next visit to this bar and restaurant will determine whether or not I am going to become a regular customer. If not, it will not be a great loss, as I have found two other restaurants I like better. I have been going to this particular one because I can walk there in ten minutes and I do like their Shrimp Diablo.

      All The Best,

      PP

      1. re: PontiusPalate

        how about just specifying which glass you want them to use for all your martinis BEFORE they get started on their magic act?

        sometimes being unemotional and direct simplifies things.
        (i.e. i've walked out of restaurants when they didn't have either of my two favorite salad dressings on hand. this was not an emotional thing.
        i am there in the first place to buy a particular item. i order the item specifically. if they can't deliver the item they need to tell me up front.

    2. Could you say more about the size and shape of the second glass? Are you sure it's smaller (you said "appeared to be", so some uncertainty maybe)? And how is its shape entirely different from the first glass? I thought martini glasses all had sort of the same shape.

      Since you're on your way to becoming a regular at this place, I would just ask them. "What's up with the different glasses? This one looks smaller than the other one."

      One more question: Do they measure the liquor into the shaker or just eyeball it?

      13 Replies
      1. re: DeppityDawg

        Depp - I've had them in all kind of glasses so I say volume can be easily mistaken "objects in the glass may be..."

        seriously, what looks far smaller may be the same and vice versa

        if you're ticked ask for a different glass. YOU are the customer.

        1. re: DeppityDawg

          Hello DeppityDawg,

          The first martini has been served in the standard conical shaped glass. The second one has been served in a glass which can be described as having a miniature "bird bath" shape.

          I was able to find a picture that is a very close approximation to that second martini glass. In fact, it might be identical. It is called a "bella cocktail glass."

          http://www.thisnext.com/item/EBE2C956...

          I always sip my martinis slowly and at about the same rate of speed. Based upon the shorter length of time it took me to sip and finish those second martinis during my last two visits, I feel reasonably certain that its volume is less than that of the standard conical shaped martini glass.

          Speaking of volume, bartenders can also vary the amount of liquor in the glass according to how close they fill it to the rim. One restaurant in particular always fills my martinis to the absolute rim, so much so that I have to bend over and make the first few slips with my lips alone before I am able to pick it up with my hand.

          To answer your last question, the bartenders have been "eyeballing" the liquor into the shakers instead of measuring it. This is standard practice among the bartenders in my area.

          When I return to this restaurant for my next visit, I do plan to request the standard conical shaped martini glass for my second martini. My first martini at this restaurant has always been served in this type of glass. All they have to do is pour my second martini in the same glass as my first.

          If they express a problem with that, I probably won't return. It won't be a great loss, as I have found two restaurants in my area that I like better. I am still in the process of sampling all of our local restaurants, in order to determine which ones will and will not earn a permanent place on my dining repertoire.

          I have already scratched one restaurant off my list after I caught the bartender squirting soda water in my martini in order to make it look fuller. The food was subpar as well.

          All The Best,

          PP

          1. re: PontiusPalate

            Soda water? How strange. How did they explain that when you confronted them?

            I hope you'll keep us posted about your next visit. I'm still leaning towards calling you paranoid about being profiled, but stranger things have happened… It would be nice to get to the bottom of this.

            1. re: PontiusPalate

              The glass you were served in is called a Coupe. Actually, many of them are in the 5.5 oz. range, while many "martini" cocktail glasses are in the 6.5 or 7.5 oz. range.

              But as said by others, it is very difficult to judge capacity by eye. I brought in over a dozen 6.5 oz. cocktail glasses in varying styles/shapes for my bartenders to check out. None could figure out by eye that they all held the same.

              1. re: JMF

                Coupes and cocktail glasses come in all sizes and shapes. Where I work, our coupes come in two sizes -- one larger than the cocktail glasses (for doing drinks with a champagne float) and one smaller (for doing special things like barrel-aged/expensive ingredient cocktails to keep the price more affordable). I'd say the smaller one would be perfect for a 3 to 3.5 oz drink then shaken or stirred (so 4.5 oz?) whereas the bigger one is probably closer to 7-8 oz final.

                Consistency of technique -- including glassware -- is important. I remember serving one woman her spirits-on-the-rocks in a double old fashioned (I did this because she asked for a side of mixer that I thought she might add on her own). Later, her husband joined her and he got his spirits-on-the-rocks in a single old fashioned (standard glassware for the order). He thought he was being cheated despite both pours being jiggered. I never made that mistake again.

                http://cocktailvirgin.blogspot.com

                1. re: yarm

                  I agree about consistency of glassware. I assign a specific glass to each cocktail. Sadly, until the restaurants I work with get bar dishwashers I have to stay with durable glassware and so am limited as to choice.

