Cholula in restaurant with caption ' when i ran out of Cholula but my restaurant didn't' (l) Red Robin building entrance with sign (c) Cholula in server apron in restaurant with caption ' when i ran out of Cholula but my restaurant didn't' (r)

Robert V Schwemmer/Shutterstock @sheeshfeesh/TikTok (Licensed) Remix by Caterina Cox

‘I’ve paid with my tears over the last 3 years it’s ok’: Viewers defend Red Robin server who steals Cholula bottle from her restaurant

'With how much they aren't paying me, I consider it a benefit.'


Jack Alban


Posted on Sep 1, 2023   Updated on Sep 1, 2023, 10:46 am CDT

Certain jobs come with “unofficial” perks, but maybe it’s not always a good idea to broadcast them while on the clock. For example, one security guard used his downtime to live stream his gaming sessions in his quest to become a full-time Twitcher—it didn’t end well.

Now, a Red Robin server and TikToker “Icky Vicky” (@sheeshfeesh) recently went viral with a post that’s accrued over 631,000 views as of Friday. In the clip, she shows off one of her own workplace perks: free bottles of Cholula.

@sheeshfeesh ive paid with my tears over the last 3 yrs its ok #cholula #redrobin #server #restaurant #stealing #hotsauce ♬ original sound – DL

Vicky writes in a text overlay of the video, “When I ran out of Cholula but my restaurant didn’t.”

The TikTok features several quick cutaways between her giving a deadpan stare at a shelf containing numerous unopened bottles of Cholula until she finally grabs one of them and then slides it into her apron.

She justifies stealing the condiments from her job in the caption’s post where she writes, “I’ve paid with my tears over the last 3 yrs its ok.”

Many viewers thought Vicky was entirely justified in bringing the Cholula home as a perk of her food service industry gig.

A former barista remarked that they did the same thing, but even ended up nabbing an appliance for themselves in the process.

“When I worked at Starbucks I never ran out of oatmeal and milk the blender was also a plus,” they shared.

Another said they too felt entirely justified in giving themselves a nice little bonus in the form of workplace supplies, writing, “With how much they aren’t paying me, I consider it a benefit.”

“No bc one of THE best parts ab working in a kitchen is the free food, in all it’s forms and varieties, keeps me fed some times in-between checks,” someone else echoed.

While plenty of viewers said that helping themselves to work items was a hidden “perk” of the job, there are businesses that strictly monitor how much workers are bringing home. This is something a Redditor ranted about in a post they uploaded to the r/jobs sub. They said that while working in a grocery store, they were sickened at the amount of food waste they saw on a daily basis and that they’ve heard plenty of other restaurants/eateries with owners who let employees take all the free food home that they wanted.

However, they couldn’t wrap their heads around why the grocery store they worked at would fire employees for “taking leftovers.”

And while there’s a big misconception that restaurants don’t donate leftover food because they’re afraid of getting sued by someone who fell ill, that’s actually not true. In 1996, a bill was passed that largely protects companies from facing legal trouble if someone allegedly got sick from eating the food they donated.

Vicky’s situation, and the situations that some of her viewers expressed in the comments section, appear to be a bit different, however, as she took home an unopened condiment bottle. According to Indeed, Red Robin servers earn anywhere from $8.75-$26.40 per hour, with the lion’s share of their earnings largely contingent upon the amount they’re able to rake in with gratuities.

Also, the restaurant purportedly now adds 18% on takeout orders by default with no option to change, which may feel like a better perk for some employees (if they’re a part of that gratuity pool) than a bottle of hot sauce.

The Daily Dot has reached out to Red Robin via email and Vicky via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Sep 1, 2023, 10:45 am CDT