The Top 10 things customers do to annoy Bartenders

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1. Arguing with a bartender. Just don't - this is one battle you won't win. It's quite possible that a bartender screwed up your cocktail and garnished that Gibson with a cherry. You might also know 10x as much as the bartender does about cocktails. I'll share a secret with you, bartenders by nature have very big egos and want to be the alpha dogs at the bar. Recognize this fact and you'll have them eating out of the palm of your hand. If they ask you how that Gibson with the cherry garnish tastes - just smile and say fantastic. Next time don't go back. Any bar that garnishes their Gibson with cherries isn't a bar worth going to.

2. Not knowing what you or your friends want to drink BEFORE you get to the bar - especially at a crowded bar. The bartender is there to serve everyone at a bar, not just you. Don't waste the time of other people waiting behind you who already know what they want to drink, and most of all don't waste the bartenders time.

3. Splitting up your drink orders. If you will be ordering a couple of the same drinks, tell the bartender at once - it will be easier on the bartender. Easier for the bartenders means happier bar experience for you. Don't wait until the bartender makes a round of drinks including a Manhattan before you decide you want another Manhattan.

4. Ordering complicated drinks at a busy bar. Complicated could anything that's not common, for example a lot of the cocktail recipes you'll find on this blog. When the bar is busy - just get something simple. Simple could mean whatever the specials are (ask for top shelf liquor) or anything popular (again ask for top shelf liquor). If you want a classic or complicated cocktail, wait till the bar is slow and tell the bartender you'd like them to make you a special drink you had somewhere - you don't know what it's called (even if you do, if the bartender recognizes the drink you've got yourself a keeper) but you do have the recipe. Write it down and hand it to the bartender.

5. Ordering a complicated drinks at a busy bar (same as #4 but I need to repeat this to drive this point home) - people are like sheep, once you order something different, other people at the bar might want to try it. If they like it, guess what? Your bartender will be making complicated drinks for the rest of the night and who likes complication? Easier for the bartender means happier for you. Also don't order more than two - whether the bar is slow or not.

 6. Tipping poorly - Bartending is a hard job, and contrary to what you might think bartenders make little in terms of wages and depend almost entirely on their tips for their income. Plus you want that bartender on your side as soon as possible,  which translates to faster service. Contrary to what you might think, bartenders remember poor tippers. If you're ordering a couple, leave a really good first tip after your first drink and you'll see what I mean.

7. Yelling at the bartender. When you make your way to the bar, relax. The bartender is there to serve you and will acknowledge you. Do not whistle, click your fingers, wave your money at the bartender and worst of all - bang the bar loudly. Don't even bang the bar quietly. Just smile and nod when the bartender looks your way and patiently wait your turn. Nodding at the bartender first will make them serve you faster.

8. Leaning over the bar. Respect the bartenders space. See #1 about alpha type personalities.

9. Not having your money ready when ordering your drink. See #2.

10. I'm leaving #10 open for you, the reader to choose. Just comment on this post and I'll add the most popular thing from the comments.

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A few things bartenders need to stop doing:

1. Dancing and singing while ignoring me and my 20 dollar bill.
2. Trying to stiff me on my change.

I disagree with #1. People need to tell their bartenders when they screw up, otherwise they will never improve. That’s how powdered sour mix became popular, nobody ever complained. Every profession needs to deal with a little constructive criticism, bartenders with ego’s too.

The bartender needs to reel his neck in and fix me my drink. Right. The first time. He is there to serve me and get whatever I ask for. I realize he/she is probably not too bright and that is why they are working as a bartender, but making a simple drink is not rocket science.

Get it together bartenders.

I agree that bartenders need to know when they mess up. Especially when they do it and short you on the actual spirit.

