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Beverage Media
March 2013
a party a round of drinks? There’d be
a massive outbreak of goodwill. Your
clientele will appreciate it more than
you may realize. Why they’d be on the
phone telling their friends what you
did before they got home.
Remote Profit Centers
On busy nights bars often wind up
leaving money on the table in the
form of lost sales. Despite how quickly
your bartenders work, there comes a
point where their sales capacity hits
maximum. One solution is a portable
bar set-up on a patio or lightly traf-
ficked area in the front of the house.
Long gone are the days when your only
alternative was to have your bartend-
ers make drinks behind folding tables
or bulky wood paneled bars. A num-
ber of companies now market sleek,
attractive portable bars designed for
high-volume professional bartending.
They’re easy to set-up and breakdown
and offer a high return on investment.
Better service and higher sales
constitute a win-win.
Cross-Promoting Food
and Beverage
It’s more fun to eat at the bar than
it is to drink in the dining room.
Apparently a lot of consumers
agree because operators are now
serving legions of guests who
prefer to eat not in the formal
setting of the dining room, but at the
informal and lively atmosphere of the
bar. The trend has prompted design-
ers of food and beverage operations to
blur the distinction between a restau-
rant and bar. Likewise, pairing food and
beverages is a highly promotable con-
cept loaded with operational benefits.
For one thing, it generates significantly
higher profit margins than when the in-
dividual items are marketed separately.
Another benefit is that food moderates
the impact of the alcohol on the con-
sumer’s physiology.
Protect Your Cash & Inventory
Sometimes it is the most basic, ha-
bitual procedures that harbor the best
opportunities for profitable fine-tun-
ing. Are your bartenders checking-out
their own cash drawers? That’s argu-
ably an invitation for theft. Bartend-
ers often stash stolen money in their
cash drawers. By closing out the POS
immediately at the end of a shift and
removing all of the cash drawers, you
force would-be thieves to risk with-
drawing the cash while people are still
milling about. Similarly, you may want
to rethink how you do physical inven-
tory. Auditing a bar’s inventory is ex-
clusively a management function. A
sneak of a bartender can take advan-
tage of the opportunity by overstating
the amount of liquor on-hand, mask-
ing detection of product theft having
ever occurred.
Reassess Your Technology
Technology seems to change with the
season. The task of staying up to speed
with every new device or program is
daunting. Fortunately, however, much
tech advancement of late is often
smartphone-driven. By checking oc-
casionally with your bartending and
management colleagues, you may well
find that something you thought could
only be addressed with a whole
software system is now doable
with an app downloaded to your
mobile device.
Here’s to more profit and a
higher quality of life in 2013!
Robert Plotkin is a judge at the San Francisco
World Spirits Competition and author of 16
books on bartending and beverage manage-
ment including Secrets Revealed of America’s
Greatest Cocktails. He can be reached at www.
AmericanCocktails.com or by e-mail at robert@
barmedia.com.
VALUE FROM A GUEST’S PERSPECTIVE
MEANS SOMETHING IS WORTH THE
PRICE PAID. MARKETING IMPECCABLE
COCKTAILS AT REASONABLE PRICES
PROVIDES GUESTS AMPLE REASONS
TO RETURN ANOTHER NIGHT.
AT
THE
BAR
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