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So I am changing careers and going to...


jon1265
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...bartending school.

 

I am currently a public school teacher (7th grade SS) and I am so over it. I am tired of being the whipping boy for politicans and the public (simply because I belong to a union) and have decided to leave the profession after fifteen years. The joy is completely gone and unless you are in it, it is difficult to explain, but it is over.

 

I am looking to make a move to Florida (Orlando) come next summer (long story--but it is happening) and will be attending bartending school in January (here in NJ). I hear one can make really good money doing it and while I am sure it will not be perfect I am looking forward to it, as well as a little nervous.

 

Anyone have any advice on how to become an EXCELLENT bartender or any other advice? :)

 

Thanks.

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...bartending school.

 

I am currently a public school teacher (7th grade SS) and I am so over it. I am tired of being the whipping boy for politicans and the public (simply because I belong to a union) and have decided to leave the profession after fifteen years. The joy is completely gone and unless you are in it, it is difficult to explain, but it is over.

 

I am looking to make a move to Florida (Orlando) come next summer (long story--but it is happening) and will be attending bartending school in January (here in NJ). I hear one can make really good money doing it and while I am sure it will not be perfect I am looking forward to it, as well as a little nervous.

 

Anyone have any advice on how to become an EXCELLENT bartender or any other advice? :)

 

Thanks.

 

Think it over carefully and good luck. I have a friend who is about 30 years old,makes $85+ teaching kindergarten. Not bad for only teaching 9 months of the year. I'm jealous.

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...bartending school.

 

I am currently a public school teacher (7th grade SS) and I am so over it. I am tired of being the whipping boy for politicans and the public (simply because I belong to a union) and have decided to leave the profession after fifteen years. The joy is completely gone and unless you are in it, it is difficult to explain, but it is over.

 

I am looking to make a move to Florida (Orlando) come next summer (long story--but it is happening) and will be attending bartending school in January (here in NJ). I hear one can make really good money doing it and while I am sure it will not be perfect I am looking forward to it, as well as a little nervous.

 

Anyone have any advice on how to become an EXCELLENT bartender or any other advice? :)

 

Thanks.

 

Yes, actually.

 

1) Pick an indie restaurant that's busy and that you like to eat at. It doesn't have to be high-end for you to make a lot of money. Restaurants with outdoor seating tend to be crazy-busy in the summer and you'll make a fortune.

2) The best bartending gigs are at night and on weekends for the most part, and you'll have to work your way into such a position. Many restaurants promote staff from within, and you'll either have to wait tables or barback first. It's a great way to learn your way around the bar environment, as well as to learn all the special drinks every restaurant has.

3) Many bars stay open late. Be sure to pick something that isn't going to interfere with the rest of your life.

4) If you tend to be organized, you will likely make a good bartender and server (and in most restaurants you have to do both). If you aren't, you'll have to learn to be.

5) Many people look down on servers and bartenders. It's actually a lot of fun and if you're part of a good staff you'll have a great time.

6) I almost forgot this one... pick a restaurant or bar that is gay-friendly. It doesn't have to be a gay bar or restaurant. But working with a bunch of homophobes is misery, and you don't want to get into that.

 

Good luck!

Chris Eisenhower

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...bartending school.

 

I am looking to make a move to Florida (Orlando) come next summer (long story--but it is happening) and will be attending bartending school in January (here in NJ). I hear one can make really good money doing it and while I am sure it will not be perfect I am looking forward to it, as well as a little nervous.

 

Anyone have any advice on how to become an EXCELLENT bartender or any other advice? :)

 

Thanks.

I don't know if you are a smoker but keep this in mind. Florida still allows smoking in bars where food is not served. Most gay bars still have smoking inside. As a non-smoker, I would find that an impossible environment to work in.

