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Bartending

Discussion in 'General' started by ou7blaze, 11 Mar 2007.

  1. ou7blaze

    ou7blaze sensational.

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    Well I just decided to go for a job since i've got a bit of a gap between now and me actually applying and joining the RAF.

    I was thinkin of jobs and decided to go for bartending. Don't know why but it just seemed interested. I don't have a problem lookin for jobs I think i've sorted that out but...

    I have NO IDEA how to be barman. I don't have the slighest clue, I mean ok fine I know how to pour beer properly out of the tap or whatever it's called. I know alot of simple things and terms.

    So what I'm asking is what should I do about the learning part? I'm sure I'll get on the job training but where can I start about learning on the internet? There any sites or something for newbie bartenders? :rolleyes:
     
  2. DougEdey

    DougEdey I pwn all your storage

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    Just be a happy face to people, start some banter, and then you'll be a good barman
     
  3. eek

    eek CAMRA ***.

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    I was a bartender for a bit while at uni, t'was a local pub so was nice and friendly (plus people kept buying you drinks making it a cheap night 'out').

    Most lager drinkers couldn't care less about how their beer is served, it's all the same old mass produced factory crap - like pouring a glass of water. Turn on the 'tap' and out it comes. If it looks a little flat, shake the glass a bit or bring the glass down away from the tap to liven it up!

    What you should concentrate on are drinks that people will notice the difference in taste depending on how thier poured, prime examples being real ale and Guinness.

    Guinness is a simple 2 part pour. Tilt the glass and fill it up about 2/3 of the way, leave it to settle, then hold it straight, push the pump backwards and it should flow out a bit slower, allowing you to top it off with a lovely shamrock. All in all it should take 119.5 seconds.

    Real ale is a bit tougher. If you try and pump it too hard and fast you're going to end up with a pint of head, do it too slow and it'll be flat. It also makes a difference if you have the sprinkler on or not as to how much head you get (*ahem*). It generally differs from pump to pump so will only find out with trial and error. Make sure the beer is kept properly, pipes are cleaned at the end of every day etc etc.

    Another hard drink to make is cocktails. If a guy asks for a cocktail make him a lager shandy, if he complains tell him to not be such a wuss and drink a real drink. Follow this by giving him a lovely pint of ale.
    If it's a rather attractive girl on the other hand then make sure you do it right! p.s. I'd practice throwing bottles around and trying to look 'cool' before you do it for real and end up getting fired!

    It's one of those jobs you learn as you do it. I wouldn't bother reading any sites about it, it'd be like reading how to drive. Practice is what you need!

    Good luck :)
     
  4. cerberus

    cerberus New Member

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    Was a barman for about 8 years, loved the job, you don't really need to read anything on the net as long as your a friendly face and good with the banter it doesn't matter.

    Most places will train you in what you need to know, the rest is easy to pick up while your there. The hardest thing for me to remember was what went into each cocktail, although at the bars I worked in the fancied drink i had to make was a shandy or something with coke (Social Clubs are such a riot to work in especially if they have entertainment).

    Just remember the regulars drinks and you will be fine.
     
  5. padair

    padair Inebriated

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    Never put a shamrock on a pint of Guinness unless the punter asks for it - it's the sort of thing you expect in Cheapyspoons or a pub geared for tourists, not what a serious stout drinker expects on their pint. Then again trying to get proper Guinness instead of the extra cold stuff is getting harder and harder these days.
     
  6. RTT

    RTT #parp

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    So true. Really annoying :( All they're trying to do is appeal to lager drinkers :rolleyes:
     
  7. hujambo_Bwana

    hujambo_Bwana New Member

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    Bahhh, Guinness, horrible... nice cold larger anyday.

    On a more serious note, a nice smile, get chatty with the customers and be confident when dealing with customers, especially drunk ones! Oh, a good services, if you make a mistake- smile, apologise and fix it right away and most peole will be happy.

