13 Secrets Your Bartender Would Love to Tell You
Find out how being polite plays to your advantage—and why you should always skip snacking on the fruit garnishes—with these pieces of advice.
1. Politeness Leads to Service
Yell, whistle, or wave money and I’m going to make you wait. Make eye contact and smile, and I’ll come over as soon as I can. Know what you want and have your money ready. Don’t create a traffic jam.
2. Start a Tab
If I swipe your card five times this evening, that’s five times as much paperwork I have to do at 4 a.m.
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3. Don’t Be Stingy
You want a drink made “strong”? Then order a double—for double the price.
4. Alcohol Trumps Food
Liquor sales in bars and restaurants were down in recent years. Even beer sales are slow. But people scrimp on food first, drinks second.
5. Loyalty Can Be Worth Free Drinks
A lot of bars have comp tabs, which allows me to give away drinks. It’s smart business and helps build a base of regulars.
6. Bar Booze May Be Tracked
Bars that don’t have regulars (in hotels, airports) have started using wireless gadgets that measure how much is poured and automatically ring up each shot. They’re meant to prevent overpouring and to cut losses, but I don’t like them—neither do customers.
7. Tips Work on a Sliding Scale
If your tipping guideline is still “a buck a drink,” listen closely: That doesn’t fly if you order a $12 cocktail. Tip at least 15 per cent.
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8. That Fruit Probably Isn’t Fresh
At some bars, the sliced fruit garnishes sit out until they’re gone, sometimes for days. Munch accordingly.
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9. Avoid Coming on Too Strong
The smoothest guys compliment a woman, then walk away—it’s very non-threatening.
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10. Don’t Push Your Luck
I have the police on speed dial, and I never hesitate to call.
11. Staying Late Doesn’t Make You Special
Don’t order a round of drinks after last call. Last call applies to everyone—even you.
12. Don’t Hesitate to Request a Cab
Some of us get a cut from the cab company when we call a taxi for a tipsy patron. Not that I’ve ever done that, of course.