Get it together? not bright? Pshhh right I am a bartender that makes a shit load of drinks that you complicated fuckers ask to make in a middle of a rush without hesitation. I respect you , you respect me that the way it works…You tip me I make you a good drink…PERIOD, if you get what I am saying… and for those stupid bitches that order I fuckin martini at a time then let you stupid friends realize that a midori sour is not a real drink and then they order your freaking martini and waste my time for a 1.00 tip..that’s awesome, it may seem like we have egos but in reality we have an attitude that says fuck you and your no tip…so you get a shitty drink. Ask any good tipper if their drink ever has sucked? That’s what I thought.
Now back to my studying…

well said kelly! we do have it together otheriwse we would lose it behind a busy bar! try facing a 5 deep crowd spread across the whole bar all isnisting they are next! you gota have a thick skin. and we are certainly not thick. if you can remember a whole round so can we, but mess us around and ask for one drink at a time. and ask for a guinness or a cocktail at the end. your gunna piss us off and u may not get the best service. you ask for a flavoured alco pop but just give the brand name we say “ok, what flavour?” you say “yeah” yes what! we listen to u so listen to us! arsehole!

give us your whole round said in a logical way smile say please thank you pay straight away and tip us id u like. well everyone is happy! funny how those who have never worked in a bar are so quick to criticise us!

bartenders dont stiff you on your change or the amount of alcohal in your drinks. we are the sobre ones. we have to measure the alcohal. so i dont know where you got that from! plus you give us a 10 note we give u change for a 10 note. its how it works…. i admit it sometimes happens but rarely. usually the customer has made the mistake…

LISTEN UP. I’m a bartender. You come to my bar and you are in MY WORLD. I own you I have the alcohol. You can be the biggest big shot, celebrity, have money falling out of your ass, I don’t care. If you are disrespectful and condescending then you get nothing. I have been in the service industry for many years here is some fucking news assholes we are here to assist you in your dining or drinking experience. We ARE NOT your servants or slaves and we could give a FUCK if you feel you are above us because you are a cheap fuck who wants to be waited on hand and foot without paying for it. Your only bargaining chip is how much you tip and until you prove otherwise you are guilty until proven innocent.

1. If you think you are getting shorted at the bar here is some news most bartenders over pour 3 times what a standard pour should be for a drink. Barcardi coke is an ounce and a half : bacardi rocks is 2 ounces – martini is 3 ounces. If you have a big glass at a nice establishment the amount is the same. In a big martini glass 3 ounces doesn’t go to the very edge understand. 2 ounces in a nice rocks glass doesn’t fill the glass up to the brim understand. On Wine: 5-6 ounces is the standard pour. If you have a nice big reidel glass and you have about 3 fingers in the bottom of the glass and you are crying like a little bitch about being shorted GO TAKE A WINE CLASS. Glasses that size hold 750ml (that is a whole bottle of wine– can we do the math??). Here is an idea if you want more alcohol in your glass so it looks more full because you are a half empty kind of person then expect to pay for it. If you want 8 ounces of whisky in a small rocks glass for $7 then go to the nearest po-dunk dive bar and be a cheap ass…

2. On bartenders not being that bright… I have a college degree and my bar back has a masters degree and we probably make more money than you do working in bars and have more fun and meet more women to… sucks for you smart people keep on living the life.

3. When bartenders screw up… It is probably your fault because you have no fucking clue how to correctly order the drink you want. Or you think you can order specialty martinis from cheesecake factory at any bar and every bartender in the world should know how to make them because they are the best (ad sarcasm).

4. Here is some finally wisdom for you… It doesn’t matter how much money you have it matters how much you tip. If you are standing waving a 20 dollar bill like you are a baller because that’s how you are going to pay for your 18 dollar tab go get douche tatooed on your forehead. Ballers tip 50% to 100%. Nobody gives a damn about the dumb idiot waving the 20 dollar bill. Tip well in a club and you will get drinks faster. Tip well in a hotel and the bartender might introduce you to 10 you see sitting at the end of the bar that you are too much of a chicken-shit to go and talk to. Tip well often enough and the bartender might start to hook you up. Act like an asshole and expect to get treated like an asshole.

If you would like more education on the subject come see me at my bar and I might help you out or bitch slap you across the face for being so moronically inferior that you think some how you are actually superior. Give it some time you’ll figure it out.

