Paying for water is bad business.
You are a bartender. You're not an entertainer. You're not part of the "show." You're not there to impress the hipsters as a "mixologist” (too many bartenders fall into this cute little trap –especially at some of the trendier places in town). Your job as a bartender is to take care of your customers. You’re running through a checklist of 10 things every time someone approaches the bar. Do they look young? Check ID. Have I checked their ID’s before? Yeah. What did I pour them for their last round? Rum and diet. How many did he have so far? This is his 4th in about an hour –he looks like he’s feeling it and he’s sweatin’ balls.
Hey brother, what can I get you? (as I’m grabbing the rum from the speed rail)
2 Rum and diets
You guys want a couple waters too?
Yeah dude, its warm in here!
Happy, well hydrated customers, stay longer, drink more, and therefore tip more. I’ll even call you a SafeRide so you get home without the fear of a DUI and can come back and do it again next week. You making it home safe and happy makes me money – you can be damn sure I’ll take care of my revenue stream.
Don’t fucking charge for water and don’t give bartenders a bad name –if you do, I’ll find you.