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How to Take Large Party Orders as a Waiter

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How to Take Large Party Orders as a Waiter. When you take large party orders as a waiter, organization is key. Organizing and preparing your server book first prevents a frustrating and confusing night for you and your guests. Here are some tips on how to take large party orders.

Know how to assign seat numbers to your guests. Begin at the head of the table with the number 1 (if it's a round table, pick a starting point), then move clockwise around the table and assign seat numbers to the rest of the guests.

Prepare your server book. Make a list of the seat numbers in your book. Then write guest number 1's order next to the number 1 in your book, and continue doing so as each guest orders.

Take the drink orders as your guests arrive. Many people in large parties don't arrive at the restaurant all at once. Once the guests sit, take their drink orders, writing it down in each person's corresponding seat number in your server book.

Get the ladies' orders first. Since you've already numbered the seats, it's easy to keep track of your orders even if a lady isn't sitting at the head of the table. Simply write down her order next to her corresponding seat number in your server book.

Finish with the men's orders. After you have taken orders from all the ladies at the table, move on to the men.

Tip

Organize your food and drinks on the server tray. Beginning at the head of the tray, place seat number 1's drink at the 12 o'clock position. Moving clockwise again, place the rest of the guests' drinks in order of their seat numbers. This helps to prevent confusion when serving food and drinks to large parties.

Warning

Always leave extra room under each seat number. Doing so allows you to stay neat and organized when taking orders for drinks, appetizers, salads, entrees and desserts. If you don't leave extra room, you can easily become confused as to who is having what.