Grand Theft, Booze? Restaurant Calls Police for Help Explaining Huge Bar Loss
McCormick & Schmick's comes up missing $32,659 worth of beverages and condiments.
A national seafood restaurant chain was so flummoxed by a massively off-base inventory of beer, wine and spirits at its Wauwatosa location it called Tosa police to ask that it be investigated as a possible theft.
McCormick & Schmick’s restaurant management also sent its own regional chef to try to sort out what happened to $32,659 worth of missing bar stock ranging from maraschino cherries to 25-year-old single-malt scotch.
Police visited the restaurant at 2550 N. Mayfair Rd. but found no physical evidence of a big booze burglary or ongoing thievery. Interviews with restaurant staff were also inconclusive.
According to police reports filed last week:
Vast inconsistencies in inventory reports were discovered in October. The McCormick & Schmick’s regional chef was urged by corporate management to report the theft of mostly bar service-related products that they thought had likely occurred over the past year.
An unsigned letter was found on the restaurant’s computer saying that a long-gone employee had “grossly inflated his counts of inventory” and that the mess dated back a good two years. The writer said he had notified management of the inventory problems.
The regional chef told police that it would have been an assistant manager’s responsibility to conduct a weekly inventory of the liquor, wine and beer in the restaurant. The weekly inventories were to be monitored monthly by general management. The regional chef was not available for further comment.
According to inventory reports, notable items that are unaccounted for are:
- $1,425 worth of Macallan 25 single-malt scotch
- More than $4,000 worth of kegged beer
- $1,075 worth of fruit puree
- $300 worth of Dom Perignon champagne
- $360 worth of Tattiger Brut champagne
- $300 worth of Jose Cuervo Reserve tequila
- $577 worth of Whitehaven wine
- $511 of Novelty Hill wine
And much, much more.
On Thursday, the regional chef further discussed the case with the Wauwatosa Police. He said that, at the time, it was not possible to determine the cause of the $32,000-plus loss.
He said that the losses could be from theft, poor inventory control, liberal bartending practices or erroneous bookkeeping.
The chef planned on consulting the McCormick & Schmick’s human resources department and then advising the Wauwatosa Police Department on the status of the case. For the time being, the police have suspended their investigation pending further information from the Portland, OR,-based restaurant group.