                2. re: JMF

                  Hello JMF,

                  Many thanks for the information. This is good to know.

                  I have also noted that the traditional conical shaped martini glasses also vary in size. The ones used for my first martinis at the bar and restaurant I have been describing have been among the larger ones I have ever seen, which makes me believe that they are probably in the 6.5 to 7.5 ounce range.

                  It would be interesting to find out if the "coupe" style cocktail glasses used at this restaurant, which have been used for my second martinis, are in the 5.5 ounce size range which you mentioned.

                  PP

                  1. re: PontiusPalate

                    Regardless of the size of the glass....the pour really should not be expected to more than 4-5 ounces.....3 for the liquor, some vermouth and accounting for melted ice.

                    While most places fill to the rim....that's not really how a cocktail should be presented. The House certainly can determine what their specifications are for any drink....The places I frequent tend to over pour for me...

                    1. re: fourunder

                      A cocktail that has 3.5-4 oz. of liquid ingredients will be apx. 6-6.5 oz. after dilution from shaking or stirring.

                      1. re: JMF

                        It depends on who's making them, the size of the glass used and the how long the cocktail is allowed to chill, no? If a 4.5 ounce glass is used, like the typical Libby or Anchor glassware popular in most dives, pubs or taverns ...it would be pretty tough to prevent overflow.

                        If someone made me a drink with a pour of 3.5 ounces of liquid.....and it ended up being 6-6.5 ounces finished....I would consider that a poorly made cocktail and watered down

                        1. re: fourunder

                          I should have been more precise and said 3.75-4.25 oz. initial and 5.5-6 oz. final, in my prior post. It depends a little on the amount and strength of alcohol or juices used as they dilute differently.

                          Actually, even using different ice, as long as it isn't sopping wet, 4 oz. liquid, in an ice filled shaker or mixing glass, will result in a final pour that is around 5.5-6 oz. If the cocktail is stirred for 25-35 seconds, or shaken for 12-17 seconds. A cocktail needs those times to hit stasis as to full chilling and dilution. Anything under that and the cocktail won't be fully chilled and won't have reached the required dilution. Anything over that... and there is no change since it is a equilibrium, unless a large amount of time goes by, like several minutes.

                          When I create my cocktails for restaurants and bars I aim for around 3.75-4.25 oz. total liquid before dilution if it is going to be served in a 6.5 oz. cocktail glass. These are not watered down cocktails, but well made in many cases, strong.

                          An example is a traditional martini of 2 oz. gin, 3/4 oz. vermouth, and a dash or two of orange bitters (using 1/8th tsp. as a dash.) That is between 3.75 and 4 oz., and after a nice stir it fills a glass to just under the rim.

                          Although a serving of sangria made with half wine and half liqueurs and juices will be 4.75 oz. initial amount and 6 oz. final amount. I just spent a few days creating a sangria list for two restaurants last week.

                    2. re: PontiusPalate

                      Actually the 6.5-7.5 oz. conical "martini" cocktail glasses are at the smaller end of the size spectrum...

                      Coupes are also available in many sizes, although not the ones I need.

                  2. re: PontiusPalate

                    the second glass looked like a coupe to me, normally used for serving sparkling wines.
                    maybe my eyes are going.

                3. we, as humans, are actually really bad at assessing volume. I worked at a restaurant years ago that used to serve a few drinks in hurricane glasses. When we ran out we'd have to use "regular" looking glasses. 100% of the time the customer would say "hey, this glass is so much smaller". We'd always bring over a hurricane full of water and pour it into the size glass they had to show that they were the same volume - I think they still thought we were pulling some fast one on them even after we demonstrated they were the same volume.

                  So, even though they look different, they may actually hold the same amount. Ask or next time order your second while you are still finishing your first and pour it in yourself to find out.

                  11 Replies
                  1. re: thimes

                    I think the right thing to do, as a bartender, is to anticipate the customer's puzzlement and suspicion. Don't just switch glassware on them with no explanation and wait for them to bring it up. A lot of people in the OP's situation will be reluctant to say anything, because it sounds like an accusation and they are afraid to come off as whiny or paranoid, but it is a totally legitimate concern. If I were the bartender, I'd say "Sorry, we're out of those glasses, and I'm not allowed to reuse your empty glass. Is it OK if I use this other kind, which holds the same amount? I know, it looks smaller, everyone thinks so, but I promise you, we would never cheat our customers in such an obvious way. We are a lot sneakier than that, rest assured."

