Good Customer Service: Fayetteville Uno

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010

With a gift card in hand, we made our way last night to the Uno Chicago Grill in Fayetteville. As most of you know, I'm not one for chains, typically. With the gift card, the money's already spent, so I don't see any benefit to not using it.

Aside: The going wisdom is that for every dollar spent at a locally owned shop, 73 cents are spent in the community. For every dollar spent at a chain, 43 cents are spent in the community. Over a large population, that's quite a boost to the local economy when the money's spent at local shops.

One thing Uno does that I like is that when he first approaches your table, the server writes his name on a napkin and places it on your table. Brian did so, and then commenced the "I'm Brian, I'll be your server routine."

Brian's first win was having the bartender pour my Sam Adams in the brewery's "Ultimate Beer Glass." He noticed the Boston hat, and commented to the positive.

But he also noticed the gift card sitting on the table, which had to scare him, because people have the bad habit of tipping on the cash they pay, not the full bill. So if we had spent $30 on food and had a $25 gift card, would he be getting a big fat $1 tip?

The other exceptional thing Brian did that I liked was when we had a half dinner salad left (we each ordered an entree and shared a dinner salad), he offered us "boxes" – not assuming we had the same destination, even though we did – and then followed up by asking if we'd prefer just one (which we did).

Another aside: I was once at a local establishment with a female friend having wings and watching a football game. "He thinks we're on a date," I told her. "Why do you say that?" she asked. "Because he's being awfully attentive to me, assuming I'm picking up the bill, and we have fresh glasses when there's still three sips in the ones we're working on while everyone else has to wait. He wants me to impress you with a big tip." She didn't believe me. We moved to a table away from the crowd at the bar when it got busy, and when he brought the bill over, he said, "I knew you just wanted to be alone."

Brian stopped me on the way out the door to talk baseball, too. Big win for the restaurant.

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