The King's Speech
Bartenders steps of service
1. Greet all guests as they arrive at the bar. If you are busy with a guest, make eye contact with new arrivals.
2. Make drinks in front of the guest whenever possible.
3. Make a check immediately after serving a drink or a round of drinks.
4. Be a roving bartender. Keep a wary eye and don’t miss anything in your domain.
5. Avoid long, involved conversations with a single guest; instead nurture the skill of holding several conversations up and down the bar simultaneously.
6. Don’t waste motion. When the bar is busy, complete at least two tasks each time you move.
7. Keep your bartop clean, dry, and neat; remove soda and Beer bottles quickly.
8. Always serve a glass of water with strong drinks.
Notes for the bartender
The guest at the bar is in a shared space and the tone of that space is set by the bartender. If a guest is short or less than cordial, the bartender cannot respond in kind. Once a bartender becomes unpleasant, rude or morose in reaction to a guest, the shared space is compromised and people will simply leave. It is a one-sided contract weighted in favor of the guest, but in practice it is an opportunity for the bartender to do what he was hired to do best, turn difficult guests into friends, make great drinks, and even on occasion subtly teach people how to have a good time.
Bartenders need to sharpen their powers of observation and highly develop their ability to listen. In the first encounter with a guest the bartender will determine not only the drink but the mood of the guest, whether or not conversation is welcome, why the guest has come and how to make the visit a success.
The skill a bartender has in handling the tools, and the small theatrical elements can return huge dividends. It is not meant to be a circus act but is necessary to convey a sense of confidence to show guests that they are in good hands. A bartender is most definitely on stage and working in close proximity to the guest and that demands careful grooming right down to the fingernails!
A bartender's skill and cleverness in being many things to many people is one of the most compelling and challenging aspects of the job. The bartender is a source of information on the day’s events in sports and general news, a glossary of where to dine, drink, see and be seen. He has the ability to keep the peace in a light-handed way, to gently separate a gentleman from a lady who may not find his company as compelling as he finds hers. Rudeness to a guest is never acceptable; there are many alternate ways of reacting to a difficult guest. Even the most difficult of guests can be handled with a professional demeanor.