Top products from r/bartenders

We found 82 product mentions on r/bartenders. We ranked the 277 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top comments that mention products on r/bartenders:

u/ems88 · 3 pointsr/bartenders

Greetings from Santa Cruz!

I think I may be the perfect person to help you here. My bar staff is about the same size as yours, and I've been doing exactly this and lending out books from my personal collection each month.
Everyone else has had some great answers, so I'll try and bring something new to the table:

How's Your Drink? by Eric Felten is my favorite easy introduction to cocktail culture. It's written by the cocktail columnist from the Wall Street Journal and reads in a very conversational way. Can be finished in one sitting. Quick read that I recommend you have anyone new start with.

The Cocktail Chronicles by Paul Clarke is a relatively comprehensive overview of the current state of cocktails. It is based around recipes, but I wouldn't call it a recipe book as each recipe has a lot of commentary that goes into context and history.

Meehan's Bartender Manual by Jim Meehan just came out and is incredible. His previous book, The PDT Cocktail Book, is an invaluable resource for recipes, and the Bartenders Manual is a complete guide dealing with all aspects of the job.

Distillled by Joel Harrison & Neil Ridley is a good introduction to different spirits and goes chapter by chapter from vodka to whiskey with an overview of production processes and other factors that influence the flavor of the drink.

Straight Up or On the Rocks by William Grimes is a history of cocktails in the U.S. starting with the first use of the word and going through the early '90s. The author is a food writer for the NY Times and the book is very well researched.

The Joy of Mixology by Gary Regan does a good job of explaining how cocktails are related to each other by putting them into families. His taxonomy may be a little odd, and in and of itself is not the last word in cocktails, but it offers a good perspective.

The Bar Book by Jeffrey Morgenthaler addresses technique. It's an opinionated book but he's usually right. Lots of great information. If I were starting off as a bartender and could only read one book, this is the one that would probably best set me up for success.

Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails by Ted Haigh is based around historic recipes, but each of them has a lot of history incorporated and you also get a good introduction to some of the more obscure ingredients that have come back into fashion recently.

I've reached eight, so I'll stop there. If you would like additional recommendations in the future, please feel free to reach out. I've been collecting bar books for the last six years and have amassed a fair few and even read one or two.

You sound like you're in an enviable position. It's great to have support for making learning a big part of working with food/beverage. Pretty sure I've read a couple of your owner's books and have loved them and found them very useful. It seems like a really great company to work for, as well.

I'd also like to quickly mention Imbibe Magazine, which comes out every two months and is a great way to keep up with what's going on in the beverage world. I keep the most recent couple issues available for my staff to look through.

If there's anything else you'd like insight on related to bringing bar staff into the fold I'd be very happy to help.

u/lothlin · 5 pointsr/bartenders

Do yourself a favor and buy these books, they've got some very good basic stuff.

The Craft of the Cocktail - Dale Degroff

The Joy of Mixology - Gary Reagan

Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails - Ted Haigh

The Dale Degroff book isn't huge but it has some super solid information (and Degroff is just about the most down to earth but still crazy knowledgeable dudes that's around.)

The Gary Reagan book has a great section that breaks down a ton of different drinks by drink families and can really help you understand why things are constructed the way they are. IE - A sidecar and a margarita are both daisies, except a sidecar is cognac and lemon juice whereas a margarita uses tequila and lime. Or, basically how using the base of a spirit, a sweet, and a sour gives you a ton of different cocktails (Rum, lime, simple - Daiquiri. Whiskey, lemon, simple - whiskey sour. Gin, lime, simple - gimlet. Switch out the lime for lemon, put it in a tall glass and add soda water, and you get at tom collins. etc...) Basically its all super useful information and once you understand the whys and hows of construction it can allow you to either make shit on the fly, or more easily remember common proportions.

The Ted Haigh book is just kind of neat to have and has some weirder, not-so-standardized cocktails that some people may sometimes ask for. Think Singapore Sling, Blood and Sand, Vieux Carre, Fogcutter, French 75, etc. There's also a heap of neat old cocktails that NO ONE asks for anymore, and a couple of the recipes are out of date (The Aviation recipe is an old one, there was a period where creme de violette wasn't available and this book was published before it became available again BUT I DIGRESS that's more than you're probably looking for anyway.)

I could post some more if you really get down into nitty gritty neat stuff, but I'm a nerd for using historical knowledge to round out my skills, so I could actually go on for pages with recommendations.

