Is the Tipping Culture Almost Gone?

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Photo Credit: Francesco Sapienza for The New York Times

We first saw a switch to a non-tipping system at Danny Meyer’s, The Modern back in November of 2015. Since then several other restaurants have eliminated the traditional practice of tipping such as, Huertas, Le Pigeon and Park Kitchen in Portland, Ore.; Dahlia Lounge and Canlis in Seattle; and Comal, Cala and Petit Crenn in the Bay Area. With restaurants eliminating tipping and paying their staff a salary, price increases have been seen on the menu. Huertas, a spanish tapas in the East Village has increased their octopus dish to $21 from $16 and has added an extra tentacle to the dish. By paying staff a salary now, restaurants not only have to raise menu prices but they need to manage costs in other aspects of the business. At Huertas, as mentioned above, not only did the octopus grow another leg, but the kitchen staff has gone from six cooks to four or five per shift. The Union Square Group has been purchasing in bulk and coordinating with other restaurants within the group about sharing whole animals instead of buying individual cuts. The non-tipping culture hasn’t quite caught on everywhere but it is slowly making its way. To read more about the transition click here.

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