How to be a Good Customer Part IV: Bartender Edition

I have been bartending at my restaurant for a little over a year now, and I have some great, and not so great, stories about my time spent behind the bar. Strangely enough, probably 90% of the customers I get at the bar are really laid back, great talkers, and just there to enjoy a few drinks and if time allows, converse with the bartender. However, there have definitely been a few bar attendees that went above and beyond the realm of acceptable notions, actions, words, and requests. With that, I present to you my How to be a Good Customer Part IV: Bartender Edition!

“Can you make my drink a little stronger please? On the house?”

Let’s just get this one out of the way immediately. I am more than happy to put a little extra liquor in your drink. I understand that maybe you’ve had a difficult day, and a little extra alcohol in your drink is needed. Understandably so, restaurants can sometimes change the normal recipe for a drink and skimp a bit on the measurements. Unfortunately, my job dictates that I follow the recipes to an exact measurement. If you are willing to pay for any extra alcohol, I will gladly add as much as you like. However, asking me to pour extra in your drink and not charge you for it just isn’t going to happen. A bank teller won’t just put an extra $50 in your checking account. The cashier at the grocery store doesn’t just give you that frozen pizza for free. Why should I do it?

“That’s not how I make the drink (or how my restaurant makes it)!”

I like having a job because I have bills to pay. My restaurant calls for specific measurements and types of liquor in the drinks. We have an entire book of recipes for a myriad of drinks, and even if I don’t have all of them memorized, I will use the book to make drinks. If you want your drink made a different way, I’ll be happy to accommodate you, but the price is most likely going to change because I have to use different liquors. We keep an inventory of all alcohol, and if it’s rang in incorrectly, or poured disproportionately, the count will be off, and I will be in trouble. My restaurant is not your restaurant or your house; we have our own way of doing things.

If you order it, you buy it!

One of the few things that have been happening more and more recently is a customer ordering a drink, not liking it, and sending it back while refusing to pay for it. One of the most expensive items a restaurant orders is alcohol. Granted, most restaurants make great profit from alcohol, but does this not absolve the customer of responsibility. When you order a drink, taste it, send it back, and refuse to pay for it, that is wasted alcohol. If you order a drink, and it’s made incorrectly, I will gladly make the right thing for you without charging for the first drink. Conversely, when you order a drink, or food, with the explicit understanding of exactly what it is you ordered, the responsibility is now on you to finish that drink. When I order alcohol somewhere, and I don’t like the flavor of it (although I should have known I wouldn’t like it, and ordering it was irresponsible on my part), I give the drink to somebody else or just suck it up and drink it. I ordered it, so I’m paying for it.

Don’t you dare snap at me.

I’m serious. If you snap at me, I will go off on you and ask you to leave. Do not snap at me. I’m not a dog.

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