Edit: All that said, if you just get one, get the Joy of Mixology. Its got a chart, it'll tell you what you need if anything weird comes up, but honestly, if its a pub you're probably not going to have that many issues.

u/motodoto · 1 pointr/bartenders

This is my preferred route.


cocktail kingdom shaken set

hiware barspoon

winco wooden muddler

A cutting board (I prefer black plastic ones, wood breaks apart and usually gets all bacterial, yech)

A cheap santoku knife

cocktail kingdom channel knife

There's the most important equipment that should last you awhile at home.

10 Bottles

  1. Vodka - Sobieski, Tito's, Ketel One, meh they are all almost the same for these cheap cocktail vodkas for the most part. The key is you want an 80 proof grain vodka (not potato) for cocktails since most recipes are based around that.

  2. Gin - Hendricks Gin is kind of expensive but worth it, I also advise Aviation gin if you can find it. Two different styles, but Aviation was very neutral and easy going in all the cocktails I made with it (except for classic gin Martinis, you want something like Hendricks for that).

  3. Silver Rum - I always advise Flor De Cana 4 year Extra Dry if you can find it. Bacardi is okay, but it's only stocked in a bunch of bars because it's sponsoring everyone and giving them discounts. Silver Rum should be cheap and smooth in my book, I've never understood the appeal of the expensive silver rums in cocktails.

  4. Bourbon - Old Granddad bonded OR four roses small batch if you want to spend a little more on quality. Don't listen to the hype. In cocktails you rarely can taste the difference between a 40 dollar bottle and a 20 dollar bottle. Maker's mark is overrated as fuck, and it's in a bunch of bars because it sponsors everyone and gives them a discount. In the price range of Maker's Mark you'd be better off getting Four Roses Single Barrel or spending a little more for Blanton's (both of which should only be used in classic old fashioned's or drank neat, since it would be a waste otherwise).

  5. Reposado Tequila - I prefer the one that is most commonly associated with excellent margaritas. Jose Cuervo Tradicional Reposado. Not Jose Cuervo Especial Gold (that shit is garbage), talking about Tradicional Reposado. It's neutral and goes in almost every tequila cocktail that calls for reposado. Reposado is the best way to make margaritas for sure. You can do it with silver/blanco but it lacks character when you do. The best margarita's in Colorado and anywhere I've been use Jose Cuervo Tradicional Reposado for their Margarita's and it's part of why they are so good.

  6. Orange Liqueur - If you can find it, get Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao. If not, get Cointreau. Don't skimp on orange liqueur, it's very important. Shitty triple sec will ruin a drink, and only people who have no taste think that Hiram Walker is acceptable in a drink.

  7. Sweet Vermouth - Carpano Antica if you can find it. Dolin Rouge Vermouth if you cannot (much cheaper but still acceptable). Buy small bottles for a home bar and refrigerate it after opening because it will start to lose it's character after a few weeks.

  8. Dark Rum - Gosling's Black Seal if you can find it, if not get Myer's. Basically when some recipes call for dark or black rum, this is usually the flavor profile they are referring to.

  9. Silver Tequila - Honestly, some cocktails just don't work with reposado's character so you need silver/blanco tequila. Pick up Espolon's Blanco tequila. It's cheap, smooth, and has a pretty strong agave note which is nice. Very good cocktail mixing tequila.

  10. Bitters - Combining all the bitters you'll want in one category. Buy them, they will last you for years in a home bartender situation. Angostura bitters, Regan's Orange Bitters, Peychaud's Bitters, Fee Brothers Celery Bitters, and (my personal favorite) Bar Keep's Apple Bitters. These will set you back at first (costing 10-20 bucks a bottle), but they will last you a long time. Pick them up overtime.

    A lot of the brand suggestions in here are surprising, the other comments are suggesting typical sponsor brands a lot. I would steer clear of brands you are used to seeing at dive bars.
u/trbonigro · 1 pointr/bartenders

They teach you the "easy way", and by easy way I mean using sour mix and taking shortcuts like that. There are plenty of good resources online and amazing cocktail books you can buy that have the original recipes for classic cocktails, as well as the proper way to do things behind the bar.

Learn from reputable sources and from good bartenders. If you're interested here's a couple good reads:

u/Anamanaguchii · 3 pointsr/bartenders

I am 100% all for the pursuit of knowledge behind the bar. I believe it's a great way to show initiative to get behind a craft bar, elevate your cocktail game, and just to learn something cool. Feel free to message me if you have questions on where to get started, what to do after you've read some of these books, what to expect when you're working your way up, etc. I'd be more than happy to lend some helpful advice!