                    Aside from the volume thing, I would just want my martini in a martini glass. It doesn't seem like a martini if it's served in a birdbath glass!

                    1. re: DeppityDawg

                      Hello DeppityDawg,

                      Your comments really hit home for me. I have also been reluctant to say anything to the bar staff about the change in glassware, out of fear that I will be perceived as paranoid and a difficult customer. I enjoy a couple of martinis with meal to enhance the enjoyment of my dining experience. The last thing I want to do is to dampen the experience for both my servers and myself.

                      I also share your sentiment that a martini is best served in a traditional conical shaped martini glass. Having a martini served in a "birdbath" style glass, or any other type of glass, just isn't the same.

                      Do some bars have an actual "house rule" against serving a second martini or cocktail in the same glass as the first? If so, then most of the other bars in my area don't follow this same rule.

                      Last night, for example, I ate at a restaurant where the bartender simply poured my second martini in the same empty glass which housed my first. This practice seems to be the "norm" for most of the restaurants and bars I have been visiting lately.

                      The bar and restaurant I have been describing in this discussion thread is one of the exceptions.

                      PP

                      1. re: PontiusPalate

                        There is no rule, or code that says a second pour cannot be made into the same glass....it should not be confused with a refill on a soda or a second trip to the buffet.

                        Most times when a bartender cites a policy, it's not by stature, but house policy....it does not mean it need to enforced absolutely, but by discretion to protect the staff and house....an example would be the often used rule of children not allowed to sit at the bar due to insurance...or other.

                        1. re: PontiusPalate

                          I totally made up that part about not being allowed to reuse the same glass. Since you'd mentioned that option earlier, I wanted to slip it into my imaginary conversation, just so it would be addressed. I've never actually come across a bar where it was disallowed, but I wouldn't be surprised if some places actually do have that policy. It would be like always taking a new plate for each trip to the buffet line, etc., which some places require and some don't.

                          1. re: DeppityDawg

                            In the bars and restaurants where I consult I insist on a new glass for each cocktail. I would have some feedback for my bartenders if they re-used a glass. We use pre-chilled glasses and I want every cocktail to be perfect as to temperature.

                            1. re: JMF

                              What's your position on bottle beer service? I used to work for a top caterer who insisted beer always be poured into a glass at events....I don't like my beer flat...so I prefer straight out of the bottle myself....it the reason why I do not generally drink Keg beer....

                              1. re: fourunder

                                I almost always drink my beer from a glass or cup, but I tend to drink finely crafted beer. I also don't like overly carbonated beverages in general. But if playing sports or at the beach on a steamy day. Well that's different. Cheap, tasteless, commercial beer should be drunk ice cold, from the can or bottle, so all you get is refreshing cold liquid and a buzz, and no taste. A good beer tastes better at 60 F. A bad beer tastes terrible at 60 F. and needs to be barely above freezing.

                                I think that beer should be served in a glass unless a customer requests not to. If someone wants to drink beer from a bottle I think that is fine unless they are seated at a table in a decent restaurant, or in a fine bar. Then it should be drunk out of a glass.

                                I feel beer is better served from a glass, it should be poured so that there is a nice 1/2-3/4" head of foam so that the flavors get released and the carbonation goes down a bit so that it can be tasted more easily. The glass should be wet with water on the inside before pouring to help prevent foaming.

                              2. re: JMF

                                Oh yes, by default, a new glass each time. I was imagining a situation like those described earlier where for some reason you were forced to choose between using a new, "wrong" glass or reusing the old one (if the customer is OK with that).

                                1. re: DeppityDawg

                                  If you need to re-use a glass, then it should be washed first if at all possible. I think all bars, for rinsing out or wetting down beer glasses, and for washing cocktail shakers, should have bar rinsers. Those are the bar mounted gadgets that you place an inverted glass on and sprays the inside with cold water.

                                  If a beer is served in the wrong glass the next order should be served in the correct glass. If the correct glass is smaller, then you explain that a mistake was made, and that you will still charge the normal price for the over serve. Usually when a beer is served in a smaller glass it is very strong, and/or expensive.

                        2. re: thimes

                          Agreed on this. I own a couple of Riedel stemless wine glasses that I was very surprised to learn could in fact contain an entire bottle of wine if I chose to try. This, despite the fact that each glass is probably 1/3 of the height of a wine bottle and not seemingly especially wide. Varying glass thickness, etc, makes a huge difference and it's incredibly tough to eyeball it.

