One of Australia's most expensive restaurants says taking tips to pay for breakages is 'standard industry practice'

SuppliedVue de monde

A meal at Melbourne’s Vue de monde, 55 floors above the city in the Rialto Tower, costs beween $230 to $275 per person, plus wine.

But even that’s not enough to cover the costs of running celebrity chef Shannon Bennett’s restaurant, with the multi-million dollar Vue Group admitting that a “small percentage” of tip money is used to pay for breakages “in accordance with standard industry practice”.

The restaurant group is facing several allegations of underpayment as well as depriving staff of tips for a range of reasons, aired in recent months by the ABC and sparking an investigation by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

Vue Group says the underpayment claims were “absolutely incorrect”.

Today the ABC published new allegations from former staff who claimed managers regularly kept their tips.

The Vue Group sent the ABC a response saying it kept some tips for breakages, but denied the chef withheld tips from the kitchen staff, and some of the other claims in the report.

The ABC said it saw an internal email from the restaurant that demanded staff take a “tip test” in order to receive the gratuities left by customers.

Another email revealed anyone arrive late for work three times would lose a week’s worth of tips.

You can read more here.

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