Wednesday, December 31, 2008

What The Hell Is Triple Sec?

Every professional bar and even some home bars have a bottle of triple sec behind it, but what the hell is it? Triple sec is made from dried peel of oranges that are found on Curacao, an island in the Caribbean. It's strong (usually contains 30% alcohol/60 proof). It's a sweetening/flavored agent used in a variety of mixed drinks.

"Sec" in French means dry. Dry then indicates a lack of sweetness. This doesn't apply though when you are talking about triple sec. In the case of triple sec, it just means triple distilled.

Most of the time it's also colorless unless if it's blue curacao which is basically blue-colored triple sec. Anytime you hear the term "blue" used in the name of a drink or see that the actual color of a drink is blue, it has blue curacao in it.

Triple sec can come in fancier forms such as Cointreau and/or Grand Marnier. These are considered "top shelf" triple secs (aka: more expensive). Grand Marnier has a slightly yellow/light brown tint to it because it is a cognac-based triple sec. How is that for fancy?

Here is a list of some popular drinks that have triple sec in the recipe:

Long Islands
Adios Motherfuckers (AMF)
Margaritas (Cadillac and Top Shelf)
Mai Tais

Monday, December 29, 2008


New Years Eve is one of those days/nights where every bartender has to work. If you are a working bartender, you know better than to ask for the night off. It's a given that you will work that night. New Years Eve is an amateur night to me anyways. People who don't go out all yearlong are all out on New Years. I hate the crowds. I hate it when stuff is overpriced. I hate dealing with amateurs. I would rather make money than spend it on a night like NYE.

The really good parties don't start until well after midnight anyways....long after most of the amateurs have gone home.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

I'm Not A Delivery Service

I appreciate when customers come into the bar and want to buy drinks for other customers. It's a nice gesture. It's thoughtful. It also increases my sales, which helps to increase my tip amount at the end of the night.

What I find really annoying is when I am taking an order from a customer, in particular a male customer, and they spot a female whom they find attractive standing at the bar (usually all the way at the other end of the bar from where the customer is placing his order with me). After he places his order with me, he then tells me..."And I want to buy whatever she is drinking." as he points to the woman standing all the way at the opposite side of the bar. This is when I grit my teeth and pose a fake smile. I have to keep my cool and not let these little things get to me. I now realize that this whole order transaction is going to take a lot longer than I originally anticipated. Plus, it screws up my order taking flow. Now I have to walk all the way to the other side of the bar, ask the woman what she wants, explain to her that the nice guy at the other end of the bar wants to buy her a drink, make her the drink and then close up the rest of the transaction with the well intentioned male customer. His sorry attempt at landing some ass at the bar ends up costing me more tip making and order taking time than it's worth. Plus, most of the time the pretty woman at the end of the bar isn't alone. All her friends are standing right behind her. So when I go to ask her what she is drinking, she then takes that as a green light to place her order with me for her and all of her friends.

Oh man. The chaos that ensues.

So please guys (Yes, I am addressing the guys directly on this one because I have yet to have a woman customer do this to me), if you are going to buy someone else a drink, ask them themselves what they would like and then deliver the drink to them directly. Don't make your bartender the middleman/middlewoman. Besides, going up to a woman directly and asking her what she would like to drink and letting her know that you want to buy her a drink is a surefire way to get a conversation going. That is what you are seeking, isn't it? It also shows confidence (which women love) and you will be saving your bartender a whole lot of unnecessary legwork.

Thanks guys!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

I Found Out Why Patron Is So Popular...

Thanks to T-Pain and his "Bartender" song:

I like the bartender
(Oh if you're lookin' for me)
I'm at the bar with her
(Uh-huh, OK)
I like the bartender
(Yeah if you're lookin' for me)
I'm at the bar with her
(Oh uh-huh, OK)

Got a brand new girl so I'm feeling all good inside
(all good inside)
Feel like I put some brand new 24's on a brand new ride
(on a brand new ride)
Triple shot of patron on the rocks with little bit a lime
(with a little bit a lime)
I'm just keeping it real
Baby still working at the club so I'm getting in free
(so I'm getting in free)
Wednesday night I'm on the list T-Pain plus 3
(T-Pain plus 3)
Every time I hit the spot baby girl taking care of me
(taking care of me)
How do you think I feel?

