Bartending can be a very profitable career when taken seriously. There are training schools out there where one can have the chance to become a bartender and learn the ropes of mixing drinks and giving proper service to customers.
This type of job sounds very cool, however, it needs focus and attention. Bartenders serve customers and it is important to meet their satisfaction in the name of their employers or the bar that they are working for.
So what does it takes to be a good bartender?
A bartender should be sociable. They are most of the time behind the liquor bar serving customers drinks. It is a skill to be able to engage customers in small talk, get to know them and their favourite drinks. This is one way of giving a good service and at the same time developing loyal customers.
Likewise, they should be able to work under pressure especially when bars are jampacked. At the same time, math skills required to be able to compute for the number of drinks a customer already have. Mixing and serving drinks are an art and can be very fun but remember that you are still serving under a business that needs to earn.
Aside from math skills, another one that makes use of good memory for bartenders are the different types of drinks to be mixed in order to create various types of cocktail mixes, liquors, beers and wine. Bartenders must know their products and how they can be served to customers.
How to become a bartender?
Many people ask: does it require for someone to go to a bartending school to learn the art of mixing drinks? The answer is yes and no.
Yes because some establishment prefer certified bartenders who have trained under a program. Employers have the right to look for a certificate since they are requiring someone of great skill to handle customers in their bars.
There are a lot of bartending schools that give certification. Bartenders can serve in hotels, cruise ships, and clubs where they are most likely to be placed.
Take note that just because you enrolled in a bartending program it can already secure that you can work as a bartender. They only give you the skills that you need but most of them won’t promise to give you work so it is up in your strategy what you should do after training and where are the places you want to work as a bartender.
In terms of salary, they only receive minimum wage or lower. They mostly rely on tips that customers give, which they can take home and is not usually part of their pay check.
For those who can’t afford to attend a bartending school, becoming resourceful can help you become the bartender that you aim to be.
There are some clubs and bars out there that offer on-the-job training for a bartender position before they can actually be absorbed by the company. Others prefer to freelance and land on gigs per night without actually having to become an employee of an establishment.
Read a lot about the art of bartending and watch videos of bartenders doing their stuff excellently. Also, experiment on mixing cocktail drinks. Be with people who can help you achieve what you want to be and always be friendly to bartenders when you go out so they can share to you the tricks and trips on becoming a good bartender.
What I need to know to become a bartender?
As mentioned earlier, one of the skills that is required for bartenders is a good memory especially when it comes to mixing drinks.
They can be the captain of the bar and must know to create or experiment recipes to create a new kind of cocktail drink. Plain mixing drinks is boring and must require presentation. It is usually one of the highlights in clubs and bars.
Bartenders usually become the performers. Bartending techniques include blending, flaming, floating and layering, adding a twist, coating the rim of the glass, muddling, opening a bottle of champagne, opening a wine bottle, frosting and chilling glasses, pouring, shaking, stirring, and straining.
Sounds hard, right? Well they are unless you practice these techniques everyday. Mixing drink is an art. Usually, there are bartending contests held in various places where participants are given points doing those various techniques.
Furthermore, they should be able to identify the type of glass that will be used for each drink. They should be able to tell the difference between a beer mug and a pilsner glass; a brandy snifter to a champagne flute; what an Irish coffee mug is; and many more. Skills and presentation are very important because a lot of things should be memorized and be able to know how to present and use it.
Career as a bartender
You may be surprised to know that some bartenders are actually bar owners. Another good thing about bartending is that some people have the passion for it. A lot of people like drinking. It is a social activity and sometimes, others find the art of making drinks.
Remember that bartending is part of customer service that’s why those who are into this kind of job have the responsibility to keep customers safe especially with the drinks that they create or experiment on.
Always keep customers in mind and don’t get too overexcited with showing off your skills. When it’s almost time for after hours, people are usually mostly drunk. Bartenders should be able to empathize with drunk customers but don’t tolerate if they are hard to please or are showing improper behaviour.
Bartending can become very profitable if you aim for a higher goal of becoming the best in the scene. The secret is to practice, practice, and more practice. Join competition if you are up for the recognition, price and network.
And lastly, always be professional, do your best and exceed your employer and customer satisfaction. You will be greatly rewarded for being a hard worker.