Bartending is taken up as a hobby by some people, and is a career choice for others. Either way, it is very important to learn the ropes before setting out on an actual brewing and mixing adventure. The best bartenders are those who know where all the alcohol is kept and do not even need to bat an eyelid to find what they are looking for, while they can simultaneously engage a customer in conversation or grab their attention with some interesting moves.
Bartending is an art in which the bartender is supposed to serve the customer whilst entertaining them as well. This requires special skills that is everyone's cup of tea. There are many people who just cannot seem to get it right. It takes subtlety and guile, which unfortunately is not as common as it seems. The elementary lessons teach one how to captivate the customer and not mess up the requested drink at the same time.
The basic requirement is an in-depth knowledge about all the various cocktails, mocktails, and drinks that people commonly ask for. The bartender must know what goes in these cocktails, and what proportion they must be mixed in. Everything else is secondary.
A few tricks and moves that form an integral part of the basics of bartending, and every aspiring bartender must be an expert at, have been mentioned below.
Every cocktail that carries a lot of different ingredients requires to be shaken well in order to get these ingredients mixed up properly. Bartending basics begin with teaching bartenders how to shake these cocktails in the right manner. Mixing the right amount of ice is also vitally important.
Right after shaking the cocktail, it is straining it that becomes important. Carrying this out in the right manner and ensuring that there are no floating pieces of ice is essential. Straining basics take some time to master, as there are many different types of strainers that can be made use of.
The next part is stirring, and many bartenders tend to mess up a drink by stirring it in the wrong manner. At each step, condensation is taking place on the glass, and it is the stirring that removes the effects of this condensation. Stirring it the right way also helps prevent extreme dilution of the drink.
This is important for cocktails that are made by mixing multiple liqueurs. The bartender must know the weights of each ingredient and must also know how to pour the ingredients down in the right manner, so as to make it float above the heavier ones. This is a part of the basics that takes the most time to master.
The flavor of some select liqueurs is enhanced by setting a flame on the surface of the drink. This is something that must be handled with caution and should be carried out in the right manner. The basics teach bartenders around the world which liqueurs taste better after being set alight.
As mentioned before, it is crucial for every bartender to know the exact ingredients that go into each cocktail. He cannot sit with a book of beverages and drink recipes in front of him and then refer to it at the bar. This knowledge about various cocktail recipes can only be gained by studying the most popular cocktails that people would usually opt for. Learning it is not as easy as it sounds, and there are many things that an aspiring bartender must familiarize himself with.
Some bartenders like to entertain the customer by flipping the bottles and tossing them up in the air. This is known as flair bartending and it should only be practiced by seasoned and experienced bartenders. There is a very high probability that the bottle will just fall and break, leaving no one impressed. A lot of practice must go into this before it is actually implemented.
Bartending basics can be taught to just about anybody with a keen interest in it. It is a very interesting hobby and an equally interesting career choice, and the best bartenders will always be in high demand. If this hobby interests you, you must read all you can on the subject, before actually trying it for yourself.