                          1. re: davis_sq_pro

                            My favorite was the restaurant here that charged $2 more for a bowl then a mug of soup. You guessed it, the exact same size, by liquid measure. Which is why I no longer order a bowl if a mug is available.

                            Yep, the place went under in a couple of years.

                        3. I'll admit, it's strange, but I kind of doubt that it's a ploy to get you to order a third Martini. Or at least, it doesn't seem like a very good ploy.

                          It just seems strange since, considering that if the glass is a different size and not just a different shape, there can't be more than an ounce or so difference between them. And drinking an ounce less isn't exactly going to make a person order a whole extra drink. I'd think if that's the plan they'd just make both Martinis smaller. Especially since then there wouldn't be a clear difference in size between the first and second one.

                          Maybe it's just a coincidence that this happened twice? Or maybe they're just trying to save themselves some gin on the second one?

                          I don't know, it seems strange either way. I'd be curious to hear what happens next time. I don't think there's any harm in asking, though.

                          19 Replies
                          1. re: A_Gonzalez

                            Hello A_Gonzalez,

                            Many thanks for your comments. You raise a good point. It certainly seems like it would be an easy task to make the first and second martinis on the weak side as a more reliable and more covert means of inducing a customer to order a third.

                            So maybe it was a coincidence that they switched me to the "birdbath" style cocktail glass for my second martini during my last two visits. I will be going back to this restaurant in a few days to investigate this even further.

                            If they prepare my second martini in the same kind of glass as my first, in the traditional conical shaped glass that I prefer, then I will chalk it up to coincidence. But if they prepare it in the "birdbath" style glass again that I described earlier, then I will probably continue to be suspicious. If this happens again, I will certainly ask them about this.

                            This is one reason why I like to eat at the bar. It enables me to observe and study the techniques that different bartenders use to mix and prepare their drinks.

                            I have another personal observation to make about most of the other bars who have been preparing both of my martinis in the same conical shaped glass. Specifically, my second martini is almost always stronger than my first. On those few occasions when I have actually ordered a third martini, which is something I haven't done in years, it has almost always weaker than the first.

                            I certainly can't fault a bartender for making the third martini weaker than the first two. It is my impression that most bartenders become suspicious of any customer who orders a third martini. Two martinis is enough.

                            All The Best,

                            PP

                            1. re: PontiusPalate

                              Two martinis is enough.
                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                              We have different drinking/consumption opinions....

                              1. re: fourunder

                                Agreed. Based upon past experience, a third martini almost always results in "diminishing returns" and a feeling of regret the next day.

                                PP

                                1. re: PontiusPalate

                                  I've been known to open a bar and close it in the same seating......but many more times the change in shift.

                                  1. re: fourunder

                                    I've been known to open and close a bar in the same seating as well. Although it depends upon opening and closing times... :-)>

                                    1. re: JMF

                                      Mine is into the next day, i.e., after midnight.

                                      1. re: fourunder

                                        Some bars in my area open at 10 am and close at 4am. Never did an opening and closing like that. But I have spent 10-12 hours in a bar when I was a kid in my teens ans 20's. Lately it's more like 3-4 hours. Except when working and evaluating bartenders. Then I may spend from opening to close, but that's from 4-6 pm to 11 pm.

                                        1. re: JMF

                                          Just so there's no confusion.....I meant as a patron, not working.

                                          :0)

                                          1. re: fourunder

                                            When working... I get to drink for free... and have to check quality and consistency. That means again and again and again. Taxis are great.

                                2. re: fourunder

                                  I've found there's a very fine line between 2 and 6 martinis...

                                  1. re: hill food

                                    Wherever that line rests.....I'm sure Ive crossed it.

                                    1. re: fourunder

                                      Line... there ain't no stinkin' line! ;-)>

                                3. re: PontiusPalate

                                  A good bar and bartender measures each drink and makes them the exact same for consistency and quality. The same drink should never be stronger or weaker, always the same.

                                  1. re: JMF

                                    that's what my bartender does.

                                  2. re: PontiusPalate

                                    Hmm, I think I would definitely fault a bartender for making my drinks weaker and weaker because they figured I'd had enough… In appropriate circumstances, a bartender can stop serving someone alcohol altogether, but if they agree to serve a drink and accept payment for it, they need to make it according to the normal recipe.

