Upselling or Overkill?

On Christmas eve, I visited a popular seafood restaurant in Mumbai along with friends. Known for its popular seafood dishes and fresh fruits de mer, we were  looking forward to a culinary delight. What irked me however was the intention to upsell amongst all service staff. Right from the beginning, from the order for mineral water to the starters and the main course through dessert, there were a plethora of upselling techniques being used. Dishes not on the menu were being recommended, tiger prawns instead of king prawns were recommended, the catch of the day was shoved into our faces and so the evening wore on…

While the meal was a delight, the upselling did leave a poor taste in my mouth and this was aggravated when the basics of service were not being followed (e.g. ladies were not being served first on the table).

Where does operational training draw a line? Is it not more important for the service staff to know how to please a guest rather than killing the golden goose? I for one will not want to go to this restaurant again!

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