Two Brilliant Ways Bartenders Deal With Drunk Customers

You pick up some sneaky tricks after years on the job
Drunk Guy


If he takes his shirt off and starts looking at you like this, it's time to cut him off. 

Bartenders have to thread a narrow needle: It’s their job to provide alcohol to people who are (often) looking to get a little drunk, but they also have to know when customers are too drunk to be served any more. And when you tell a drunk person that he or she has had too much to drink, don’t be surprised if you find yourself a new worst enemy. So how to bartenders deal with drunk customers who have had too much? This question was posted to Quora, and here’s how some veteran bartenders weighed in:

“If a customer was getting too drunk before cutting them off, I would pour them a non-alcoholic beer and tell them “it’s on the house”. When they were done with that beer, I would then say… “Hey do me a favor.. after this beer have a glass of water, I don’t want you to get a hangover!” Usually in that time frame, they would realize they were getting too drunk and leave. I always preferred this method over cutting people off, as they would resist it. I would try to take steps so they would think that leaving the bar was their idea, not mine.” – Collette Mclafferty

“To stall a person who is over limit without having to cut them off, with mixed drinks, you pour the cocktail mixers as normal, but for the alcohol, you “float” a splash of liquor on the top of the cocktail. The drink then *smells* like booze, which is probably the most important element in making a drunk think they are still drinking, but the actual alcohol content is minimal.” – Michael Chan


Rate this Story