    Good luck in your new job,

    Jimbo
     
  8. Krikkit

    Krikkit All glory to the hypnotoad! Super Moderator

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    Guiness is a great beverage. What I can't understand is why people slate lager so much.

    It's not proper beer, lots of us know that, but enjoy a cold, alcoholic, tasty beverage. Normal beer just doesn't cut it for me when it's hot, and believe me, I enjoy a proper beer.
     
  9. Flibblebot

    Flibblebot Smile with me

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    As an ex-cocktail barman, I can definitively say: don't try any of the bottle spinning crap. This is the kind of stunt they pull at fake places like TGI Fridays. Real cocktail barmen never spin their bottles.

    The real art of the cocktail barman is the "long pour", where you pour a measure from height (i.e. 2-3ft above the glass) without using a measure (learn how to count in a consistently steady fashion; a measure is about 3 or 4 seconds-worth of pouring, assuming you have a spout in the bottle). Also, learn how to use a real cocktail shaker (i.e. a 2-part shaker, one part stainless steel, the other part glass) and how to separate properly (the tap 'm twist; there's nothing more embarassing than not being able to separate the two parts properly). Also, be prepared to cover yourself in cocktail mixes at least once in your career, as the shaker separates prematurely :waah:

    If you're talking about working in a pub, don't worry about pulling lager, most punters wouldn't notice a crap pint of lager if it punched them in the face and called them a girly. As mentioned above, Guinness and real (hand pumped) ales take skill to pour properly.
     
  10. BUFF

    BUFF New Member

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    So it's not just me then that doesn't like their pint too cold ... :brrr:
     
  11. ArtificialHero

    ArtificialHero We were just punking him sir!

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    I used to run a bar, and when I was interviewing potential staff the qualities I looked for were as follows:

    - Are they personable?

    Any business in the service sector lives and dies by the social skills of its staff. If a potential staff member seems like they will interact well with customers, most crucially making them feel welcome and "attended to", they have almost got everything I look for.

    - Can they work well in a team?

    Any potential staff member has to be able to take criticism and act on it, and also be able to interact with the other staff without pissing them off, to be frank.

    - Are they able to work consistently?

    Bars are team driven. Anyone not putting in 100% when they work is damaging the business and making the other staff pick up the slack, and this is not good for motivation and morale. It's ok to slack off at the right times, but going for a smoke when the bar is 3 deep is only hurting the other staff and the business.

    Basically, the take home message is make sure you come across as a genuinely nice guy who is confident and friendly and you will have no problem getting bar work. Some bar managers only hire staff with previous experience, personally I think this is retarded, I've been served by enough crappy bartenders to know that previous experience does not necessarily make a good barman. I presume you don't have experience, so if you are asked about this I would try and come up with some transferable skills that you have despite your lack of direct experience - have you used a till before, or done occasional work as a caterer. Any service industry experience is definitely a bonus as it shows you at least have experience of dealing with people.

    Mike

    NB:
    You will notice that throughout this post I have made no mention of the actual "work" of bartending, and this is because it is piss easy. Any idiot can do it. The devil is in finding people that can make the customers smile at the same time.
     
  12. ou7blaze

    ou7blaze sensational.

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    Well then it looks like I might just have the qualities you guys have listed.

    I'm confident as a person, I like socialising and meeting new people.

    The only difference is this is Hong Kong and we drink more lager as opposed to proper beers and ales which I've tried in the UK and they're alot better. I'll take the points you guys have listed in mind and see how it goes. I'm lucky I know friends who know bar owners so I might just get a nice job in a proper bar.

    I'll tell you guys how my job interviews or something go. It's my first ever job and I aim to do a professional job I mean I AM going to apply for the RAF after this, I better be good.+
     
  13. liquid_gen

    liquid_gen New Member

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    i think i saw a bartending wikibook on wikibooks.com; not sure how good it is though
     
  14. cderalow

    cderalow bondage master!

