Article posted Wednesday, August 17, 2011 3:32pm

Dear Miss Manners,

I recently met up with some of my girlfriends to catch up over drinks at one of Door County’s “nicer” establishments. We’re all crazy busy this time of year, and we were very much looking forward to relaxing and chatting in a bit of a slower-paced atmosphere. The first bottle of wine was emptied over pleasant conversation and as our glasses sat empty we continued to chat. When the bartender finally came over after a good ten minutes, his question wasn’t would you like another bottle of wine but: “Would you like more water?”

It was very obvious to us that he wanted his shift to be done for the night, and rather than offer us a second bottle of wine (of which he would have been tipped accordingly) he proceeded to push us out the door. Maybe because we’re not tourists but “locals” we took it a little more personally than we should on this mid-August evening, but seriously…bad service, bad manners or just bad attitude?

One Bottle Wonder

Baileys Harbor, WI

Dear One Bottle Wonder,

I’d have to say it’s bad service, bad manners AND a bad attitude. Since you and your friends are local, you probably work with the public in some capacity, and we all know that can be difficult at times. Even when our visitors are pleasant and friendly (which thankfully most of them are), by mid-August, we all start to feel a little bit tired. When you work 40 to 70 hours a week, plus try to have a social life, it can be a bit much. The trick is, you can’t let that show. A lot of us make our living on tourism and need to have a wine glass half full attitude.

Mr. Bartender Man should have used the opportunity of some (presumably?) fabulous local women to be ambassadors for the restaurant that provides him with a paycheck. Wouldn’t it be better if you and your friends were like: “We had an amazing bottle of wine at Chez Restaurant, and now we’re going to tell other people to go there.” Instead of: “I’ll never go back there again!” If the sign is marked OPEN, then this bartender should have acted like the sign said, OPEN FOR BUSINESS!!

The restaurant business is tough, especially at higher end establishments. When people tighten their belts, one of the first things to go is dining out. Fast forward to next winter when this bartender will be lucky to see six people sitting at his bar any given night. My bet is that he would really appreciate a customer buying a second bottle of wine.

Good luck,

Mary Pat