Right on sista, I agree with Kelly. Bartending is a hard job, and its my second job “because im bright enough to work a very good paying full time job”.The Bartender is usually in charge when behind the bar. So my advice to the rest of you pricks, you’re better of making the bartender your best friend not your enemy, considering she does have the right not serve anybody. So make your partying night pleasant for everybody and leave a good tip, don’t drink complicated drinks and always be polite.

kelly, you couldnt have said it any better my friend… i started bartending not too long ago but ive been drinking in bars since i was 16.. and always leaving a good tip (2 bucks a drink usually)… im actually surprised how many people dont tip.. it all works out in the end for when that person that didnt tip returns to the bar im working at he’ll be getting less alcohol per drink, in return him ordering more to achieve his buzz…

For people who like to think that bartenders have an unneccesary ego…you need to understand we deal with alot of stupid fuckers yelling at us all night long asking us to make alot of annoying and tedious things and expecting it to happen lickity split as if they’re the only person in the bar. Of course this isnt every person who comes into the bar alot of patrons are very enjoyable, but please for those of you who dont fit that description, give us a break and understand that we are trying to make everyone happy. It is our lively-hood after all. If a bartender is ever bitchy to you, you probably deserve it or you ordered your drink immediately after a complete asshole.

Bartenders often try ti RIP OFF customers.

1. try to pay your bartender the correct money
2. Watch your bartender porn your drink and make sure they dont fill with Ice / water
3. Only Tip a bartender if they do a good job! otherwise why dont they just have vending machines?
4. A grumpy bartender deserves NO TIP. Teach them that customers can go to another bar or drink at home. They get paid to do Extra not just open a lid on a bottle like a monkey can

Get it together?!!!
Not too bright and that is why they are a bartender??!!!

Are you fucking serious?!!

Look jerk-off. I managed a $10 million/year business and was not happy. I bartend because of 3 things. 1) I enjoy it, 2) I get paid very well, and 3) I enjoy it. I have degrees in business management and was very good at it, as I am at bartending. Unless you can out-tend me (which I know you can’t) don’t judge me or tell me I am not brilliant. The only thing that I don’t like about my job is jackasses that think they are more important than anyone else. Stay home and drink, keep your quarters.

All you people are idiots….The people trying to be “smart” bartenders cant even spell right…The people trying to talk shit about bartenders probably dont tip worth a shit…if i order a jack and coke make it strong and give me some freebies…take care of me ill take care of you..i wanna drink you want tips thats it, fuck the bar because they dont care about any of us

So i look at it this way;
Bar tenders are just as human as you or I. They’re working a JOB just like any other employed individual. i dont know about everyone else, but when im at work and someone gives me shit i dont exactly respond pleasantly. running a bar may not be rocket science, but anyone willing to put up with an endless rush of drunken morons deserves respect.
Put yourself in their shoes and think how you would want to be treated if you were in the same position. Even if the dude/chick is in a pissy mood, be friendly and tip well. you may just brighten their evening. plus they’re not dumb, bad customers are easily remembered so think twice before you mouth off. If they fuck up tell them NICELY how you would like the next drink. If you’re so bent out of shape by it that you feel the urge to be a dick about it, hold your tongue and walk away. theres always another bar.

The biggest beef I can add to an already complex list of complaints is this: Since when is the name of a drink the answer to: How are you this evening? It drives me insane when I approach a patron and inquire about their well being, and the answer is given in the form of a drink name. Bartender: “Hello John, how was your day?” Patron: “Bud Draft and a shot of Jack.” We do appreciate good conversation, no matter how brief. At least give us enough respect to hear the question you are being asked.

Every bar is different . . . but one thing remains constant; bartenders, no matter where, have to deal with assholes like johnny poon. Johnny needs to learn to respect others a little more. I respect everyone that comes into the bar until they give me a reason not to, so respect me. If you haven’t ever tended before than don’t claim that it’s easy. I have to act like I like you assholes that come into the bar, that is hard in itself . . . if it wasn’t for the nice people I wouldn’t be bartending anymore. You are obviously a person who thinks that the world revolves around them . . . you must not be very bright.

Bartenders who get mad or annoyed with customers who request uncommon (“complicated”) drinks need to get over it. Bartending is a job and to get annoyed at someone for ordering what they want is ridiculous. It’d be like a bank teller getting an attitude with someone because they want to deposit multiple checks AND make their monthly mortgage payment. Part of being a bartending is having the knowledge to make a variety of drinks. The only reason a drink may seem complicated is because you are probably unfamiliar with the process. Yes, some drinks take longer than others to prepare and I completely understand the frustration this can create when the bar is busy, but at the same time, how many bartenders on here just said they love their job. I personally get sick of making Jack & Cokes and Long Islands all night; I love when people come up and order something out there in right field. Yeah, you might miss out on a few extra bucks in tips while preparing some atypical drink, but that’s the part of the job I love; the challenge of something new. Plus crazy drinks are always good conversation starters. And for all the people out there, who simply don’t like making uncommon drinks because they feel they are losing money in the process, tell the customer that you have to charge a little more since it’s not a typical drink. Most people are understanding about it, and I tend not to worry about those who aren’t.

