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Hey Bar Manager!

So, what makes a good Bar Manager, what qualities are sought out for bar managers. There are thousands of Bars in Toronto, and in the world. But what makes one Bar Manager excel more then the other? These are the qualities to go after!

The Desire to Learn and Grow

No matter how much experience you have, there’s always more to learn. But a manager who is unwilling to learn from new experiences will miss out on opportunities to become better – and risk alienating their team and staff.

If you’re looking to transition into a bar manager role, than this is important to take in! There will be a lot to learn in the new role, and an attitude that welcomes new information along with a willingness to train and learn will be appreciated – and help you become a stronger member of the team.

Ability to Coach

Great managers know how to use positive reinforcement and redirection instead of negativity and accusation. They might use the “compliment sandwich” or be skilled at phrasing bad behavior as opportunities for improvement.

This is a very difficult industry to work in, and a manager who can gain and keep the respect of his/her team is key. This is an important step in building the respect of your team.

Lead by Example

“Do as I say, not as I do” is not a good management strategy. In fact, it’s a great way to alienate your team. Instead, be willing to do the work – and don’t ask others to do what you are unwilling to do yourself.

Toilet backed up? Dishwasher goes down? Need to send someone to the store for more mint? Your co workers need to know that they can depend on you to have their back on the busiest shifts – even if the task itself isn’t glamorous.

Willingness to Collaborate

The hardest part of being a manager is dealing with people – but it’s also an opportunity to truly bring together your team and make great things happen for your bar. You’re likely going to be working with many different people with different personality types, goals and aspirations. Take the time to get to know your staff’s individual personal goals, and look for opportunities to help them develop.

Is the busser considering a career as a social media consultant? Maybe she can help with the bar’s Facebook page. Is the bartender looking to open his own bar someday? Consider giving him a glimpse of the financials so he can see how things work on paper.

Investing a bit of your time collaborating with your staff will show them you care about them as people, increase their buy-in, improve the guest experience, and might even let you delegate some of your own work!

Demonstrate Fairness

At some point, you will need to make a hard decision that benefits one person over another. As a manager, it’s incredibly important that you are seen as unbiased and even-keeled. Distribute the shifts in a way that makes sense and accommodates people’s schedules and preferences. Navigate vacation requests equitably. Distribute the workload in a way that is justifiable. And be able to communicate your decision-making process as well.

The quickest way to kill a great culture is to start choosing “sides”. Whether you are setting the schedule, dealing with customer complaints or talking with vendors, if you can help create a “whole team” mindset through demonstrating fairness, it will strengthen your team dynamic and pay off in spades.

Managing a bar or restaurant is all about managing people. Great managers set themselves apart by balancing their roles as leaders and servers – creating a solid team that’s moving toward to one goal the art of customer service.
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Negroni

1010557_270532919770183_2082113488_nThe Negroni
This is no candy colored drink to mess with. Most people when they see the infamous Negroni think of a sweet child’s drink but this is far from the truth. This Italian drink is favorite amongst the hairy chested culture. No but in all seriousness this drink is much more complex and amazed then most think.
Composed by three ingredients perfectly poured together 

Campari
An alcoholic liqueur, considered an apéritif, obtained from the infusion of herbs and fruit in alcohol and water. It is a bitter characterised by its dark red colour. Think bitter orange peels but delicious. 

Sweet Vermouth (Sweet oh god Sweet not Dry)
Vermouth is an aromatized, fortified wine flavored with various botanicals. The modern versions of the beverage were first produced in the mid- to late 18th century in Turin, Italy.

Gin
Gin is a spirit which derives its predominant flavour from juniper berries. From its earliest origins in the Middle Ages, gin has evolved from a herbal medicine to an object of commerce in the spirits industry.

Perfectly balanced with 1oz each to create an amazing experience loved by all. Even candy loving individuals come on its Halloween soon we cant leave them out. 

Perfectly garnished with an orange peel or flamed orange zest.

Now many of you are probably wondering i never heard of a negroni well at BartenderOne we teach you all this plus so so so much more. Check out the BartenderOne 101 class for a start in the industry or enroll in the MasterClass to become one of the next best bartenders in Canada.

http://www.bartenderone.com/bartendingcoursestoronto

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The Header6 THINGS YOU NEED FOR EVERY SHIFT
  So your about to head off to work and you want to be prepared way beyond believe well BartenderOne and CSB got you covered. Here are the 6 things you need to bring to every shift for smooth sailing and of course amazing tips. 