                                    In other words, what JMF said. Although I wouldn't necessarily complain if a drink came out stronger than normal (the bar owner might, though…)

                                  3. re: A_Gonzalez

                                    Hello,

                                    I take one thing back. I actually did have a third martini (sort of) about a couple of weeks ago.

                                    After finishing my second martini, at a bar which always makes them in the same sized conical glasses I like, the bartender asked me if I liked whiskey. I told her that it had been so long since I tasted whiskey that I had just about forgotten what it tasted like.

                                    She told me that she was learning how to make a new whiskey cocktail and asked me if I would be willing to try one "on the house." So I decided to give one a try.

                                    The drink she prepared is called a "Mile High Manhattan" and it was served in the same style of martini glass as my first two. It was actually very good and I decided to order a bread pudding dessert to go with it. But I don't think I will order one again any time soon.

                                    I looked up a recipe for this drink. The recipe I found calls for 4 parts of Makers Mark bourbon, 1 part of Navan Vanilla Liqueur, 1 part of Grand Marnier, and a few drops of anise flavored liqueur.

                                    PP

                                    1. re: PontiusPalate

                                      The "Mile High Manhattan" Could be almost anything. Some places use a similar name for a different drink. In Denver there is a "Mile High Manhattan" that is 3oz. of Stranhan's Whiskey, 1/3 oz Lillet Rouge, 1/2 oz.Leopold Bros. New York Apple Whiskey, and a dash of Peychaud's bitters.

                                      1. re: JMF

                                        Interesting. I did ask the bartender what was in this drink, and she did mention the Makers Mark, Grand Marnier, and the vanilla liqueur. I don't think she mentioned the anise.

                                        PP

                                        1. re: PontiusPalate

                                          There is a commonly known drink called the "Mile High Manhattan" which is like you say, and it isn't anise, but absinthe, although they are similar in flavor profile to some extent.

                                  4. I wouldn't think you were being profiled by anyone and my bet is that they've bought new glassware to replace the old stuff (the traditional martini glass is probably on of the easiest glasses in the house to break) and they're probably using both old and new at the same time.
                                    As someone else pointed out, it's real easy to misjudge the amount of liquid in different glasses - a real issue with wine service by the glass. That's why many restaurants bring a small carafe of wine to the table and then pour it in the glass - so the customer can "see" for themselves that it was an appropriate pour.
                                    That being said, I think I'd be a bit put out if my second drink of any kind was in a different type of glass as the first. It just doesn't feel right. This recently happened with a 2nd beer of the same kind. 1st was in a pint glass and 2nd in a 10 oz glass. When I questioned this, the response was that the 1st should have also been in the smaller glass. I don't know if it was a BS response but it was quick thinking which at some level I appreciate.
                                    Back in my multiple martini days, the 2nd, 3rd and so on were usually poured in my original glass - I was able to keep track of my intake based on the number of olives in the glass.

                                    10 Replies
                                    1. re: bobbert

                                      Hello bobbert,

                                      Many thanks for your comments.

                                      It had never occurred to me that the rationale for the different glass for my second martini could possibly be due to a transition to a new set of glassware. In any event, I agree with you that having my second martini served in a different type of glass just doesn't feel right.

                                      If this happens again, I just might mention that I prefer the traditional conical shaped glass, because they are easier for me to hold, and not mention any of my lingering suspicions about the volume. Indeed, I have found the coupe "birdbath" style glasses a bit awkward to hold. Maybe I'm just not used to them yet.

                                      By the way, my current martini of choice is a Hendricks gin martini, up and completely dry, with one or more cucumber slices. In the past, I used to prefer a Bombay Sapphire gin martini with a lemon twist, or if available, a slice of pickled ginger. I have never been a fan of olives in my martinis.

                                      All The Best,

                                      PP

                                      1. re: PontiusPalate

                                        PP- Your preferred recipe might be relevant.

                                        Your "completely dry" Martini might better be considered a chilled glass of gin. The bartender may have served it in a coupe because a) without a reasonable amount of vermouth the standard Martini gin pour might not fill the conical glass and/or b) a straight spirit order might best be served in a coupe.

                                        Perhaps this occurred to him/her after he/she already made your first one?

                                        --
                                        www.kindredcocktails.com | Craft + Collect + Concoct + Categorize + Community

                                        1. re: EvergreenDan

                                          Greetings EvergreenDan:

                                          Many thanks for the thought and theory you have expressed. I never thought of this.

                                          In any event, as shown by my latest reply to bobbert, I believe the mystery has been solved to my satisfaction and I now consider this matter as a "case closed."

                                          Thanks again!

