Ryan Brandt: Waitress who got $4,400 tip FIRED by restaurant as managers take 80% cash
A waitress from Arkansas who recently received a tip of $4,400 was unethically fired by her restaurant after the manager coerced her into giving up 80% of the money. Ryan Brandt, a server at the Oven and Tap restaurant in Bentonville, Arkansas, was gifted the large tip to be split between her and another server. However, she was soon asked by the restaurant manager to split the tip among all her co-workers, something that was never in the clauses of her job.
While Brandt was devastated by the request, more misfortune awaited her as she was fired by the restaurant soon afterward, for "violating" the restaurant's rules. "I was told that I was going to be giving my cash over to my shift manager and I would be taking home 20 percent," she said. Brandt further shared that she had originally planned to pay off her student loans with the tip. She had studied Spanish at the University of Arkansas in the past.
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Brandt and another waitress at Oven and Tap were awarded the $4,400 tip by Grant Wise, the owner of the local real estate firm. Wise had organized the '$100 Dinner Club' recently at the restaurant where Brandt worked. The rules of the dinner club included that each participating guest had to contribute a $100 tip. Wise had even checked with the restaurant beforehand to ensure that their servers do not share tips.
"We knew servers were really hit hard through COVID and it was something that [a friend] had come up with to help give back," Wise shared while talking about the idea behind '$100 Dinner Club'. He also added that Oven and Tap was one of his and his wife's favorite restaurants, which is why he chose to organize the event there.
At the dinner, he presented the $4,400 check to Brandt and another waitress who served them, leaving them overwhelmed and in tears. A video of the same was also shared online, where Wise can be heard saying, "We have a table full of absolutely amazing people from all over the country who have traveled here, and tonight we're hosting a $100 Dinner Club."
Addressing Brandt, he added, "Everyone at this table has contributed or tipped $100 for you and for the other waitress who unfortunately had to go home because she's not feeling well. And then we put it out to our social media channels, and then we actually had a bit more money sent in, so we are tipping a total of $4,400 for you to split with the other girl who took care of us."
However, after the event, restaurant managers made up the strange mandate where Brandt was asked to share her tip. Brandt insisted that such a rule was never followed at the eatery in the past three and half years since she joined. A few days later, Brandt found herself being handed the notice by her employers for allegedly violating the restaurant's rules by revealing their tip policy to Grant Wise.
Upon learning about the incident, Wise posted on Facebook, "I'm so saddened to hear that the girl we tipped the other night at our $100 Dinner Club has been fired from her job. I don't fully understand why this would happen to what seems like such a sweet and kind-hearted woman. Nonetheless, I'm committed to showing her that there are great people in the world that will do good when they can."
A GoFundMe campaign was also started by Wise to help Ryan Brandt, which raised around $8,732 in total. Updating about Brandt's present situation, Wise shared that she has got a new job and has been greatly helped by the generous contribution of donors.