Cocktail Shaker/Tin 
  Now we have all watched James Bond that’s for sure. And if not there’s your bartending homework right there. The infamous Shaken not stirred can only be done with one object and that’s the cocktail shaker or tin as most people refer to it as. This usually 28oz cocktail shaker is a bartenders best friend it allows you to smash, shake and mix any drink known to man. Its also is an essential tool in flair for nesting which is when you catch the bottle in the tin. Now you might think how could this one tin do so much well then I would reply with why you thinking so much about a tin and just bring it to the bar. Trust me you need it.

Bar Spoon
  Now, what happens when James Bond doesn’t come by the bar and we need to actually stir a cocktail well you sure as hell aren’t putting your finger in there and going to town. There’s a lovely tool called the bar spoon which allows you to do said task. This allows for the fanatic martini expert to be pleased with your stirring skills, as well this amazing tool works great for layering shots and drinks allowing for a whole new level of engagement for the guest. So don’t forget and grab that spoon next time before you go to the bar. 

Jigger
  So you go to your brand new bar and your so excited because you know how to free pour and you’re ready to go but your bar manager just randomly decided that oh we need to clean the spouts and takes them all. Now what do you do free pour without spouts, no silly grab that jigger and get jigging. Jiggers are an amazing tool for measurement and allow for you to be accurate every single time but more importantly they allow you to be ready to bartend even if there are no spouts. And lets be honest what’s not more classy then a bartender and there jigger.

Hawthorne Strainer 
  Now I don’t know about you but not everyone likes getting huge chunks of ice and food tossed in there face when drinking there cocktail, if you do good on you. But for the most of the world, we need to strain that shizzle. And how do we do that well with our Hawthorne Strainer of course! Hawthorne strainers are perfect for a tough bar night because they just make your job that much easier and when you have your own you don’t have to worry about where its been or if its clean so why not just grab yours and go.

Speed blade
  Now the bars packed you have over 100 people ready for drinks and one beautiful lady comes by and asks for 20 beers for table 7 and you think to your self thank god. You go to the beer and realize you don’t have a speed blade. What you gonna do pop all those bottle tops off with your tin now that’s going to take along time, isn’t it. Wish you had a speed blade bottle opener well next time make sure to bring one with you so that 20 beers becomes a 20-second affair instead of an hour. As well come on its called a speed blade how much cooler can you get.

Corkscrew
  Now I don’t know about you but I like tips, they make me money and they make me happy. You wanna know what has a great tip to drink ratio that’s wine. But if your the dummy that forgets to bring there corkscrew to work you won’t be the one getting those tips that’s for sure. Corkscrews allow you to do two things deal with wine efficiently and effectively. Plus you can rack those wine tips up fast.

Now if you don’t have these tools don’t sweat it BartenderOne has got you set all you got to do is call us and come pick your stuff up as simple as that. 
(416) 461-4441 
Or come walk on in at 95 King Street East, Toronto Ontario
jiggerphoto

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Hot off the heels of the “Made with Love Toronto Qualifiers,” meet Amy S. Amy is a bartender at Marche Restaurant in Downtown Toronto. Wanting to sharpen her skills and broaden her knowledge, Amy took the International Bar Chef Certification (IBC) in 2015. Speaking about the course, Amy says: “The class went way beyond my high expectations and gave me a new appreciation for the detailed aspects of Mixology. My instructor was engaging, knowledgeable and interactive. The material was not overwhelming, although some classes did require learning a bit of Chemistry which was actually a lot of fun! I really enjoyed the blind taste tests as well, and learning the history behind the main spirits groups. At the end of the course, we were required to put our new found knowledge to use, and were asked to create a cocktail menu. I enjoyed IBC so much, I picked up skills I use every day. Given the chance, I would definitely do it all over again!”

Amy’s signature cocktail is a “Longanesa Manhattan,” a Filipino inspired cocktail made with smoked Longanesa sausage.

 

Screen Shot 2016-01-29 at 10.50.18 AM                                                                                             Amy competes with some of the city’s finest Bartenders at Made With Love

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The Allure of The Classic Cocktail

If your drink isn't up to your standards, send it back!

