I have to admit, I enjoy working alone. I am responsible for anything that goes on or goes wrong. As long as I have a barback and at least 1 cocktailer, I can handle the rest of the lounge solo. When it's busy, it's a luxury to have another pair of hands and eyes to run with.
I have been fortunate enough to have had a right arm just as strong as myself. I mean we worked together seamlessly. Never bumped into each other. It was almost as if we were dancing behind the bar.
Tickets come up, I grab them and start filling the orders. People sit at the bar, he greets tham, gives them menus, and takes the drink order. after I do the server orders, he lets me know the cocktails he needs and I get them done.
While I serve the drinks to the customers, he goes out on the floor to greet a table, and I take the bus tub to the dish pit. By the time I return, he's doing tickets for servers. We were like Batman and Robin. We were true bar super heroes!
It was so easy and flowed so well when we teamed up. Ironically, this gentleman was more of a chef that knew how to bartend and not a "true" bartender. I gotta admit though, he was the perfect yin to my yang. At the time, I was coming from high volume service. I was comfortable making 2 to 6 drinks at a time, but not accustomed to customer service. He was accustomed to customer service, but wasn't quite as fast as myself as far as building drinks.
I felt comfortable with splitting tips with him because we did equal work. He actually got me in with the company. We were a great team and we could use him at the job now to continue in the evening what I started during the afternoon. We were quite "The Dynamic Duo".
Tony Hardwick is an accomplished Atlanta-based bartender who currently tends bar at Table 1280 at High Museum, is a Brand Ambassador for Marker's Mark Distillery and is the CEO of Precision Master Bartending Services - private bartending company for private, home and corporate events.
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