The emergence of the bartender profession

Появление профессии бармена

History of the profession

Bartending is not the oldest profession on earth. There are many documents where this craft is mentioned for the first time, and all of them date back to the second half of the 19th century. One of the brightest and still relevant publications of 1862 became the founder of the modern bar industry.

The most popular version says that the owners of small shops first began to separate the guest and “work” zones during the “Gold Rush,” when brave prospectors actively celebrated their achievements on the banks of gold-bearing rivers. The owners of the establishments began to put up a barrier where they distributed all goods, and that’s how the first bars appeared. Actually, the word “Bar” itself comes from “BARRIER”.

In Russia, of course, there were no bartenders in the 19th or early 20th centuries. The first Soviet bartender who made a tremendous contribution to Russian bar culture, who personally trained several hundred of the first bartenders - Alexander Georgievich Kudryavtsev , who still finds strength, desires and aspirations and trains bartenders in the Bartender Association of the city of St. Petersburg.


The beginning of the 1990s saw a boom in the profession in Russia; by the 2000s, a dozen excellent bartenders appeared. Russian bartenders are starting to perform, and most importantly, win international championships around the world. And by 2021, the top 50 best bars in the World will include two establishments from Russia.

In our country, the profession has developed so quickly, actively, and with pressure that today it is as full-fledged, self-sufficient and important as any other social sphere.

Description and characteristics of the profession

A bartender is not just a person standing behind the bar, he is the soul of the establishment. He immediately controls and implements a fairly large amount of work. Starting from preparing the bar for service, making blanks, filling out working documentation, to the service process itself, sales, increasing the attractiveness of the establishment and its profitability.

If you open hh and look at the job responsibilities for the profession of a bartender, then there are always very vague characteristics, like “communicative, energetic, responsible.” But when you find yourself on the other side of the counter for the first time, you understand why you had to be energetic. During a 12-hour shift, there is often no time not only to sit down, but simply to take a breath. And at the beginning of your journey, you are simply lost from the number of tasks and actions. Then, of course, the bartender begins to properly distribute his time, rationally use the minutes of rest and the main influx of guests.


Modern bartenders and their personal qualities

The personal qualities of a bartender are the most important component of professional activity, because if the work resonates in the heart, if you enjoy doing it, if it fits perfectly into the system of values and personal perception, then, naturally, there will be excellent performance of all work processes.

The modern bartender now is a professional. This is an adult, an accomplished person, who understands a lot in life and accepts it. He looks into the depth, be it the mental depth of the person behind the counter, or the depth of taste and aromas.

Long gone are the days when everyone was hired as a bartender. Medical student? Physicist? Jurisprudence? Welcome to the counter!

No, no, the realities are completely different now. Employers realized that it was simply not profitable for them to hire people who had no idea about the profession, because they “learn”, as a result, in their establishment, from their guests and from their sad experience, they form a general idea about the bar. Now restaurateurs prefer either to train staff within their own walls (if it is a large chain, when the cost of a trained unit of line staff is lower than the cost of selecting applicants) or to hire bartenders with experience, or at least with completed courses.

A bartender today is a person who understands that he has found his calling. He understands that the bar counter is not a temporary shelter on the way to something greater, it is the path itself, the goal itself and life itself.

Yes, the bartender today is a bit of a philosopher. After all, so many destinies were formed, or, on the contrary, parted, before his eyes. He seems to see more people in a shift than many do in days or weeks. He understands people, has a presentiment, and ultimately anticipates their desires. He remembers everyone by name, preferences and is always happy to surprise and satisfy his guests.

What you need to know to become a bartender

First of all , it's hard. Yes Yes. In the literal sense of the word. It is physically difficult and difficult to work as a bartender. It all starts with long-hour shifts, the usual work shift of line personnel inrestaurant 12-14 hours, and if a partner gets sick or staff turnover has overwhelmed your establishment, then there can be up to five such shifts a week. Therefore, you need to be prepared for the fact that you will have to be on your feet for 12 hours. In addition to the legs, it will also be hard on the arms. Of course, the bottles themselves are not very heavy, but 50 liter kegs with beer - yes, cassettes with clean glasses - too. That is why almost all establishments try to have young people work their shifts; of course, bar ladies are used to managing it themselves, but often this is quite difficult.

Secondly , the job of a bartender is working with people. This is a socially oriented job, so if you don’t like people, don’t like to talk, communicate, you should look for another profession.

They say that a bartender is one of the most well-read professions. In essence, this is true, the bartender must be as erudite as possible in almost all areas of life, because in front of him, behind the bar counter, there may be a person from almost any field, and the bartender must be able to carry on a conversation in a familiar, easy way.


Thirdly , working behind the counter is always about aesthetics. A bartender from any movie or poster is an example of taste and brevity. The bartender is the face of the establishment. He is always neat, polite and pleasant to talk to.

A bartender is a unique profession where essentially binary things come together. Creativity and discipline, creativity and responsibility, working with documents and communication skills. The bartender is so good at winning people over that many become real friends. A bartender, as it was said in the famous film “Cocktail,” is a working-class aristocrat.

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