 

When I first started working in a bar, my first job was in a place that had a Speakeasy theme (back in the late 80s.)  I was in my late teens and it seemed very new and exciting and glamorous to be surrounded by all these fancy cocktails with names like: “Golden Cadillac,” “Iron Butterfly” and  “Mexican Ferrari.”  Thankfully you never really hear about those cocktails anymore. There were, however, certain drinks that seemed to have an almost hallowed status: the Rusty Nail, Manhattan or Old Fashioned.  Almost thirty years on,  just like the thirty years before, these cocktails still hold their place on cocktail menus around the globe.  Honestly, I think it was being exposed to this world of “fine drinking” that gave me the hospitality bug; the handsome Bartenders loved making these drinks because they appreciated the opportunity to employ their skill at making a perfect cocktail. 

With the reemergence of  Cocktail Culture, there are still lots of people who look down on “mixology”.  However, when you have worked alongside bartenders who can barely open a bottle of beer as I have, you really grow to appreciate the bartender who has an informed repertoire, who can modify an ingredient, or ingredients , ultimately creating something  special and memorable .

http://drinks.seriouseats.com/2013/05/25-essential-cocktails-everyone-should-know-cocktail-101-easy-mixed-drink-recipes-classic-cocktail-guide.html

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Maybe you should just head straight to the bar for your next team-building event?

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Click here to watch a team-building workshop in action:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3iBoNGV_YWU

Is your workday in need of more open communication, creativity and positive motivation?
Are you looking for new ways to spark innovation and strengthen team dynamics?
Would you like to know how to spread the happiness of happy hour throughout your whole organization?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you’re probably ready to introduce a little happy hour into your 9 to 5! 

Bar Chefs know that different spirits, liqueurs, sweeteners, and citrus combine to make a mouth-watering cocktail, just like different personalities, skill sets and expertise combine to make up a successful team.  Understanding these synergies, and how the ingredients in a cocktail (and a team) work harmoniously together have tremendous parallels when you consider why a well-made cocktail tastes so delicious, and how the strengths of each team member combine to achieve a common objective.

When you motivate people to pool their talents in a team environment, they will perform at their best individually and as team players.  So whether you’re launching a new product, tackling a difficult company transition or building a perfect martini waterfall, you’ll want to make sure the team is as strong as possible!  Here are some of the reasons that building and strengthening internal teams is so important to the success of an organization:

 

  1. Relationships are strengthened,
  2. Lines of communication are opened,
  3. Creativity is stimulated,
  4. New ways of strategizing and solving challenges are discovered,
  5. Whiners, complainers and hidden agendas are eliminated.

 

Working on the premise that happy staff are productive staff (and most everyone is happy when they’re enjoying a cocktail or even a mocktail), make sure that your team-building workshops are fun-filled as this is a common language the entire team will understand!

 

The BartenderOne team (founded by award-winning flair bartender and master mixologist Gavin MacMillan) are experts in bringing people together in a fun, engaging way, to build team dynamics and increase productivity – offering everything from general “Get Into the Spirit” and “Rockin’ Mocktails” workshops to events focused on specific beverage types (e.g. “Let’s Get Hopped Up” Beer workshops and “Buena Barista” Coffee Workshops).

 

 

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Build! Shake! Stir!

 

 

 

What can I get you?

 

 

Whether you’re at a bar to meet friends or to meet new ones, the drinks that are being served are either Built, Shaken or Stirred….. but what’s the difference and why does it make a difference?

Lets break it down….

Built drinks are things like a Rum and Coke or a Vodka with Club Soda – Glass-Ice-Alcohol-Mix-Garnish and Straw, EASY!!!

Stirred drinks are things like a Negroni or a Manhattan – Mixing Glass-Spirit-Ice-Stir-Strain into appropriate glass

Shaken drinks are things like a Cosmopolitan or a Whiskey Sour – Shaking glass-Mix-Spirit-Ice-Shake-Strain into appropriate glass

Built drinks are the easiest of the three and 60% of drinks in a busy nightclub are made like this. What about the other 40% of drinks?

20% of drinks would be BEER!!! After that everything else is either shaken or stirred.

 

Bartenders all over the world have their own method of shaking and stirring with their own style and panache. With proper training you learn that although Ice is your friend in a lot of cocktails one doesn’t want to OVER dilute drinks with improper use of our frozen friend H2O. Whether stirring or shaking a cocktail ice should always be added to the mixing glass AFTER the ingredients have been added, this will minimize the dilution and result in a better cocktail. Stirring is a technique, usually reserved for ‘Spirit-forward’ cocktails (cocktails without any non-alcoholic ingredients) and is all about preparing a drink with ice to both chill and dilute the drink without bruising the spirit. Shaking is the most fun way of making a cocktail and has been taken to unbelievable levels of style by bartenders who want to impress their guests. A good shake can be the difference between a great drink and a happy guest or a bad one and a disappointed guest. Shaking not only chills a cocktail, dilutes it and mixes the ingredients together but it can also introduce air, texture or ‘mouth-feel’ to a libation. With the addition of egg whites to a cocktail like an Amaretto sour, when shaken can dramatically change the dynamic of the feeling that is experienced when sipping on it.

