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Never Worked In A Bar Before? Look Out – Learning Curve Ahead!

If you have just taken your first job in a bar then you’ll probably be thinking it’s a piece of cake… not so my friend! There is an awful lot of elbow grease that goes into the smooth running of a bar and this is in no small part the bartender’s job. The key to bartending is to keep cool, calm and collected at all times.

Here are the main duties you will need to perform when working in a bar. It’s a lot more than just pulling pints! Read up so that you are properly prepared for your first day – it will help if you know what to expect when you arrive. You will probably be offered a lot of training but there will also be a lot of thinking on your feet required so be prepared to come with a lot of initiative!

Serving Drinks

Never Worked In A Bar Before? Look Out - Learning Curve Ahead!To be a great bartender you need an encyclopedic knowledge of which drink is which. You’ll start by pulling pints (tip the glass and pour the beer down the side of the glass to avoid the head foaming up too much). Then there are glasses of wine which need to be measured out properly. And of course there are shorts and this is when it gets really complicated. You’ll need to know your spirits and understand the difference between all the mixers. Some shorts also require a dash of something else too so quantities are important.

Never Worked In A Bar Before? Look Out - Learning Curve Ahead!

It will be a bit baffling to start with but you’ll get the hang of it soon enough. When the bar is quiet it’s a good chance for you to practice but as people start to file in you’ll need to be quick and efficient. Always keep one eye on the bar to see who is waiting – you will antagonize people if you serve someone before another person who was there before.


Never Worked In A Bar Before? Look Out - Learning Curve Ahead!

A good quality bar needs to be kept pristine at all times. This means keeping on top of the drip trays and making sure all the tables are regularly wiped down and cleared. At the end of your shift you’ll need to make sure all the fruit is put away and all the lids are on the bottles. You’ll also need to replenish the fridges and make sure that the bar is prepped for business the following day.

Changing Barrels

Working in a Bar

The cellar of a bar is the least glamorous part of all but this is where you will spend a lot of your time changing barrels and fetching stock. You’ll be shown how the barrel is changed so you can handle it when a pump runs dry. The cellar is a very dangerous place to be so you need to make sure everything is stored safely.

If you are successful at bar work it won’t be long before you are left in charge, and this could include cashing up, ordering stock, and managing staff rotas.

There’s a lot to working in a bar but it can be a lot of fun too, so get stuck in!

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This post was sumitted by Luke Wrangler a bartender with many years in hospitality industry under his belt. Luke also writes for a company providing training for certificates like RSG and RSA in Melbourne.

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