                                          PP

                                      2. re: bobbert

                                        I think that may be very valid about transitioning to new glassware. But, I want PP to ASK what size glasses, and Why...?

                                        (Just being nosey)

                                        1. re: bobbert

                                          Hello bobbert,

                                          The case of the mysterious second martini glass was really getting to me earlier today. So, I decided to go back out to this restaurant this evening, with the goal in mind to make more sense out of this mystery.

                                          I now think I have succeeded in doing so.

                                          When walking up to this restaurant, I first observed the drinking glasses used by the patrons sitting outside at the patio area. A number of them were using the same "birdbath" style cocktail glasses I complained about earlier. None of them were using the traditional conical shaped martini glasses.

                                          I walked inside, sat down at the bar, and ordered my usual Hendricks gin martini with the cucumber slices. This time my first martini arrived in the "birdbath" shaped martini glass I had been complaining about.

                                          After ordering my usual appetizer, which is a hot pretzel with mustard, I ordered my second martini and my entree, which was the Shrimp Diablo. My second martini arrived in the same "birdbath" style glass as my first.

                                          Good! I felt okay with this. Although I still prefer the traditional conical shaped martini glasses, I was glad to see some consistency with the martini glasses used for my usual two martinis.

                                          I looked around and around the bar and restaurant area, and I could not find one single customer who was drinking out of the traditional conical shaped martini glasses I enjoyed during my previous visits.

                                          This leads me to believe that your theory was correct after all -- that this restaurant was most very likely making a transition to a different set of glassware during my previous two visits.

                                          I have now concluded that my suspicions about being "manipulated" into a third martini with a smaller looking glass for my second martini were false.

                                          In addition, I have also concluded that any difference in the volume of the traditional conical shaped martini glass and the "birdbath" style glass were only neglibible at best.

                                          In retrospect, assuming I am correct on all of the above, I do believe that the bar staff should have advised me of the transition to new glassware when they served my second martini in a different glass during my previous two visits. This would have allayed my suspicions of being profiled and manipulated.

                                          But it didn't happen.

                                          In any event, based upon my observations of this evening's visit, it appears that the transition to the new glassware has been completed.

                                          Both of my martinis this evening were very well made. I was a happy camper.

                                          I now consider this case closed.

                                          Thanks again for your input.

                                          All The Best,

                                          PP

                                          1. re: PontiusPalate

                                            Please, they are not "birdbath" glasses, but are called coupes. they were originally a champagne glass. But now are sought after for many cocktails.

                                            1. re: JMF

                                              Hello JMF,

                                              Thank you very much for the correction.

                                              I had a mental block while trying to think of the "coupes" name earlier this evening. All I could think of was the word "birdbath" to describe them.

                                              I will make a concerted effort to etch the "coupes" name more firmly in my memory. I certainly don't want to sound ignorant if I have the occasion to discuss glassware with the bar staff of any particular establishment in the future.

                                              Thanks again!

                                              PP

                                              1. re: PontiusPalate

                                                I meant coupe as singular, coupes plural. We must be precise. ;-)>

                                              2. re: JMF

                                                Agreed. We should be faithful to the legend and call them "breast-shaped" glasses.

                                                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champagn...

                                              3. re: PontiusPalate

                                                Wait a minute. I was right about something? My wife has to see this... "HONEY! Come quick."

                                            2. Here are two articles from the Wall Street Journal about coupe glasses--the first about those who collect them and the second about how new versions have become "stylish"--so maybe you were engulfed by "stylishness." I use a Riedel Sommelier martini glass--
                                              1) http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001...

                                              2)http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001...

                                              Key quote: "In the past year, Mr. Boehm has introduced coupe glasses, also known as Champagne saucers, which are turning up regularly in craft cocktail bars. Useful for minimizing spills, they are a retro alternative to V-shaped martini glasses. Mr. Boehm says he started out selling them in boxes of 24 and now offers six-packs for the at-home customer."

                                              1. can't talk to your question, but, i can say that i would not be willing to accept what appears to be a smaller martini at ANY of the places i frequent be it the first martini or the second martini.

                                                of course, none of my favs play switcheroo with the glasses in the first place.. . .

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: westsidegal

                                                  WSG - Switcheroo is my new stray dog's name!

                                                  I gotta say my all time favorite place for martini's still used the 1950's size, tiny glasses - was still a good deal for his prices.

                                                  sadly the owner died and the new ones have been trying to keep it going but have gone to "supersizing" glasses. and prices.

                                                  my age of indolence is so long gone.