BEAT THE BAR BLITZ ON SUPER SUNDAY
A week before kickoff, head to your favorite watering hole and find out which servers will be working, suggest Clark Wolf, a restaurant consultant based in New York City. Then order a meal and a few drinks, and tip real big, like 30 percent or more. That will get the staff's attention. When you return on Sunday, you will be the hometown favorite: The servers will see green and be more attentive during mid-game madness.
The promise of a generous gratuity does not preclude the possibility that your server will vanish at the precise moment you need something. Call a few days ahead to ask for a table near the kitchen, Wolf says. You will be strategically positioned to catch your server's eye as he or she exits. If the place will not hold seats for you, just invite more friends: Most spots take reservations for parties of eight or more, says Wolf.
Order your first round and apps ASAP. Now here is the key plays: When the apps arrive, ask your server to come back at the end of the first quarter to take your dinner order, Wolf says. Such staggering ensures that the food is fresh, not just made early and parked under a heat lamp. Bartenders get backed up, so ask for a fresh round at the end of each quarter, no matter how full people's glasses are.
Most likely you will be there for a good three hours. So even the best servers may want to take a timeout from your table. Bring plenty of cash, especially dollar bills and tip after each drink. How much? If the room is packed, make it a buck a beer, no exceptions. Same rule for pitchers: a buck a guy when the refill hits the table. That way your server will be the one who stays calm and collected as the clock ticks down.