While on the surface managing a bar may LOOK easy, it’s not. There is a lot more to having an efficient, controlled and profitable bar than it may appear.
As in dealing with food, there are LOTS of ways to lose money, potentially BIG money at the bar. Spills, waste, overpouring, free drinks, theft and unrecorded sales are just a few of the inherent challenges that are present where ever liquor, beer and wine are served.
We will be adding new content to this section on a regular basis so check back often for new insights and ideas that will help you build a more successful and profitable bar operation.
Breathing Life - Into Your Wine-by-the-Glass Program
Ordering wine by the glass is now an expected option by restaurant patrons. Offering too many choices however, can present challenges. Learn how to evaluate the benefit of a wine preservation system when considering wine service for your startup.
Excuse Me, This Wine Tastes Funny
Is refusing to take back a bottle of wine -- even one that you know is perfectly fine -- important enough to destroy a relationship with an existing customer and a dozen or so of his closest friends?
Bartending Etiquette: Avoiding Gaucheries & Faux Pas
There are unwritten conventions governing professional bar conduct. You know most of them intuitively. Then why is it that so many bartenders consistently step on those conventions (to the detriment of your customers' enjoyment, the bartender's own tips & your bar business)?
Six Proven Practices to Control Your Beverage Costs
Overpouring, spills and waste, mistakes and inadequate pricing structures all contribute to beverage cost control problems. No matter the cause, the only way to keep these costs under control is to have proven systems in place in keys areas that alert you when costs spike. The pathway to consistent, robust beverage profits begins with setting prices and ends with the financial statement - and you must have systems in place for each step along the way.
Inventory Control: The Bedrock of Beverage Profitability
Managing your inventory involves knowing precisely what you have, what you paid for it, where it is and when you sold it. Obtaining this information requires accurately monitoring your inventory from the moment it comes through the back door until the end of the accounting period when it is depleted
How to Create the Ideal Startup Wine List
Creating your first wine list can be a daunting task. Not only is the selection process difficult, but once you decide on your wines, how do you present your list so that the guest can understand your selection? Here are some truly great tips to help you get started
The Power of Suggestion: Boosting Wine-by-the-Bottle Sales
Sure, your cost is typically lower on glass wine, but you tend to take more dollars to the bank with bottles. Also, bottles increase server and bartender interaction with guests, which can drive up check averages. While a server is opening and serving a bottle, he can interact with guests, make menu suggestions, and create opportunities for further sales.
Selling Wine: Most People Don't Prefer Wine in the Bottle, They Prefer It in a Glass
If you consider selling wine by the glass a necessary evil to please guests who are too cheap to buy a bottle, you're not alone. You're wrong, but at least you've got company. Many restaurateurs tolerate but do not promote wine-by-the-glass sales, in belief that these programs generate only a fraction of the revenue reaped by bottle sales. You need to understand how much a wine-by-the-glass program can influence what your customers talk about, taste and buy. And when strategically priced, promoted and stocked, a wine-by-the-glass program can be profitable and a boon to your overall wine sales.
DOWNLOAD: Waste/Spill Tracking Sheet
This form provides the means to track food and bar waste as it occurs. Designed for clipboards, this form can be placed in the kitchen or bar so that re-cooks, spills, and wrong orders can be accounted for.
DOWNLOAD: Bartender Checklists
Use the Bartender Checklists for creating your own unique set of checklists for opening, closing, and maintaining your bar operations. Includes separate daily lists for opening, shift change and closing duties. It also has a weekly checklist for periodic cleaning and maintenance of the bar area and equipment.
DOWNLOAD: Liquor Control Worksheet
Suspect you have a liquor cost problem? Find out for sure and how big of a problem you have by using the Liquor Control Worksheet. This Excel spreadsheet template has helped scores of operators cut their liquor losses and keep their margins in check.
DOWNLOAD: Alcohol Management Program
A comprehensive Alcohol Management Program is essential to providing responsible alcohol service. The material offered in this program is intended to be used as a guide and educational tool to develop a responsible, knowledgeable staff with regard to serving alcoholic beverages.
How to Prevent Internal Theft Behind the Bar
Opportunities are rife for theft behind a bar. Bartenders steal from the bar and its customers because it is easily accomplished, hard to detect, and extremely difficult to prevent on an ongoing basis. The temptations posed by constantly handling large sums of cash and dealing with a liquid inventory can often prove overwhelming.