Thanks to reporter Darren Rovell, whom I follow on Twitter, we have documentation of this practice by a Denver restaurant:
Of course, I replied to him hoping he "rounded down" when it came to a tip.
But, c'mon with this. This ranks right there with restaurants that add a 15% or higher "service fee" for groups. I have canceled reservations over that bit. Or, on the couple of occasions I have been a part of finding this out when the group bill comes, that amount replaces any tip.
Yet, even replacing the tip can still be a ripoff. Maybe the service wasn't good enough to justify the percentage tacked on.
And, I point out that a professional restaurant should have enough experience and expertise to time 8 meals (or however many) to all be ready at the same time. And how they should be glad that a group of that size could all agree on eating there.
One of the times I pointed that out to a restaurant manager he appeared to be offended. So I pointed out that, if anything, they should DISCOUNT that percentage for large groups who eat there. "And if you consider that to be too hefty of a discount, how do justify sticking all of us with that same cost?"