Rules to Drink By: 10 Etiquette Tips for the Bar
We've all been there. We walk into a crowded bar on a Saturday night and immediately start to make a game plan. How can I get to the bar and order a drink without shoving, stepping on or cutting in front of anyone? Should I yell at the bartender? Should I wave my arms wildly to get noticed?
Photo by Ed Schipul Eat, drink and be merrier with these tips.
Or maybe being polite isn't even on your mind. Maybe you just want a drink no matter what you have to do to get it. I think we've all been there too.
In case you're not sure which route to take to keep the bartenders and other customers happy and also to get yo' bad self a drink, I've compiled a list of bar etiquette tips. With the help of local bartenders and patrons, I've come up with ten things that you must do (or not do) to make sure everyone has a good experience. And to make sure everyone is able to get sufficiently hammered, 'cause that's important too.
10. Know your surroundings
If you're looking to sit at the bar and have an intimate conversation with your friend, don't go to a popular bar on a Friday night. You'll be frustrated yelling over the din of orders coming at you, and other patrons will be frustrated that you're just sitting there, taking up space at the bar. And don't even think about hanging your giant purse on the back of a chair so others can't reach the bar without knocking it all over the place. It's certainly OK to sit at the bar for a little while, but share the space. Make sure you give others the opportunity to lean over and steal a garnish as well.
9. Don't steal garnishes
Yeah, I was totally kidding about leaning over and stealing garnishes. Don't do it! There's a reason they're behind the bar. No one wants your grubby hands all over their maraschino cherries and lime slices. Also, it can be disconcerting for a bartender to catch someone reaching over the counter out of the corner of her eye. If your drink doesn't have enough lime juice, just ask the bartender for some more. If you're hungry and want an olive to much on, politely request one. A bartender might not say anything if you help yourself, but he or she won't be happy with you.