Before we dive into all the details of how to become a bartender, I have to ask you, Mr./Ms. aspiring bartender, how did you happen to arrive here?
And I don’t mean to this site or this article? I mean, what has been going through your head in the past few days or weeks which has led you to a decision that bartending might be the life for you?
Sorry to pry, but I like walking down a path together, holding hands (don’t worry, mine are soft and sexy). I like to know who I’m walking with and what their story is, because the stories are the best. Since creating TheRealBarCourse in 2015, it has become the #1 online bartending course for helping people with no experience become a bartender in the shortest time possible.
And since that time, my favorite thing about it are the stories I get to hear from students who never thought it was possible for them to actually learn to bartend online and get their foot in the door.
Should You Go to Bartending School?
I get this question A LOT. Your first thought when thinking about becoming a bartender is that you need to go to bartending school, which in my opinion (if you know me at all) is a mistake because although they will teach you some knowledge and skills and drink recipes, they cost a fortune and they don’t actually give you the tools and powerful strategies you need in order to actually get hired as a bartender.
You can learn a more in-depth analysis on my thoughts on bartending school here. They are not a bad institution (depending on the school), but they simply don’t provide you with the full suite of tools and strategies you need in order to actually get hired.
Which brings us back to who you are. Are you completely green and new onto the scene? That’s fine. All of us were at one point.
Are you fed up with making minimum wage and finally want a job that actually makes money? I get it. I spent 3 years in college woking retail for minimum wage. In a used CD store. That sold bongs and adult paraphernalia in the back.
Or are you simply a young go-getter who is entering the real job world and wants a job that actually makes money? Good for you!
Or maybe you just want a part time job, but one that actually makes money (Anyone sensing a pattern here?).
Whatever the case may be, I want to know, because this could be a life-changing moment for you and I want to be there cheering you on…
…while holding one of those giant #1 fingers in my left hand and a glass of Whistle Pig Rye swirling in my right hand.
The 7-Steps to Becoming a Bartender
I first wrote a book on the 7 steps to becoming a bartender in 2012, and it is still the #1 selling bartending book on Amazon (you can still go check it out if you want). Since then, I took all that knowledge, put it on steroids and I turned it into more than 45 videos and 100 lessons inside my online bartending course.
The course has been more wildly successful than I ever imagined, and I don’t say that to brag. I’m just humbled and surprised to tell you the truth. The course lays out a plan that you simply don’t find anywhere else.
So here it is, you want to know how to become a bartender?
Good, take your A.D.D. hat off and pay attention for a quick second.
The most important step to becoming a bartender is making a plan beyond just learning a few skills.
What does that mean exactly? It means that becoming a bartender is more than just shaking up martinis and jiggling your ass.
It’s means it’s more than just the skills they teach in 98% of bartending schools. What they are teaching will not help you land the job.
Becoming a bartender is a simple step-by-step process, but it takes discipline and a take-no-shit mindset to see it through to the end, and every single student of mine that has stuck to the plan and saw it through, got the job. EVERY SINGLE ONE.
So what does that include? It’s different than every other video, blog post or bartending school you’ll find on the Internet or elsewhere. Here’s the premise:
- Learn the skills and knowledge you need
- Memorize some drinks (50 – 100 is more than enough)
- Create an awesome cover letter and resume
- Set Goals
- Hit the streets to turn in your cover letters and resumes
- Follow-up, follow-up, follow-up
- Nail the interview (click here to read The Top 7 Most Asked Bartender Interview Questions)
Sure, there’s a bunch of details in between all that (and those details are important) but that’s what it takes. For a more in-depth and detailed lesson on these steps I just listed, you can read How to Become a Bartender [Everything You Need to Know].
Becoming a bartender involves a mindset that supercedes just memorizing 500 drink recipes, which is what all other bartending schools and courses fail to address. The fact is, there is no way you need to memorize 500 drink recipes, so when the school pulls out a file with 2,000 drink recipes, be neither impressed nor intimidated. It’s simply not necessary.
The truth is, inside TheRealBarCourse, we provide you with the top 101 Most Popular Cocktails, as well as the 21 Shots You Must Know, and that’s all you need to get started and get hired. And not even that many to get hired. 50 will get you hired. I kid you not.
In addition, we use my patented Triple Imprint Method for memorizing cocktail recipes and implanting them in your subconscious mind so that you can easily remember them. It’s pretty damn awesome and highly effective.
In the end, it’s why YOU will be getting the job while the traditional bartending school graduate is telling the hiring manager how he knows what goes in a 3-Dollar Hooker Shot because he memorized 2,000 drinks that nobody will ever order.
The fact is, becoming a rock star bartender follows the same premise of anything you do in life in which you want to succeed, which is that you need to have a rock star mindset. You need to draw your line in the sand, create some chaos and get excited.
I’m talking mega-pumped-up excited. Feeding frenzies need blood in order to rile up the waters, and if the water is calm and clear, nothing substantial is ever going to happen. You need to roll up your sleeves, start bleeding, and dive in and wrestle with some sharks.
So get big. And I mean BIG. Big in mind. Big in heart. Big like King Kong. On steroids. And crack. And heroin. And steroids laced with heroin. And crack.
Ok, I got off the rails just a bit there, but sometimes you just got to smack someone out of their slumber to get them moving.
With that said, if you want glimpse into what I do, CLICK HERE to check out TheRealBarCourse, which is unlike any other bartending school or online bartending course you’ll find at an extremely fair and affordable price for the knowledge and lessons you get access to.
And when you order the course it’s delivered directly to your doorstep. By me. With a small kitten included.
Ok, just kidding. The course isn’t delivered to your doorstep. This is the 21st century. You have to download your kitten.
In the end, if you find your path to rock star bartend-ism somewhere else, I’m fine with that too. I’m just here to help, and I want you to succeed.
Best of luck to you.
Dave, The RB