It was thirty years ago, and Daniel Boulud was upset. The food for table 12 had sat in the window too long. He yelled for a runner. No one. He yelled for a server. No one. The lobster was turning color. The bouillon was growing a skin. He yelled. One of the young servers pretended not to hear him and headed for the kitchen door with empty hands. Daniel picked the lobster flesh up off the serving tray and launched it at the server's own body, shouting "YOU PICKUP" as the bug carcass careened in mid air. Upon receiving the lobster shell somewhere inches from his head, the young server wasted no time in dispatching it, sending the glistening lobster on a quick red eye return flight back towards the cook's line and Daniel's own kitchen whites.
That young server was Daniel Johnnes, and today he manages a global wine program spanning some of the world's greatest cellars for the aforementioned chef, Daniel Boulud. See my snooth sommelier video interview with Daniel Johnnes here.