 

Question: Whats the best method to use?

Answer: It all depends on what drink you’re making.

 

So, grab your shaking tins and bar spoons and figure out how you are going to build, shake and stir with passion, style and your own little twist.

 

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Wake up and smell the Coffee

lDid you know that famous saying is actually accurate? As it turns out, our sense of smell shuts down during sleep. The sense of smell, or “olfaction”, is the first sense we use at birth and is the sense most closely linked to the brain. Some of life’s simplest pleasures are based on the sense of smell which is central to the ability to taste. And what aroma is more  identifiable than a freshly brewed cup of  coffee?   We all know not all coffee tastes the same, or possesses the same flavour characteristics, but why? The study of coffee is constantly evolving.  There are quite a few top knotch classes in Toronto however many don’t run in the summer months.  Buena Barista is a year round class that recently welcomed Roxanne Ramnarine as its new instructor.”Roxy” brings a wealth of knowledge and passion for the mighty bean. We hear she has a few fun tricks up her sleeve this summer to get your senses working!

Coffee anyone?

Coffee anyone?

https://www.distractify.com/reasons-why-you-should-be-drinking-coffee-right-now-1197926615.html

 

 

 

 

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What is the Importance of Ice

 

 

Enticing yes...

 

Ice is…. An Integral Component of Every cocktail, under the general definition of a cocktail being “an alcoholic beverage which includes: Sugar, Bitters and Water (Ice)”. Whether it is being used to chill a cocktail, mix ingredients together, for dilution and water content or simply just to take up space in a glass – Ice is just as important as the drink itself.

 Bartending classes teach, about how much Ice a bartender should use in each cocktail being made, both in cocktails with a mixer for example a Whiskey Sour or even something as simple as a Rum and Coke and in ‘spirit- forward’ cocktails such as a Negroni or a Manhattan. These applications are concerned with ice in the final product, but what about drinks that are served with no ice?

Question: What does ‘Neat’ mean?

Answer: NO ICE!!! A drink served neat, would be a shot of liquor that has had no contact with Ice. It’s gone straight from the bottle to the glass.

So what does ‘Straight-Up’ mean? Ever had a Cosmopolitan or a Vodka Martini with Ice in it? I doubt it. Now think about this…..Have you ever seen a bartender shake or stir a drink, then strain the drink into a glass with no ice? This cocktail would be called a ‘Straight-Up’ cocktail.

So to simplify, both ‘Straight-Up’ and ‘Neat’ drinks are served without Ice. The difference is that ‘Straight-Up’ cocktails have had contact with ice at some point leading up to being served.

As mentioned earlier, Ice can be used to take up space in a glass. “Why wouldn’t I just use a smaller glass?” I can hear you all asking. Have you ever had a Mojito served straight-up or in a short glass with no Ice? Crushed Ice is used in the classic Mojito recipe, because not only does it keep the drink ‘Ice” cold, it takes up space in the glass allowing the drink to contain less liquid, but still appear to be a tall, grande, gesture from your favourite bartender.

Egg whites are becoming a commonly used ingredient in a whole range of different libations. Just like pineapple juice, the egg whites will emulsify under heavy shaking or whisking creating a foam. The Ice used in the shaker tin almost acts as a whisk and helps the process of emulsification during shaking, in such cocktails as the Whiskey Sour or the Gin Fizz.

Question: How important is ‘Dilution’?

AnswerIn many cases, it is very important.

Many cocktail recipes include a shake or a stir, these are for both mixing the drink, making it cold and dilution.

Look out soon for the up-and-coming ‘Build, Shake, Stir’ blog.

Also, take a look at our molecular mixology program which will give you the lowdown on both liquid Nitrogen and Dry-Ice

 

 

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Quest for the Best New Bartender in Toronto is coming!

Quest for the Best new Bartender in Toronto is happening on August 13th, 2015!

Check out these bartenders in action as they compete for the title of:

Best New Bartender in Toronto!

Jeong Ho Lim

David Miguel

Joanna Oliver

Rashi Gupta

Eder Sanchez

Srirag Babu

Jeremy Gui

Bartenders, your cocktail recipe must be submitted AT LEAST 48 hours before the event starts!

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