Up to date trends from the bartending industry
This is a common problem in the bartending world. Most bartenders don't realize that you don't want to muddle mint while making a mojito, or any other cocktail that requires mint leaves for that matter. Mint leaves only need a light press to release the oils to flavor the drink. When you muddle the mint it brings out a bitter taste that overpowers the natural mint flavor. So, the next time you make a mojito - go easy on the mint!
The simplest and generally the most rewarding way is to be so nice it is almost sickening. When you are all smiles and laughing but polite and guiding the customer has no real choice but to go with the flow. The best "cut offs" and walk outs start with just being honest and leaving no room for negotiation. Always know someone's name before you push them on the exit path. It gives you more credit with them and their friends and establishes you are not some jerk ending the fun you are just the guy or gal who is doing there job and being responsible.
For example: "Cameron buddy i think your time at our fine establishment is coming to an end(place laugh here)you have a ride home or should I call your parole officer....again?(hit up another laugh and grin and wait for the reply).
1.Measure It! If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it. Bar Managers should be keeping a detailed beverage cost report. This is an easy report to generate.
Opening Inventory (Value in dollars) + Purchases (Value in dollars) - Returns/Credits/Waste - Closing Inventory (Value in dollars) = Usage (Value)
Usage (Value) / Sales (Value) = Cost of Goods Sold (%)
I would also recommend breaking this into 3 categories. 1. Spirits 2. Draft Beer 3. Bottled beer. All have different target beverage costs. The overall combined target is 21%. When you break it down, your Spirits should be around 15-18% Draft Beer 25% and bottle beer 22%. You will need to check your cost from the vendor against your menu price, to set your individual goals (and ensure your charging enough for these targets. (The above references are what most profitable establishments follow.)
The organic movement is really sweeping the nation. While most obvious in the realm of food service, organic products are becoming more important in nearly every industry. There are even many organic options for clothing, home décor and cleaning products. The world of alcoholic beverages and mixology is no exception. Organic beer and wine has been popular for quite some time, but a bit slower to take off has been the organic liquor and cocktail market.
The high-end cocktail market is really taking off in some of the larger metropolitan areas of the United States. One of the catalysts in this market is the use of organic ingredients. Many drinks use fresh produce and organic herbs to give it that high-end taste, but in recent years there has been an explosion in actual organic spirits.
Since the 1930’s, beer cans have been produced in all shapes and sizes in the U.S. and have contained all sorts of beer from different regions all over the country. By the end of the 1980’s, however, the old steel cans that your father or grandfather once drank from had all but disappeared and the new aluminum cans produced by large national breweries had taken over the U.S. market. Over the next thirty years, sales of imported bottles and American Craft Beer bottles began to grow dramatically as consumers began to search for more flavorful and interesting beer than the large U.S. brewers had to offer. As a result, canned beer began to be seen as an inferior product and was largely ignored by those who took their tastes for beer seriously.
In recent years, however, American Craft brewers have begun to take an interest in the many assets that canned beer has to offer. Cans are cheaper to produce than bottles, they are easier to store and distribute,
Mixology is changing daily, one quick way to step up your game is to start making your mixers from scratch. It is very easy and not to time consuming, and adds a unique personal touch to your cocktails. As people have become more focused on processed foods and natural ingredients, this is a great way to have natural, great tasting cocktails at your next event or for your specialty drink menu. Here are a couple store bought mixers that can be made from scratch in minutes and you wont have to worry about artificial flavors or ingredients.
12 Ounces of Water
12 Ounces of Sugar
You can heat and reduce (although this will give you a thicker consistency which you might not want in some cocktails) or just mix in a bottle. It is a great natural sweetener for cocktails and for use in making other mixers.
As bartenders we are occasionally the line of defense for beautiful women that sit at our bar. Over the years, I have developed signal for women to let me know a customer may be bothering them (that will go unnoticed). If anyone is bothering you or being to forward, simply take your cocktail Napkin out from underneath your drink and slide it to the edge of the bar On the Bartender side. It is easy to notice and then it gives me the opportunity to engage and assist.
Always be diplomatic and courteous never trying to embarrass anyone but just resolve the Situation with class.
Tip: Always placing a cocktail napkin underneath the beverage sends a message that you are a professional and organized Bartender.
If you have heavy humidity, and are having trouble with the napkins sticking to the bottom of customers glasses, throw one shake of salt on the top of the napkin. Now the beverage napkin won't stick to the glass.
*Don't go overboard though because your bar top will look like a shuffleboard table.
This tip is so simple yet so powerful, and will seem silly at first, yet my last 3 experiences at bars in the DC area, this small step was not in their process, and it leaves the patron with an empty feeling as they leave the bar.
What's the tip you ask? Say "thank you" or "thank you for your business" as the patron is getting up to leave, or at least as you deliver the final credit card slip for signature.
It let's people know that you, and the establishment value their business. If you couple this "thank you" process with a handshake when some one initially sits down, you are setting up a level of customer service that is higher that most establishments, and that will drive repeat business.
I have seen a lot of bartenders that think since they are busy it is OK to make a mess of the bar (because they think it makes them faster). In reality they will misplace items and have to search for them on the next drink slowing them down. There is a simple formula for this. 1. Pre stock correctly. 2. Everything has a place. 3. Everything in its place 4. Wipe down surfaces. Just following those 4 rules will help to keep order and a clean bar during the madness.
Customers like to feel special and when you remember their name and drink it can go a long way. Face it your in the service industry and that is good service which will help increase your tips. I tip more to a bartender that remembers my name and drink at the establishments I frequent.