How To Become a Bartender

When you head out on the town your best friend can be the bartender.  Bartenders are generally great because they can make you your favorite drink.  A good bartender is someone that you will tip well and go back to.  In fact, bartenders can make a fair amount of cash in one work shift. The truth is that if you are looking for a bit of extra cash you may want to look into becoming a bartender. 

You need to be aware that despite the fact that bartenders have the potential to make a lot of money there can be a few drawbacks.  Bartenders generally work late nights and weekends.  This can mean that you have to spend a fair amount of time away from your family.  Additionally, bartenders are responsible for monitoring how much their patrons have had to drink and cutting off those patrons if necessary.  That can be tricky but with the correct training you will know how to handle it and be ready to start raking in the cash. 

Education is the key with any profession, and bar tending is absolutely no different.  There are many bar tending classes around, and you will want to sign up for one.  Typically a bar tending class meets for a two hour session five nights a week.  Generally, each class lasts about a month.  During that time you will learn about how to mix different drinks as well as how to mix those drinks faster.  Bartenders are responsible for keeping a list of to be made drinks in their heads so often these timed exercises can be great professional practice.

If you cannot enroll in an in person bar tending class there are online classes that you can access.  These will not give you the one on one time with the instructor, but you will get the education that you are looking for.  These classes are typically focused on helping you memorize drink formulas.  The great thing about online classes is that you are able to take the class at your own pace so that you can fit it in with the rest of your schedule. 

You may also want to check with some local bars to see if they have internship opportunities or on the job training.  There are some bars that will provide you with the necessary training after they have hired you which can really help you get on your feet financially.  Additionally, you will be able to learn on the job experience that is truly priceless in terms of making your transition to bar tending even easier - contrary to other industries, experience is what matters the most for bartenders and it should be emphasized in your hospitality bartending resume

The old adage says "practice makes perfect," at that is definitely true when it comes to bar tending.  The more quickly and easily you can manipulate those cocktail recipes the better.  Additionally, keep yourself updated on the latest and greatest drinks out there.  This will ensure that you stay current and marketable as a bartender. 


Gail Esparan