ANYONE can make a mistake. Pity the hapless wine waiter who accidentally served up a £4500 bottle of red wine at a busy steakhouse.

A manager at the Manchester branch of Hawksmoor, an upmarket chain specialising in steaks and seafood with nine sites across the UK, including one in Edinburgh, picked up the luxury wine unknowingly in what the restaurant management described as a “one-off mistake”.

A tweet posted by the restaurant read: “To the customer who accidentally got given a bottle of Chateau le Pin Pomerol 2001, which is £4500 on our menu, last night – hope you enjoyed your evening!”

At this point, I’m thinking: “Oh no, please say the company didn’t take this considerable sum out of the worker’s wages!”

Thankfully, any fears were allayed. The tweet also sought to reassure the person responsible for the costly faux pas: “To the member of staff who accidentally gave it away, chin up! One-off mistakes happen and we love you anyway.”

That’s a relief. I imagine such an obscene price tag equates to many long hours waiting on customers.

My hospitality industry heart goes out to that employee. I’m sure I have recounted previously just how terrible I was as a waitress. I must now confess that I was an even worse wine waiter and bar tender.

There was the time I didn’t quite judge the power in a bottle of Prosecco. On opening that particularly explosive device, I shot the cork halfway across the dining room and watched in slow-mo as it bounced off the ceiling, a wall and then landed in someone’s lap. How no-one lost an eye, to this day I am amazed. However, this incident pales into a blush rosé compared with Situation Wine Box.

It was a busy bank holiday night behind a toty wee bar in an Argyllshire hotel. It was going like a fair. Weirdly, there was a rush on red wine and we’d run out. Being a classy establishment, the wine was served on draught via wine boxes. There was no danger muddling up what we were serving with anything priced at £4500. A charge of £4.50 might have been pushing it. Well, could I get the fresh box open? Under pressure, with people clamouring for our Chateau Vinaigre 1987, I thought it would be a good idea to deploy a sharp-bladed knife to breach the stubborn box encasing that elusive, shimmering, silver bag of wine. Why is it called a wine box when it’s actually a bag? Oh, how I wish I’d pondered that question back then. Pop. Sploosh. In an ill-judged instant, we had a bar swimming in three litres of red wine. There’s treading grapes … and then there’s surfing on an ocean of wine. Suffice to say, it wasn’t a great health and safety scenario.

Back at the Hawksmoor, a spokesperson confirmed that the wine the customers had actually ordered was a Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2001, a snip at £260.

The customers in question have not come forward. If they do, I’d like to know if the wine they were mistakenly served tasted £4240 better than they’d expected. Or perhaps they’re too embarrassed to admit they failed to notice the difference. That would be a red face.