In The Biz - Interview with Dave & Buster's Special Events Consultant Tatiana Alvarez

Dave & Buster's is like an indoor year-round carnival with booze. Roughly the size of a small airport, Dave & Busters is a combination arcade, sports bar, pool hall and restaurant. It's no surprise that they also do a booming event and party business - from kiddie birthdays to large corporate affairs. Special Events consultant Tatiana Alvarez shared some of her experiences planning parties and events at D&B.

Clean Plate Charlie How long have you been at D&B?

Tatiana Alvarez: It will be 7 years in March. It's been quite a while. I didn't realize I was there that long until I looked at the calendar.

Whats your favorite part of the job?

Having the opportunity to interact with so many types of people and so many different personalities. Strangely enough, sometimes that's also the least favorite part of my job, too.

You plan parties and events at Dave & Busters. Have you ever had any strange requests?

The funniest thing that happens all the time is that people ask if they can bring their own food. We're a restaurant! We sell food! You have to be nice but you want to say uh-no!

One time The Zoological Society had an event here and they wanted to bring wild animals, like tigers, to the restaurant as decoration or something. I told them that there were probably several hundred health code laws against having wild animals in a restaurant.

Have you met any celebrities?

We have a lot of Dolphin Players come into Dave & Buster's. Jeff Van Gundy from The Miami Heat was here. Jennifer Lopez had a staff meeting here and OJ Simpson ate at D&B, but I'm not sure if he counts as a celebrity anymore.

Whats your favorite dish on the menu?

I'm all about the appetizers. I love our spinach dip and we serve a pretty great Teriyaki sirloin.

What's your favorite drink?

Flor de Cana with a splash of coke. People in the restaurant industry aren't into fancy drinks - we need something stronger. We're the "on the rocks" people.

Follow Clean Plate Charlie on Twitter: @CleanPlateBPB.
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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times, covering the restaurant and bar scene in South Florida. She has been featured on Cooking Channel’s Eat Street and Food Network’s Great Food Truck Race. Doss won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature on what it’s like to wait tables. In a previous life, she appeared off-Broadway and shook many a cocktail as a bartender at venues in South Florida and New York City. When she’s not writing, you can find Doss running some marathon then celebrating at the nearest watering hole.
Contact: Laine Doss