**I want to know how ordering a triple shot of Patron on the rocks makes you keep it real T-Pain? Just curious.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

The Customer Who Order A Bellini On A Thursday Night

The other night, I had a guy order a Bellini. I kind of wondered why he was ordering a brunch drink on a Thursday night, but whatever. To each his own.

What made me raise an eyebrow is when he asked me to make it strong. For those of you who don't know, a Bellini is just peach schnapps and champagne, served in a champagne flute. I was curious in how he wanted me to make his drink any stronger. I figured the only way I could make the drink any stronger is if I made two.

I decided to ignore his request and made the drink just as I make all my other Bellinis. Something tells me that this guy had no idea what he was really ordering in the first place.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Ordering Beer

When people order a beer at the bar, I generally ask them two questions:

"Would you like bottled or draft beer?"
"Import or domestic?"

For most beer drinkers, they already know what they want to drink. Ask them these two questions and you wont have to rattle off your entire beer inventory. But every now and then, there will be customers who aren't really sure what they want. Once you recite every single type of beer you have in stock, they will then ask you for a beer you didn't list. It happens all the time. Why? Why?

Why are some people so stupid?

My usual response to someone who orders a beer we don't have after I have listed off every single beer we have in the house:

"I didn't say we had blank beer".

I will then just stand in front of the customer and wait patiently for them to place their order. I secretly enjoy it when other customers overhear the conversation taking place with said clueless customers. When those customers nearby give me the "Are you kidding me? You have to deal with that crap?" look, I feel slightly validated. After the transaction, I happily I proceed to help the next person who actually knows what he/she wants to drink.

I Want To Know...

Why is it my problem when someone takes your drink? I don't know how many times a night I hear people bitching to me about how someone took their drink. Since when did it become my responsibility to watch your shit? I have enough things to worry about over the course of the night. I have a bar to run, drinks to make, customers to please and money to make. I can't be worried about you not keeping track of your own drink. Sorry, but if you can't keep tabs on your own cocktail, then maybe you didn't deserve to even have it in the first place.

The best part about this is these people that bitch about losing their drink expect me to make them another one for free. They EXPECT me to. These are probably the same people who order tap water and don't tip.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Tap Water

Do people who order tap water tip?


I just wanted to make that perfectly clear. People who order tap water at the bar are not a huge priority to me in the whole scheme of things. That's why you will see me use the sink to pour glasses of water instead of using my soda gun. The facet runs a lot faster than the tap water on my gun does. The faster I can get the cheap asses out of my face, the better.

One time long ago, a guy got in my face about not wanting to pay five bucks for a bottled water (People always think I have something to do with the way drink prices are set at the bar). I told him he could go to the bathroom and get water from the sink. As you could imagine, he didn't like my comment very much.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Hold The Ice?

Every now and then I get someone who comes into the bar and orders a drink with light or no ice. I am not talking about the people who order a shot of something "neat" (aka without ice and in a nice sipping glass). I am talking about the people who think that the less ice they have in their drink, the more alcohol their drink is going to have. I have news for these people out there. If you order a drink without ice, you are going to get the same amount of alcohol. Your drink is just going to have more non-alcoholic mixer/juice in it and it's going to be warm. Gross. And I am going to assume you are cheap. Weak.

So about a month ago, I had this thuggish-type guy at my bar who ordered a Tokyo Tea without ice. A Tokyo Tea is a green Long Island: vodka, gin, rum, triple sec, Midori and sweet and sour mix garnished with a lemon wedge. The drink alone isn't exactly what I would consider tasty or refreshing so without ice it would seem to me that the drink would be downright disgusting. But hey, who am I to judge? Different strokes for different folks. I am the bartender. I will make you whatever you want to drink and charge you appropriately for it. Just make sure to leave me a tip and we're cool.

My thug guy must have liked his drink because he ordered two more over the course of the night and paid for each one of them himself. You know those types (mainly girls but I have seen guys do it too) who order their first drink and then spend the rest of the night getting someone else to sponsor their liquid thirst. If this guy was a cheap bastard on a budget, I didn't know it because he paid for all of his drinks and tipped me pretty decently.

Who am I to hate on a guy who enjoys warm Tokyo Teas? This guy just was out of the norm because most people who order drinks without ice are in fact cheap.

Monday, December 1, 2008


On Saturday night, I saw a number of guys sipping drinks out of martini glasses (like the one pictured here) with a straw. It was the weirdest thing. I had never seen anyone use a straw to drink out of a martini glass before. Not even those annoying women who order apple martinis. ;)

Just wanted to share my weekend twilight zone moment.