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How to Format a Fine Dining Server Resume

Serve your best from the start! Just like fine dining requires a superb presentation, how you present the parts of your resume is equally important. A resume format resembles the order in which you would set up a full-course meal in that it determines how you bring forth your experience and skills.

The three most common resume formats are chronological, functional and hybrid. Here we will focus on the types of resume formats that work best for you.

For experienced servers, a chronological format will immediately feature your work history. However, if you just started, a functional resume format is a clever way to shift the attention to your skill set instead.

Let’s take a look at the following job candidates for an overview of how you can use resume formats according to your level of experience.

Chronological Resume

Candidate A

  • 16 years in workforce
  • 3 years at this job

Work Experience

Fine dining server, Norwegian Cruise Line
March 2019- Present, Miami, FL

  • Execute daily menu presentations and share distinguished knowledge of premium cuts of steak and other gourmet menu items.
  • Provide wine presentations and recommendations to a discerning clientele.
  • Receive two awards for consistent positive comment cards for exemplary service provided.

Functional Resume

Candidate B

  • 4 years in workforce
  • 4 months at this job
  • AAS Wine Production

Professional Skills


  • Excellent team player, taking the initiative to work with front-of-house staff, welcoming guests, directing them to their seats and assigning tables to different servers.
  • Ensured all servers had between four to five tables depending on the party size.
  • Helped present orders and deliver meals to all tables including the areas assigned to other servers, if they were busy.

Food Preparation Skills

  • Knowledgeable about the restaurant’s dishes to effectively recommend items that entice guests to purchase more expensive items and add-ons.
  • Comprehension of proper cooking temperatures and food safety.
  • Operating kitchen equipment, creating desserts and applying barista techniques.

Fine Dining Server Duties and Responsibilities

To accomplish their goal of providing diners with an outstanding experience, Fine Dining Servers take on a variety of duties. Based on our analysis of several job postings, these are some of the most common Fine Dining Server duties.

Learning the Menu Fine Dining Servers must be experts on a restaurant’s offerings. When patrons inquire about food choices, Fine Dining Servers should be able to explain ingredients, preparation techniques and available substitutions. They know about daily specials or seasonal offerings not on the menu and convey information about these additional choices to the dining party. Fine Dining Servers also may offer suggestions to enhance the experience, such as which wine pairs well with a given entrée.

Handling Orders Fine Dining Servers take food and beverage orders from customers, deliver written requests to the kitchen for preparation, carry items to the table in the proper order, help the bus staff as needed with the removal of finished plates, refill drinks and collect payment when the meal is over.

Providing Customer Service Whether a food item isn’t up to satisfaction, a guest drops his fork and needs another one or the air conditioning is too cold, Fine Dining Servers rectify the problem.

Following Procedures Upscale restaurants often have strict guidelines in order to keep operations flowing and service consistent. Fine Dining Servers are aware of these instructions and act accordingly. They also pay close attention to safety measures so that food does not inadvertently become contaminated or someone gets burned by a hot plate.

Training Others Seasoned Fine Dining Servers often assume the responsibility of getting new hires up to speed.


Fine Dining Server Skills

Good Fine Dining Servers embrace their role. They know their appearance, attitude and actions play a large part in creating a pleasant atmosphere. Thus, hiring managers search for candidates with these capabilities:

  • Looking well-groomed and neatly dressed consistently to reflect positively on the employer
  • Paying attention to detail, such as placing orders exactly to customer specifications
  • Listening carefully to determine the desires of patrons and act accordingly, such as figuring out the right level of pinkness for a steak
  • Maintaining politeness and positivity, especially when dealing with rude or disgruntled patrons
  • Multitasking in order to serve the needs of various diners at the same time
  • Interacting sufficiently with customers to build goodwill and attend to their needs, but also being sensitive about giving people their space

Fine Dining Server Education and Training

Though no formal education is required, most Fine Dining Servers possess at least a high school diploma. A culinary or college degree, however, can impress hiring managers at upscale restaurants and increase the chance of landing a position. Employers also look at past experience, so servers sometimes work at less prestigious restaurants first in order to build their resumes. All Fine Dining Servers can expect plenty of on-the-job training to ensure they know exactly what to do to best represent the restaurant and provide a quality experience for diners.


Fine Dining Server Salary

The BLS includes Fine Dining Servers under the category of Waiters and Waitresses. The median annual salary for waiters and waitresses is $19,900. Workers in the 10th percentile earn about $17,000 a year, and the highest paid make more than $38,000 a year. Waiters and Waitresses in Hawaii, Vermont and California make the highest median salaries in the U.S. – $34,230, $29,180 and $25,470, respectively. It should be noted that Fine Dining Servers rank among the best paid in the profession. Tips often get calculated based on a percentage of the bill, so expensive restaurants lend themselves to servers earning more.


Fine Dining Server Resources

Check out the following additional resources to learn even more about a career as a Fine Dining Server.

National Restaurant Association – The Careers section on the website of this leading industry organization offers information on training, education, scholarships and the future of working in the restaurant business.

Careers in the Restaurant Business by Institute for Career Research – Where do Fine Dining Servers fit in among the many careers in the restaurant industry? This book offers vocational guidance for prospective applicants.

Remarkable Service by The Culinary Institute of America – Respected industry-wide as a contemporary reference guide and refresher for food service professionals, this book offers straightforward advice on everything from setting tables to properly taking orders to dealing with customer complaints. Reviewers call it “easy to understand,” “comprehensive” and “helpful.”

Lessons in Service from Charlie Trotter by Edmund Lawler – Want the inside scoop on what it takes to operate a successful restaurant? Renowned restaurateur Charlie Trotter knows all about the importance of customer service in upscale establishments. His tips and insight can help Fine Dining Servers anywhere develop into superstars.

Fine Dining Advising: The Ultimate Guidebook to Success by Franky Surroca Ready to maximize your earning potential? The subtitle of this Kindle book is “how to make your tips, knowledge and hospitality skyrocket,” making it a great read for Fine Dining Servers wanting to do a spectacular job – and get rewarded for it.

Fine Dining Server Resume FAQ.

How do you put fine dining jobs on a resume?

To include fine dining jobs on your resume, start with a resume template. These templates are fully customizable and designed for any job.

Simply fill in the blanks to personalize your resume with your skills and experience. Show off your superb customer service and positive attitude, and highlight your ability to work under pressure and multitask.

Another key area to showcase is your ability to be a team player. Under your job experience, organize your entries in a bulleted format and describe how you have worked with bussers, cooks and hosts to ensure guests have an outstanding fine dining experience.

How to write a summary for a fine dining resume?

Professional summaries are a quick way to let recruiters know that you are qualified for this new role. In just a couple of words, mention your current role and professional experience.

For a powerful resume summary, say how your expertise can contribute to the restaurant’s overall success. Add key accomplishments that prove you can deliver results.

Here’s a quick checklist for a strong summary:

  • Your professional title.
  • Relevant experiences in fine dining.
  • Experienced candidates can include the total number of years worked.
  • Top achievements and the fine dining skills that will contribute to the restaurant’s goals.

Which food and beverage server skills are good for a resume?

Fine dining servers must include a combination of hard and soft skills for quality service. Here’s a snapshot of the nine most important skills for your fine dining resume:

  1. Customer service
  2. Attention to detail
  3. Good communication and active listening
  4. Food preparation skills
  5. Operating kitchen equipment
  6. Sanitizing procedures
  7. Bartending
  8. Fine dining and wine pairing
  9. Table etiquette

These skills contribute to an upscale and memorable dining experience.