As for customers who think you’ve made a drink wrong, let them tell you. I don’t know a bartender who hasn’t made their fair share of mistakes over the years, especially during the busy hours. If they are insistent on a new one, apologizing and making them another may be the course to go. I’ve received some very high tips from people who wanted me to redo their drinks. Additionally, say you do make a drink wrong (not talking about adding cherries or anything retarded like that), you may want your customer to let you know that you put the wrong thing in your drink because bottles can get mixed up during the rush and it is highly illegal to serve something to someone they did not order.

All the people with Bachelors in Business Administration, congrats (not being sarcastic). I got mine years ago and using what I’ve learned from that at the bar has provided me with more success than anything else; such as, “The customer always comes first.” (They don’t have to be right, but if you aren’t trying to please them your business will never be as efficient and effective as it can be)

My biggest complaint about bartenders is when they think they are gods gift and their bar is dirty or the ash trays are gross. I can say that this involves 98% of my experience in bars. Call me crazy, but I really like to have my beer faced towards me so I can see that it’s the beer I ordered and not just slapped down on a napkin with expectation of a great tip.


wow some really good comments here. I can add to the #10 things you should not do to annoy bartenders,
is try to hook up with the bartender. Im sure some of them don’t mind when I leave them fat tips but rarely (never) have hooked up with one ;(

Bartenders seem consistently inattentive to waiting customers. They chat with their favorites while others wait. This isn’t about who’s an asshole its just about wanting some service.. when a drink I could make at home for $3 costs $14, part of what I’m paying for is service. If you can’t deliver go find a different job and take your alpha dog attitude and shove it.

Ordering complicated drinks is fine when its slow, but doing this during a rush will slow down the operation of the entire bar in some cases. When I have 10-20 different people in front of me in my corner of the bar it helps out alot when your drink is fast to make. If you order something that takes a while to make you are being rude to the other bar patrons that just want a quick drink. I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my trade and will not give you a shitty drink as it would reflect upon me to be shitty. Don’t go to the bar and order mojitios, super particular bloody marys and other things that will take me away from the rest of my customers. You can say “its your job” as I see always in comments for these type of things and it is my job, but its also my job to take care of everyone not just you. The people getting negative about these lists should either take the lesson that is being told(which will only get you better service) or stay the fuck home and drink.

Another thing that should be added to #7 is waving your hands wildly in my face, we saw you when you got to the bar we don’t need you to reinforce your presence. Bothering the barback for drinks, we know that this might be confusing to know who the bartender is sometimes but usually the guy who is washing dishes, stocking the alcohol and not taking drink orders is the barback. Another point to that is bothering the bartender that is trying to stock or wash dishes when there are other bartenders around (basically don’t bother people when they are doing these things it needs to be done to continue to work smoothly). I used to be a dick to customers when I first started but have realized that doing this job is basically running an adult day care center and you have to just accept things sometimes. I will not yell at you unless you are being extremely rude, I always repeat the order and if you say yes to what I repeated then you will get that drink. I am a bit hard of hearing due to years of working in basically what is a giant speaker so please speak up(i’m talking to you timid ladies). The number one rule should be just to be patient, you are not the only person in the entire bar ever. I may be making 10 drinks at once for 4 different customers, I may be making the complicated drinks that someone else has ordered, just know that I will get to you. My job is to make sure you are having fun and staying safe.

P.S. When you serve over 300 people a night you have to be bright dickhead

Oh yeah I forgot, when a bar is crowded and crazy DO NOT come up to the bartender and just immediatly start ordering, we could be doing math, we could be figuring out recipies or who had what. The bar is a line and its not cool to try to cut that line. In the same following when a bartender comes up to you not give up your place to someone else, once again it is a line and you are letting someone else cut now, everyone will be served eventually. Also don’t try to argue about time whether the clock is off or you have been waiting 10 minutes, trust me your concept of time is WAY OFF when you’ve been drinking.

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