Here are some of the books I'd recommend:

"The Bar Book" by Jeffrey Morgenthaler

I'd start here if you're interested in and are brand new to craft cocktails. Morgenthaler's Bar Book is threaded with great insight on what and why certain techniques are used behind the bar and is riddled with beautiful photography.

"Imbibe!" by Dave Wondrich

Hands down, the first book you should read if you want to get into the lore behind craft drinks. It opens up with the story of our great forefather, Jeffrey Thomas, and then continues to discuss the various eras of bartending and what they represent, as well as the drinks within those eras.

"Craft Cocktails at Home" by Kevin Liu
If Bar Book is your high school Geometry, Liu's, "Craftcocktails at Home" is your college Linear Algebra class. Provides you with hard science on what exactly going on in the glass if we shake VS stir or the happenings in an egg-based drink. Awesome read.

"How's Your Drink" by Eric Felten

Felten runs through history and entertains with stories behind some of the biggest drinks in cocktails. Did you know the Vesper (a vodka/gin Martini hybrid of sorts) was created in a Jame's Bond book and was named after the sultry villain? That President Theodore Roosevelt loved himself a good mint julep and even had his own mint bed to supply himself plenty when he wanted one? Fun read.

"Drunken Botanist" by Amy Stewart

Alcohol is derived from things. This is the best book that talks about those things. Agave, Juniper, Barley, Cinchona Bark. Understand the drink from a Botanist's point of view.

"Bitters" by Brad Thomas Parsons

Bitters are an incredible way to add both aromatics and flavor into a cocktail. This book will help you not only understand what they are and what they do, but will kickstart your own bitter brewing process if desired. Homemade Orange Bitters kick ass.


Last but not least, Barsmarts is a great online tool to help rundown the basis of what we with cocktails. It goes through the various spirits, a brief look at cocktail history, and even has a "drink builder". Definitely worth the $30.

u/lostarchitect · 2 pointsr/bartenders

Here's what I'd buy if getting a home bar set up quickly with good stuff but not spending a ton.

Beefeater gin, Tito's vodka, Angostura 7yr rum or Barbancourt 8yr, (I don't know tequila, sorry), (don't get TN whiskey) Old Grand Dad Bourbon (get the 100 proof if possible), Rittenhouse Rye, Johnny Walker black scotch (JW black is very middle of the road, but I'm assuming you are not an accomplished scotch drinker), (I wouldn't bother with Irish Whiskey unless you particularly like it, and definitely don't bother with Canadian).

You should also get: Angostura bitters, Orange bitters, sweet & dry vermouths (Nolly Prat is fine). You may want to consider some liqueurs that are common in cocktails, such as Contreau (needed for Margaritas), Campari (Negronis), Absinthe (Sazeracs), etc. I always have a bottle of green Chartreuse, but it's not cheap. You will also want limes, lemons and oranges for garnishes and juice. You will need sugar, you can usually use cubes or you can make a simple syrup. Keep the syrup and the vermouths in the fridge. If you don't have one, you may want a basic bar tools set.

I would recommend getting The Bar Book to learn techniques and some good recipies as well. Start with classic cocktails, learn them well, and go on from there: the Old Fashioned, the Manhattan, the Martini, the Daiquiri, etc.

Good luck!

u/mleonard31 · 2 pointsr/bartenders

Vodka: Svedka 14 dollars or Reyka 20 dollars

Gin: New Amsterdam 12-15 dollars

Rum: Don Q 13 dollars

Tequila: Piedra Azul is super cheap (15 dollars) 100% blue agave choice of blanco or reposado for the same price. Esplon is really good too and only 6 more dollars

Bourbon: Buffalo Trace or Jim Beam are both solid choices around 20 dollars

Rye: Old Overholt 20 dollars

Vermouth: Martini makes solid super cheap affordable for both sweet and dry together your looking at maybe 15 dollars

Triple sec is key eventually you'll want a better orange liqueur.

Peach Schnapps is another staple

get yourself some bitters, angostura, orange, and peychauds first then get the more obscure stuff later

get a couple juices: cran, orange, pine
get a few sodas: coke, sprite, tonic, soda

Keep adding stuff here and there. Eventually, you'll have a solid collection... Unless you drink your product faster than you add product.