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Guest countryboywny

I grew up in the restaurant industry. I started as a dishwasher at 16 and progressed to a waiter at 18, and by the time I was 21 is was managing. As I look back now, it was the best time of my life. You go in, work hard, make your money and leave. Sure, it was very hectic at times and you work you ass off, but at the end of the night it's over and you walk out with a tidy roll of cash in your pocket. I agree with Chris's comment of picking a place where you will be comfortable with your co-workers and they with you. They will become your friends because you share a common schedule and will probably party with them. At least, that was my experience. Good Luck and be happy!

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I don't know if you are a smoker but keep this in mind. Florida still allows smoking in bars where food is not served. Most gay bars still have smoking inside. As a non-smoker, I would find that an impossible environment to work in.

 

Ding. I totally forgot about that. And most bartenders I worked with were promoted and trained there. You learn what goes into drinks over time.

Chris Eisenhower

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Vesper is a drink favored by James Bond in Casino Royale:

 

3 parts Gin, 1 part Vodka (preferable grain), 1/2 part Lillet (aperitif wine blend of Bordeaux and Citrus and used instead of vermouth). SHAKE and enjoy.

 

Is that right, Chris?

 

Oh my! This is my post #69

 

Always,

Funguy

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Guest countryboywny
Vesper is a drink favored by James Bond in Casino Royale:

 

3 parts Gin, 1 part Vodka (preferable grain), 1/2 part Lillet (aperitif wine blend of Bordeaux and Citrus and used instead of vermouth). SHAKE and enjoy.

 

Is that right, Chris?

 

Oh my! This is my post #69

 

Always,

Funguy

 

69 is my favorite number! ...along with 16 (you both get ate) :D

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69 is my favorite number! ...along with 16 (you both get ate) :D

 

Unless you're working at Fancy Bar, this is what you'll have to know how to make, most likely.

 

1) Cosmo

2) Martini

3) Margarita

4) Collins

5) Whatever girl drink is in vogue at that time (Sex, etc).

6) Classic drinks like Manhattan, Old Fashion

7) Russians or coffee drinks

 

Most people come up and say: "I'll have a gin and tonic." You say: "What kind of gin?" The hardest thing to remember is the sequencing of drinks, in that you can make stuff in a particular order on your speed well, and all the different wines/beers you'll have to remember should you work in a restaurant with a big wine and beer list. It sounds intimidating, but it's really not.

 

People do still use terms like "neat," "up" and so on, so you'll need to know all that stuff. But I've never seen anyone make a drink with an egg white, or caster sugar, or any of the many things that the bartender guides show you. Another thing that is fun is when you get to make drinks up. I always liked doing that.

 

I think the hardest part about bartending is probably doing service bar (where you have to make server drinks) plus waiting on the bar, plus waiting on any tables you may have at the same time. This is why it's good to scout out a place that you are thinking about applying to first, to see how they handle all these things. Just because a place is busy doesn't mean it will be pleasant or fun to work there. If management is bad or they are understaffed, it can really, really suck.

Chris Eisenhower

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Many of my friends are bartenders, and I only know of one that actually went to bartending school, and they mention it disparagingly, like it was a joke. So, I wouldn't invest much money in that. I think that there are two key skills to being a good bartender: social skills, and the ability to keep drink orders organized in your head. Those skills are hard to develop if your not naturally inclined, but learning the ingredients and mixing techniques is pretty easy.

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Many of my friends are bartenders, and I only know of one that actually went to bartending school, and they mention it disparagingly, like it was a joke. So, I wouldn't invest much money in that. I think that there are two key skills to being a good bartender: social skills, and the ability to keep drink orders organized in your head. Those skills are hard to develop if your not naturally inclined, but learning the ingredients and mixing techniques is pretty easy.

 

For those who are not so adept, there are organizers who actually can do a great job of teaching a person how to organize thoughts as well as things such as drink orders. It would be a great investment and probably better than bar tending school.

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One of the things I lamented about the passing of Splash bBar in NYC is that bartenders there actually spent time and talked to the customers and it worked in their favor when it came time to tip. If you like people and are willing to some harmless flirting you will have a good time. Anyone can mix a drink but if you have the social skills it can be a rewarding career.

