So you want to be a bartender, eh? Oh, it’s not that hard – or is it? Like many other of life’s pursuits, the job is what you make of it. Meaning: you make it difficult or you make it easy. The more you study (not necessarily books), the more knowledge you absorb, and mostly – the more experience you acquire, the better you will be at bartending and easier your job will become. Notice, I didn’t say “…the better you will be at slinging drinks.” If you’ve been reading my blog a while, you’ll know that there’s a shit-ton more to being a great bartender than just memorizing index cards with drink recipes that you gleaned from (God-forbid) Mr. Boston.
I don’t get down with Flair Bartending. This is an indulgence best left for people who don’t want to actually take care of customers, serve drinks or make money – you know, by actually bartending. Yes, the best get paid and compete and all that; a quick trick is surely impressive once in a while. However, it’s a visual entertainment phenomenon best left for Vegas freaks and tacky Clevelander (Miami Beach) “bartender” types who are more accurately described as “performers.”
Yeah, I’m a performer too in many ways. However, my focus is on volume sales of food and beverages while being engaging, funny an flirtatious so that both the the establishment and I can make some freaking money. My main objective is to not spill half my owner’s very expensive liquor on the floor doing ridonculous things like trying to pour 7 shots from 7 shakers simultaneously, or spinning full bottles of primo Single Malts around like a circus clown while the bar is three deep. Anyone who thinks otherwise, has never worked behind a revenue generating bar. Rather, they’ve been watching too many late-night encores of “Cocktail” and “Roadhouse.” Speaking of which, don’t ever mention that Tom Cruise movie in my presence. You’ll instantly be painted as a douche who thinks he knows everything.