Also highly recommend getting yourself some books.
The Joy of Mixology by Gary Regan has some solid advice for getting started as a professional bartender and is full of recipes.

Good luck my friend!

u/PuckDaFackers · 7 pointsr/bartenders

Are you just bartending casually at home or are you looking to do it as a job in the future?

Jefferey Morgenthaler's book is great:

You'll want to get a jigger, I recommend oxo's graduated jigger, a barspoon, a mixing glass, a strainer, a set of shaker tins (get a small and a large, and seriously splurge for koriko not the other bullshit)

Those are all of the essentials, beyond that everything is fairly unnecessary but there are tons of other things you can buy. I guess a vegetable peeler could be handy for peels but you can just use a sharp paring knife for zest garnishes.

For glassware you can spend as much or as little as you want, depending on how much you care about appearance. When I first starting making drinks at home I had glasses for every variety of drink. I still have those glasses, but basically use these for everything, regardless if it's shaken stirred or whatever. Gimlets taste delicious out of them, manhattans taste delicious out of them.

One little handy thing I've found is these seagram's bottles. Buy a 6 pk of the little glass club soda bottles. Once you use the soda, rinse them out and they're perfect for storing syrups, juices, etc. Plastic caps won't deteriorate like metal will in other styles of bottlees. They're short so they fit in weird parts of your fridge, hold enough syrup for plenty of drinks, etc etc.

u/The_Basik_Ducky · 1 pointr/bartenders

that book while amazing and is really cool to have on hand, won't help you with what alot of people are making and drinking today.

I agree with kimuran here. its probably best to get a new book the [PDT Cocktail book] ( is a really good book for you to get to know what the current cocktail "style" is like.

u/CityBarman · 3 pointsr/bartenders

Your first read should be Imbibe! by David Wondrich. This will set you up perfectly for everything else you read.

Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails by Ted Haigh is worth the read.

All the classic cocktail books, from 1862 - 1940s are definitely worth the reads for glimpses into the cultures when they were written. If you have a tablet, two sites offer practically every cocktail/bar book every written, now in public domain, for free, in digital formats. and

~Have fun!

u/MaybeMaybeNotMike · 1 pointr/bartenders

Yeah dude, I totally get it - this shit adds up. The Hawthorne is part of the kit already and you don’t really need the muddler unless you wanna make certain very specific drinks. If you do decide to get one, though, just get one that doesn’t have teeth on it. Look for a flat muddling surface. This is the other type of strainer you want, and you definitely want both kinds because they’re often used together.

I haven’t used this one myself so I don’t have personal experience but I’ve heard good things. Barfly’s kit doesn’t include a mixing glass but mixing glasses aren’t truly necessary. We use them sometimes at work because they look nice, but Dave Arnold (if you’re not familiar with him - he’s a very well respected bartender/writer) says he prefers just stirring in a tin anyway and that’s what I do at home. Plus with the Barfly kit you don’t have have CK’s crazy shipping fee. They carry great products so I usually just suck it up, but fuck that $10 shipping.

If you’re gonna have a little room left in the budget with the Barfly kit, and if (I think you said) she’s brand new to the game, it may not hurt to grab a book too for a little guidance. This one is excellent for starters.

u/nosniboD · 4 pointsr/bartenders

A Bar Above is pretty good, their podcast is good as well.
Morgenthaler's Blog, his Playboy stuff and his Food Republic stuff is worth checking out (as is his book. Go buy his book.)
Weirdly for some but Jamie Oliver's Drinks Tube can be a good resource, better than almost all drinks videos out there and a decent range of stuff. It's meant for the 'home bartender' but there's plenty there to learn, once you sift through the Bacardi product placement.

u/AirAssault310 · 5 pointsr/bartenders

When I was learning (in a similar environment that OP described), I had a mentor teach me. I believe that is by far the best way to learn in any industry whether it be in the kitchen, behind the bar, on a construction site, etc.

In lieu of a mentor, there are several books worth picking up to bring up your knowledge, with the combination of internet research:

-Craft of the Cocktail

-Death & Co.