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Anyone have any advice on how to become an EXCELLENT bartender or any other advice? :)

 

 

All the bartenders I ever saw who were getting lots of attention (and tips, I guess) were ones who were built, shirtless, hairless, and had their pants slung down low enough that they were showing lots of butt-cleavage. (But then, I used to live in LA!) So, if I have any advice, it would be to buy a gym membership, get the 5-year-plan at a waxing salon, and get used to being ogled! :)

 

Seriously, though, I don't know much about bars and such, so I also wish you good luck in your next career.

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...bartending school.

 

...

 

Anyone have any advice on how to become an EXCELLENT bartender or any other advice? :)

 

Thanks.

 

1) Make sure you know the requirements (if any) for the specific state you want to do it. Would suck to be trained in NJ and have them require some duplicate course in Florida.

2) The best bartenders are either extremely good looking or extremely good listeners.

3) Here is a little device that can make practicing fun. http://www.brookstone.com/perfect-drink-app-controlled-smart-bartending?bkiid=main_banner_zone|hmpg|a|banner|3|855317p

 

good Luck with your new career and move.

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I second the advise about a gym membership. Even in upscale, white linen restaurants or "straight" bars that cater to an upscale crowd, the waiters and bartenders that are in good to great physical shape are the most popular, get the biggest tips and people ask for them by name. Depending on the clientele, you will also find that many women prefer to ask for a specific waiter by name, or will sit at a bar or a table where they can be served by particular waiter. Most folks will forgive a messed up drink, but if you are friendly, can be socially responsive, courteous, etc. you will make much more money.

 

While in graduate school I talked my way into becoming a "wine steward" at a relatively modest restaurant associated with a very large motel. They did not have anyone who knew much about wine, and I didn't either, other than I knew what I liked. I got the job by agreeing to working only on commission. I was relatively good looking and in decent shape, but by no means a model. However, I was very social, and I made a ton of money only working three nights a week. They only could serve wine and beer, but I learned to spot folks who were looking to impress their dates or associates and they were receptive to my suggestions. Good luck and try your hand if that is what you want to do. Just remember, it is not always about what you know, but how you treat the customers.

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One of the best qualities in a bartender is the ability to overpour. Many bars frown on the bartender giving one on the house, but a bartender with a heavy hand will get bigger tips for at least two reasons: 1 Patrons usually prefer a strong drink and if it is too strong you can always add more mixer and 2 Drunk patrons tend to be bigger tippers.

A great smile is a great feature for a bartender. So plenty of nice white teeth and a pleasant bit of banter will go a long way. Also get out those nuts. The bar nut that is.

I have never seen a purplekow :)

I hope I never see one ;)

But I can tell you this and how I would rather see than be one :D

 

Help there is a purplekow in my mirror :eek:

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I just read an article a few days ago about "10 things you didn't know about bartenders". High on the list was "we all went to bartending school". The article said that it's a fraud and the best bartenders started out just working and learned on the job. I have NO personal experience with this, just throwing it out.

I asked one of my favorite bartenders about this last night and he did go to bartending school. He said it gave him some basic ideas about what to expect, he thought it had been a good idea. I stand corrected.

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Thanks for the advice. I am outgoing and striking up conversations with people will not be difficult for me. I am going to bartending school--that is happening so the advice about going into the business cold is lost on me. It's only a few hundred dollars, so it's not a fortune. I think a friendly bartender is more important than a hot 2o something, but then again, I have no desire to work in some sports bar or Hooters-type place, but would not mind working in a gay bar somewhere--not necessarily a e where to be 20-something and look liek a porn star--that is not me. I have recently lost almost a hundred pounds, feel good and confident about myself, almost 48, and really looking for a BIG change from public education. Again--if you do not teach--then you do not understand the stress. I do like the idea of going in--working my ass off--and leaving with a wad of cash. I also know some nights will be better than others. End of story. I realize my hours will be different and that does not bother me. Happiness is much more important at this point in my life--and I am not happy anymore in teaching. Thanks for the advice!

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