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Secrets Every Bartender Knows and So Should You

Know the proper way to be rewarded with a free drink from your bartender? These are the secrets every bartender knows and you should too.

By Greg BondPublished 6 years ago 7 min read

Depending on what day, most bars are always crowded with drunk and loud individuals. Especially if it's a tight bar, things can get messy and unorganized. The weekdays are nothing compared to the weekends, because almost everyone has the next day off from work—which is an excuse to drink heavily the night before. But I'll admit, the bar scenes are usually the best time—especially if you're drunk, of course. When the majority of people are drunk, they become the happiest and nicest people ever. They'll start talking to you like they've known you for years. And you know who gets to watch everything from the front row seats? The bartenders.

Bartenders have certainly witnessed the craziest, shadiest, and funnest people ever during their shifts. There are also weird things bartenders have to deal with on the job. They're watching all the action, serving up the drinks, and also being some drinkers' therapists. It's true, they're the ones so many people come up to for not only drinks, but advice. And the majority of them will gladly tell you their thoughts. However, that's not all what bartenders want you to know. In fact, these are the secrets every bartender knows and also wants you to know next time you head to a bar.

Having patience will get you your drink faster.

There's nothing a bartender hates more than an impatient customer. They'll catch a customer waving in their face, yelling "Hey, bartender" to get their attention, and the worst, waving money in their faces like they're some dog. You're not the only customer at the bar; the bartender only has two hands and there are other people waiting for their orders to be taken.

All bartenders hate impatient customers. The more impatient you are at the bar, the least likely you'll be attended quicker. Some bartenders will purposely take their time to get to you because of how rude you're acting. In order to get your drink faster in a crowded bar, wait patiently with your money, and make eye contact with the bartender. They'll get to you shortly.

They don't mind creating your special drink.

Of the secrets every bartender knows, they actually don't mind creating your own custom drink. If you want a vodka soda with a little lemon, cranberry juice, and whatever else, they'll gladly do it. Since they want all customers to be happy with their drinks, it's their job to do so. Plus, they expect a good tip after making a custom drink.

And don't get mad if your bartender doesn't have the right ingredients with them... you're at a bar. Don't make your drinks too complicated for them. Even though they don't mind, keep the special drinks short. It's not Starbucks.

If you want to be served first in a crowded bar, tip well on your first order.

This is a great tip among the secrets every bartender knows. While the bar gets crowded and more crowded by the minute, it's harder to gain the bartender's attention. However, they do know every single person who's come up to the bar as well as how much they tip.

So, if you want to always be served first whenever going to a crowded bar, tip your bartender well on your first order. Not only will this immediately grab the bartender's attention and label you as a great tipper, but you'll surely be the first they attends when you want to order again. Since you show that you're a great tipper, it's only natural for the bartender to attend to you first.

Bartenders are always ready to chat!

Bartenders aren't only there to serve you your drinks and nothing more... They love to chat! They certainly enjoy getting to know people in the bar, their personalities, cracking a few jokes, and having an overall fun time. Bartenders want to be viewed as a friend, not just a server.

Especially on really slow days, bartenders want to kill time and have a few conversations with those at the bar. Not to mention that they give great advice. Since they witness and hear about so many of people's problems, they know the best advice to give to those who need it the most. They can basically be your best therapist while you enjoy your drink.

It's okay for you to ask your bartender to try again.

Don't think that once you got your order and it wasn't what you expected it to be, you can't change your order. In fact, among the secrets every bartender knows (and so should you), you can kindly ask your bartender if they can change your order. Since bartenders generally want you to be pleased with your drink, they'll definitely try again if you're unhappy with yours.

Also, don't blame the bartender for a drink you don't like. They're only creating what you asked for. They hate it when you rudely ask for a different drink if you hate yours. There's also only a limited amount of times you can change your drink, so don't ask the bartender to change your drink for the fourth time because there's too little lemon. That's just being annoying.

Don't try to flirt with the bartender.

Please, for the love of all that is holy, do not flirt with your bartender. Sure, your bartender is your friend and server during your fun bar night, but if you find the bartender to be super attractive, don't go out of your way to flirt with her. Not only are they uninterested, but they're only at the bar to work and serve people drinks while having a fun time with them. They're not there to pick up dates.

Unless there's a bartender that's actually into you, hell, go right ahead. But most of the time, they're not really interested in the car that you have, your income, or that you have a thing for bartenders... just stop right there. Acknowledge this from the secrets every bartender knows.

Know your order in advance.

This is a major one among the secrets every bartender knows: know your order in advance! There's already a ton of people waiting for their orders to be taken, so the bartender really doesn't have the time to wait for you to put him on hold while you look through the menu and ask lots of questions. Sure, ask a question or two if it'll have you decide faster, but please don't waste their time while you contemplate whether the apple martini is worth it.

If you don't know your order yet, don't walk up to the bar to be attended. Think beforehand, have your money ready in your hand, and approach the bartender once you know exactly what you want. This way, the bartender can easily whip it up and you'll have your drink faster.

Less ice doesn't mean more alcohol.

Yes, people, asking for less ice doesn't mean you'll be getting more alcohol. A lot of us actually think that when bartenders put a ton of ice in your drinks, they put less alcohol. That's not true, they put the right amount for everyone, with or without ice.

Don't ask for more alcohol and less ice, because that's probably not going to happen. The bartender knows what you want and isn't going to be cheap about it. This is just one of the secrets every bartender knows, and something you should definitely know, too.

They're watching how much you're drinking.

Just because the bar is super crowded, doesn't meant that they don't know who you are. Bartenders known exactly who you are the second you order your first drink. From your personality to your face and how much you tip, bartenders do know you more than you think. They also know how much you're ordering, too.

If you've ordered more than five to seven drinks, the bartender is going to know. Not only are they the ones whipping up your sixth drink, but there's certainly a limit for everyone. Bartenders aren't stupid, they can tell when you're drunk out of your mind. And if they do recognize how drunk you are and the amount of drinks you ordered, they will cut you off. It's basically the law, and if a customer gets too drunk to fully function, the blame goes on the bartender for being the one to serve the intoxicated individual too much. So, don't get mad at the bartender for cutting you off, they're just following the rules.

Being nice to the bartender might get you a free drink!

Finally, from the secrets every bartender knows, being nice to your bartender can actually reward you with a free drink! Bartenders love customers who are super nice, always cracking jokes, and make bartenders love their job even more. If a bartender is constantly laughing at your jokes and certainly enjoys being around you, you can probably expect a drink on the house.

However, if you're being super rude to your bartender, there's no way you're getting a free drink. Even if you ordered a ton for friends and yourself, you're still not getting a drink on the house. Bartenders personally give free drinks to people they believe deserve it, it's not something they're obligated to.


About the Creator

Greg Bond

Will always catch him wearing a tux on the daily. Goes by Bond, hates his name Greg. You’ll find him in high-end New York City bars making conversation with strangers.

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