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It’s my understanding that HAL has eliminated wine stewards from the MDR.  Does anyone know if this also applies to specialty restaurants?

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5 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

It’s my understanding that HAL has eliminated wine stewards from the MDR.  Does anyone know if this also applies to specialty restaurants?

Say it isn't so!!  This makes no sense.  They seem to do very well selling the wine packages.  With the Alaska sailings starting soon, we will soon know.  We have four cruises booked for 2022(1 Princess, 3 HAL).   I understand there will be changes when cruising resumes, but, our cruising days may be over.  If so, it has been a very good run.

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9 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

It’s my understanding that HAL has eliminated wine stewards from the MDR.  Does anyone know if this also applies to specialty restaurants?

On our Dec, 2019 cruise wine by the glass was served by the MDR stewards, but wine stewards still did the bottle service.  There was a wine steward in the Pinnacle and Tamarind dining areas.

 

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16 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

It’s my understanding that HAL has eliminated wine stewards from the MDR.  Does anyone know if this also applies to specialty restaurants?

 

I heard the same thing, Kirk but I think it is temporary not permanent?

 

At least, I hope it’s not permanent.  🤞 

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Where did you hear that wine stewards were gone from the MDR? We were on the Oosterdam from February 29 - March 8 2020....2nd to last cruise before the shutdown, and we had Charm as our wine steward in the MDR.

 

L.

 

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10 minutes ago, kazu said:

 

I heard the same thing, Kirk but I think it is temporary not permanent?

 

At least, I hope it’s not permanent.  🤞 

I believe it’s permanent as several wine stewards have told us on FB that they are trying to get jobs as baristas instead.  Also we were told by one of the waiters on FB.  Not sure if they will have “runners” to fetch bottles but the wine steward position is no more.  Not sure if it applies to Pinnacle and/or Tamarind.

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12 minutes ago, leerathje said:

Where did you hear that wine stewards were gone from the MDR? We were on the Oosterdam from February 29 - March 8 2020....2nd to last cruise before the shutdown, and we had Charm as our wine steward in the MDR.

 

L.

 

Nothing pre-Covid can predict post Covid.

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Just now, madera1 said:

I heard the same from a Sommelier on Facebook 

I am not sure if the Sommeliers will still be onboard.  I guess to do the wine tastings?  I hope they will be as I have grown fond of Jacques.

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8 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

I believe it’s permanent as several wine stewards have told us on FB that they are trying to get jobs as baristas instead.  Also we were told by one of the waiters on FB.  Not sure if they will have “runners” to fetch bottles but the wine steward position is no more.  Not sure if it applies to Pinnacle and/or Tamarind.

 

So much for advice and information on wines on board.  Sheesh.

As much as I would like to think the PG/Tamarind will have wine stewards it doesn’t make a lot of sense unless they have other jobs on board.

 

that’s disappointing if it is permanent.

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10 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

I am not sure if the Sommeliers will still be onboard.  I guess to do the wine tastings?  I hope they will be as I have grown fond of Jacques.

Jacques is great, I hope he'll be there..

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12 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

I am not sure if the Sommeliers will still be onboard.  I guess to do the wine tastings?  I hope they will be as I have grown fond of Jacques.

Jacques is a Cellar Master. That’s a managerial position and deals with inventory and ordering as well as tastings and dinners. I’d guess he’ll still be there, but have to cover more territory if there’s no Sommeliers to help out.

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Just now, Horizon chaser 1957 said:

Jacques is a Cellar Master. That’s a managerial position and deals with inventory and ordering as well as tastings and dinners. I’d guess he’ll still be there, but have to cover more territory if there’s no Sommeliers to help out.

Yes, correct.

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So, thinking about this if the wine steward elimination is permanent then most likely the Cellar Master dinner is also a thing of the past?  😔 

 

 

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11 minutes ago, aliaschief said:

For those who have had communication with wine stewards did anyone ask them why?

I thought the answer was self evident…$$$.

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3 minutes ago, KirkNC said:

I thought the answer was self evident…$$$.

Cost reduction  is always the prime reason. Just curious if the duties will now fall on the wait staff of whom many do not imbibe in alcohol for religious reasons?

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1 hour ago, KirkNC said:

I believe it’s permanent as several wine stewards have told us on FB that they are trying to get jobs as baristas instead.  Also we were told by one of the waiters on FB.  Not sure if they will have “runners” to fetch bottles but the wine steward position is no more.  Not sure if it applies to Pinnacle and/or Tamarind.

I too have been in communication with a long time Wine Steward with HAL, I know he has been there over 20 years and he told me they told him he needed to reapply for either a Bartender position or Food Server and he did not want to do that. He was on contract when HAL pulled this stunt several years ago and they had him doing Room Service Mini Bar Service and some running of wine bottles to the dining room. 

Personally I think this will fail again like it did previously. They are trying to eliminate the number of crew on board. HAL's feeling is everyone will have the Signature Beverage Package so will not be purchasing bottles of wine. Personally that is where they are wrong. Plus HAL's Dining Room Servers do not have the time to be running to go get single glasses of wine let alone the bottles we want to purchase. Most of my drinking of adult beverages is wine at dinner in the Main Dining Room. I guess time will tell how quickly this fails agains for HAL.

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5 minutes ago, aliaschief said:

Cost reduction  is always the prime reason. Just curious if the duties will now fall on the wait staff of whom many do not imbibe in alcohol for religious reasons?

My understanding is the wait staff will serve the wine.  Not sure if they will have to go get it from the wine cellar.

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Just now, LAFFNVEGAS said:

I took have been in communication with a long time Wine Steward with HAL, I know he has been there over 20 years and he told me they told him he needed to reapply for either a Bartender position or Food Server and he did not want to do that. He was on contract when HAL pulled this stunt several years ago and they had him doing Room Service Mini Bar Service and some running of wine bottles to the dining room. 

Personally I think this will fail again like it did previously. They are trying to eliminate the number of crew on board. HAL's feeling is everyone will have the Signature Beverage Package so will not be purchasing bottles of wine. Personally that is where they are wrong. Plus HAL's Dining Room Servers do not have the time to be running to go get single glasses of wine let alone the bottles we want to purchase. Most of my drinking of adult beverages is wine at dinner in the Main Dining Room. I guess time will tell how quickly this fails agains for HAL.

 

I agree with you Lisa.  Whether we have SBP or don’t have it, we won’t drink that wine at dinner.  We order the bottles for our dinner and for other specialty dining.  HAL’s wine by the glass is not good enough to have more than a glass or two and definitely not good enough for dinner for us 😉 

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8 minutes ago, Horizon chaser 1957 said:

I wonder then if they’ll still have wine stewards on Grand Voyages. I don’t think they even have the Standard Beverage Package, do they?

I don’t believe they do.  We have purchased wine packages on WC’s but I am not aware of any drink packages.  It would cause sticker shock, 128 days x $70 (I am guessing at the price for a couple) = $8,960.

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We have seen a trend, on several other lines, to eliminate most wine stewards.  Why?  We have heard that the change is primarily because of the big increase in drink packages which include wine by the glass.  The wine steward system does not work well with that kind of system.  What we often see is that the waiters and assistant waiters will have lots of open bottles (that are on the wine by the glass program) at their stations so they can easily refill glasses as needed.    We have noticed that HAL has been increasingly running promos including their beverage package so this seems to fit the pattern.

 

Hank

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