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Restaurant employees ecstatic after receiving $16,000 tip from anonymous diner



  • An anonymous man left a $16,000 tip for a $38 bill at the Stumble Inn Bar & Grill in Londonderry, New Hampshire.
  • The money was divided among the bartenders and kitchen workers.
  • Owner Mike Zarella said that the gentleman could have realized the difficulty caused by the pandemic especially in businesses like his own.

On June 12 at the Stumble Inn Bar & Grill in Londonderry, New Hampshire, a man dined in with a $38 bill and left a $16,000 tip!

Restaurant owner Mike Zarella told TODAY that he thought the man, who wanted to remain anonymous, was a regular customer until he paid the bill.

“A gentlemen came in at the bar and ordered a beer and a couple of chili cheese dogs, and then he ordered pickle chips and a Patron (tequila) drink,” Mike said. “At around 3:30, he asked the bartender … for the check. She gave it to him and walked away, and then he said to her, ‘Don’t spend it all in one place.’”

The bartender was planning to “get a break” first before giving the payment. But the diner’s joke about not spending it “all in one place” multiple times made her look at the amount much sooner than planned.

“She said, ‘Oh my god, are you kidding me?’ She said, ‘No, no, that’s crazy,’ and he said, ‘No, I want you to have this,” Mike shared. “He’s come in a few times since then … Last Saturday night he came in, I sat with him to talk with him for a couple of minutes. I told him that we were all uncomfortable with that kind of money, and he said no, he wanted this to happen.”

Michelle McCudden, the bartender who attended to the customer, said that “he’s kind of a mystery man.” She added that she’s been in her job for a very long time, but she’d never thought even in her wildest dreams that a customer would give this much tip.

According to the owner, the amount will be divided among the eight bartenders. Some would also be distributed to kitchen workers.

“People that are well-deserving got a huge tip,” said Mike. “Last week, they were worried it didn’t go through, so they didn’t count on it. Now they’re like, ‘Wow.’ Some of them are single moms, now planning a vacation. They’re getting good money out of it. They’re really overwhelmed. They’re like, ‘Wow, I can go do this this summer. I didn’t budget for that, now I can do that.’ It’s really fantastic.”

For Mike, the money was very much welcome and appreciated, especially with a difficult season given the pandemic. While New Hampshire “didn’t get hit as hard” as other areas and the restaurant has a “very good customer base,” they still struggled with the COVID restrictions.

“It just says there’s good, kindhearted people out there that realize that people might have to struggle,” he said. “Maybe this gentleman saw how hard it was.”


Source: TODAY