-Vintage Spirits and Forgotten Cocktails

-Bar Book: Elements of Cocktail Technique


-The Drunken Botanist

-The Curious Bartender

-The Joy of Mixology

Some helpful links:

-Kindred Cocktails

-The Spirits Business

-Good Spirit News

-Jeffrey Morgenthaler's Blog

-Jamie Boudreau's Blog: not updated but still has good info.

u/sapereaud33 · 3 pointsr/bartenders

Congrats! I'm guessing since the restaurant is "fine dinning" your going to be doing a lot of cocktails. You should read a good book that covers technique as well as recipes more in depth than a basic recipe site. I'll recommend "The Craft of the Cocktail" by Dale DeGroff, unless someone here has a recommendation that they think is more practical since cocktails are only a hobby for me, work is all wine.

u/tunes1986 · 1 pointr/bartenders

What's the rush? Do you have a job lined up already? You could memorize a bunch of recipes but every bar has a recipe book and existing bartenders to teach drinks (unless you're looking to open a place). Additionally, different countries/regions have different names or variations of drinks.
What you'll lack in knowledge about beer, wine, terms and techniques, liquor compatibility and food pairing as well as working restaurant knowledge will make you a poor bartender.

If you're actually interested in tending, follow u/belowthisisalie's advice about skipping the recipes and just get to know your target bar's menu and how it the bar functions. Pick up a few books on cocktails (Dale DeGroff would be a good start) as you progress so you can start branching out and getting creative.

u/DreadPirateCristo · 12 pointsr/bartenders

It totally depends on the type of bartending you’re trying to get into, but for my personal tastes. there’s a book I like called Cocktail Codex which breaks it down to assert that there are six basic templates and that everything else (within the classic cocktail spectrum) is essentially some variation on one of those six models.

Those six are:

Old Fashioned




Whiskey Highball


If you can get down the templates for those, you’ll have a pretty solid foundation for a ton of cocktails.

u/GodofredoSinicoCaspa · 2 pointsr/bartenders

If is just a hobby, get a recipe book like the PDT or The Craft of the Cocktail. They are both pretty easy to read.

Also chech out /r/cocktails. They are a bit tough with the newbies but be patient, if you ask politely they (we) will help you.

u/[deleted] · 5 pointsr/bartenders

The Bar Book - Jeffrey Morgenthaler teaches no bullshit techniques, recipes, and the reasons behind those techniques and recipes.

Liquid Intelligence - Dave Arnold goes full on science nerd on the art of making perfect cocktails.

Death and Co. - Excellent modern classic recipes.

Smuggler's Cover - Pretty much the only Tiki book you'll need nowadays.

Meehan's Bartender Manual - I just bought this as a present for someone, been flipping through it, really nice new book from Jim Meehan.

u/bluealbum · 3 pointsr/bartenders

Meehan's Bartender Manual

if possible check out this book, it has great info about different bar layouts and designs. it lays out everything you’ll need to open. as for drinks it will depend on the community sounding your location.

u/dfmz · 1 pointr/bartenders

These are very popular here in France and you can find them at the entrance of pretty much every supermarket sitting next to empty bottles and a pile or oranges so people can make their own juice.

Imho, it doesn't make great juice imho.

OP, if you want a serious bar-grade juicer, get a Sunkist J-1. This sucker here. This devices has a half-horsepower motor and will suck dry any citrus (lime, lemon, orange, grapefruit) you throw at it, and in mere minutes.

I own one of these (we like fresh juice at home and we have a home bar) and it's badass. You can also get it directly from Sunkist.

u/jaswg · 1 pointr/bartenders

I think David Wondrich has done more research than anyone on cocktails. Check out this book for some good information.

u/RustyPipes · 2 pointsr/bartenders

This in my opinion, this is the book to get. It's an easy read, nerdy, but not too hard to grasp.

Edited some words.

u/dazhealy · 1 pointr/bartenders

It's called Bar Rot generally as far as I know. Or paronychia. I can't say I've ever suffered from it but from reading this sub I think this stuff is usually recommended.

u/jumpstarter · 1 pointr/bartenders

Working hands. I live/work in Michigan, have dry skin, and hate the way lotion feels on my skin. I close my bar 5 nights a week and run the well during dinner service. My first winter there my hands dried and cracked to the point where touching something the wrong way would send electric jolts of pain up my arms.
Co-worker introduced me to Working hands. I apply it after showering and when I get home from work. It's not slimy, It makes your hands tacky for a few minutes after you rub it in, and then you're fine. You don't have to do any weird shit like sleep with lotion filled gloves or spend time thinking about your hands.
It's cheap, it doesn't smell, it doesn't feel weird, and it works and you should just get it. It's great, I promise.