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    just know how to make the basics..

    g & t, rum & coke, screw drivers etc...

    there's a good 20 drinks you should know what goes in them...


    that's about it...
     
  15. Lorquis

    Lorquis lorquisSpamCount++;

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    Don't be affraid to ask a customer again what exactly they want, if you don't know how to make a white russian, don't say "ok" and go round the staff for the next 5 minutes finding out... just ask them what it's ingredients are...

    Don't even bother flairing until you KNOW you can do it, outside of flat bottled drinks (J2O, reef, etc) I rarely ever flair... exceptions being the odd one spin from the neck of a beer bottle (doesn't froth but gets it into my hand for capping easier), and vodka bottles that have ONLY got roughly one or two shots left in. Wastage can and will come out of your pay. So basicly don't try to be flash unless you KNOW you can pull off the trick.

    Different bars will have different rules on things such as freepouring (pouring spirits into a glass without the use of a jigger/measure) so ask. Also the same goes for mixed drinks, some places won't allow you to serve mixes draughts etc such as Snakebite, Black and tan, turboshandy...

    In the uk you're not meant to put more than a tripple into any one glass (it could be double, not sure) unless it's a cocktail.

    Various drink 'cocktails' for your pleasure..

    Shandy = 1/2 pt Lemonade + 1/2 pt Lager (lemonade in first and keep the tap as close to the surface of the lemonade then about 2cm from the end drop the glass a bit to give it some life)
    Bitter Shandy = as shandy but with Bitter not Lager
    Turboshandy = 1/2 pt Lager + 1 bottle alcopop eg. WKD blue
    Snakebite = 1/2 pt Cider + 1/2 pt Lager
    Snakebite and black/Diesel = 1/2 pt Cider + 1/2 pt Lager + Shot blackcurrant cordial
    Spoiled Diesel/Dirty Diesel = 1/2 pt Cider + 1/2 pt Lager + Shot black aftershock
    Black and tan = 1/2 pt Guiness + 1/2 pt Bitter(John Smiths)
    Black Velvet = 1/2 pt Guiness + 1/2 pt Cider (nb. this is the cheap way, properly it should be done with champagne not cider)

    Cocktails with spirits as bases,
    Black Russian = 25ml Vodka + 25ml Kahlua (or Tia Maria or other coffee spirit) rest of the glass with Cola (with/without ice) Stired.
    White Russian/Caucasian = 25ml Vodka + 25ml Kahlua + ice + Cream(half and half is best) Shake.
    Screwdriver = 50ml Vodka + OJ
    Ferrari Jack = 25ml Jack Daniels + 25ml Ameretto + Cola
    Woo Woo = 25ml Peach Schnapps/Archers + 25ml Vodka + Cranberry juice
    Malibu woo woo = as woo woo with 25ml Malibu
    Sex on the beach = 25ml Peach Schnapps/Archers + 25ml Vodka + OJ and Cranberry Juice (equal parts)

    For more cocktails try www.1001cocktails.com helped me out a lot when I was still working bar...

    A lot of it will just come to it and you'll pick up your own styles and know how fast pumps run so you can leave a pint running down the bar, pour another or cocktail and finish off the first pint... Don't try stuff like that unless you can do it though... otherwise you'll end up with a load of wastage, clumsy drinks and a red face. I know.. I've been there done that...
     
  16. padair

    padair Inebriated

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    The Black and Tan is 1/2 Guinness and 1/2 Smithwicks - Smithwicks is an ale and not a bitter so you shouldn't use John Smiths (or Tetlys as in Ireland the only tetlys you get comes in a blue box), if you can't get Smithwicks, which considering that it's only available in the island of Ireland is a possibility, you should use a generic ale instead.
     
  17. Lorquis

    Lorquis lorquisSpamCount++;

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    Most pubs i've worked in don't have ales on tap... so bitter is the nearest thing as is what i'd been told to use...
     
  18. cderalow

    cderalow bondage master!

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    typical here in the states is Bass or Killian's for a black & tan with the guiness top
     

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