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You're 86

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An interview show about how bartenders handle problems


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An interview show about how bartenders handle problems






Tips for COVID-era hospitality – Ep38.5

Hello again! I wanted to do another short recap with some tips for COVID-era hospitality. I hope you are all faring well through these challenging and weird times. It has been around three months since this all started to directly affect our industry, and things just keep getting weirder. Extended quarantine orders, protests and violence, murder hornets—It's all just a lot to deal with right now and I don't think anyone is really thriving. That's ok though, just remember to take a few moments to pause and breath, and check in with yourself about what you need. It's also ok to ask for help sometimes, we can't do this alone. Fortunately we have an amazing community of helpful people in the hospitality industry. We are realizing new challenges and problems resulting from this world crisis day by day, and we are also coming up with new and creative solutions. Some of the biggest challenges are related to uncertainty of the situation, constant change, struggles with motivation and not knowing what to do next. If you haven't checked out the most recent episodes, they deal with those very topics, so definitely go back and listen if you have a chance. In the meantime, you can check out this recap of the main points in the player or wherever you get your podcasts. If you can, please consider supporting the show on Patreon or picking up some cool merch from the shop . You're 86 is made possible by the support of listeners like you. Be sure to also check out our homepage for much, much more, and stay tuned for next time. Cheers!


Using our bartender skills online – Ep38 With Shana Race

(Post contains affiliate links) Hello again! The COVID-19 crisis has shown us how fragile and unsustainable our career and industry can be, and has many of us questioning what to do next. Let’s face it, things are not going to go back to the way they were. We've learned how easy it can be for our source of income to evaporate over night. Unlike people who work in offices, we can't work from home, but perhaps using our bartender skills online can open up new opportunities and sources of income for us. But where do we begin? My guest today is Shana Race, she’s been in the industry for more than 15 years, and she’s the host and creator of the Talk Tales podcast, online cocktail classes and more. She had a lot to say about her journey from behind the bar to new directions online. Since I know you like bartender podcasts, be sure to check out Talk Tales in your favorite podcast player or on their homepage. You can support their show through their Patreon page or by leaving them a tip with Venmo (@talktales_podcast). Be sure to visit our homepage as well, and if you'd like to help support You're 86 you can leave us a tip or pick up some You're 86 merch in the shop. Also, if you are interested in podcasting, you're going to need a media host. You're 86 is hosted on Blubrry and I've been very happy with the service. If you sign up for hosting on Blubrry through my link, you'll get your first month free and help support this show. Thank you so much for your support, I'll see you next time!


Staying positive and creative in quarantine – Ep37 With Phillip Kim

Hello again! Are you going stir crazy yet? With shelter in place orders being extended across the country and around the world, it’s hard to say when we’ll be out of this. The uncertainty of this crisis is what makes it so difficult to deal with. If we knew the end date, it would be much easier to plan for. Staying positive and creative in quarantine in whatever way works best for you is very important. With so many of us out of work and stuck at home, I wanted to chat with another bartender and hear about there experience. Even though many of us are physically alone, we are all in this together. My guest today is Phillip Kim. He is a bartender here in San Francisco at 15 Romolo, and he's also worked for The Keystone. Phillip has always been one of the most positive people I’ve known in the industry. It's always lovely to go visit him when he's behind the bar and see the creative projects he's getting into at work, so it was no surprise to hear that he is staying positive and creative at home too. He is also spending some time thinking ahead about what the industry will be like when our bars reopen. If you would like to help Phillip and his colleagues at 15 Romolo, you can donate to their Go Fund Me campaign. You can also get 15 Romolo cocktails to go right now if you are in the Bay Area. Every little bit helps. Listen to our conversation in the player or wherever you get your podcasts, and be sure to visit our homepage for much, much more. You can also follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Stay tuned for next week, we have more exciting stuff coming your way. Thanks so much for tuning in and I'll see you next time


Quarantine health and wellness for bartenders – Ep36 With Amie Ward

There’s a pretty good chance you’re also stuck in your house and not working behind the bar right now. Without our normal structure, it’s easy to fall into unhealthy habits, but it’s also an opportunity to form new ones. It's easy to start small and practice new health and wellness habits during quarantine. Preparing one healthy snack a day or doing five minutes of breathing exercise when you wake up can vastly improve your wellbeing, especially during this challenging time. These are things you can carry forward into your daily routine when we are allowed to go back to work again. My guest today is Amie Ward, aka The Healthtender. She’s a Chicago based industry veteran and an ACE certified health coach. When not behind the bar at Neon Wilderness, Amie travels the country to help educate bartenders on how to care for themselves physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and spiritually. She had a ton of advice about simple things you can do to stay healthy and form good habits during this crisis. From preparing healthy snacks and short exercise routines to keeping a food journal, it's easy to start forming new healthy habits. Listen to our conversation in the player or wherever you get your podcasts to find out more about quarantine health and wellness for bartenders. Don't forget to check out our homepage for much, much more, and stay tuned for more great conversations during this challenging time. Thanks so much for tuning in! I'll see you next time.


Running a bar in a pandemic – Ep35 With Mary Palac

We are living in uncertain times. Running a bar in a pandemic is one of the biggest challenges we've ever faced as an industry. As restaurants and bars across the world are being forced to close or pivot to pickup and delivery sales only, many are struggling to survive. One of those bars is Paper Plane in San Jose, Calif. in a county that has seen both the earliest and highest numbers of COVID-19 cases in the state. My guest today is Mary Palac, bartender at paper plane. She’s been in the industry since she was 15 and holds such accolades as Season 7 Ms. Speed rack California, two time Bar Mania champion, president and founding member of USBG Silicon Valley, and much more. She’s been a huge inspiration to me, and she had a lot to share about how she and Paper Plane are handling this crisis. One of the things that impressed me the most about Paper Plane was how they didn’t react immediately and they instead took the time to do things right, and that’s really paid off for them. With circumstances changing daily, it’s really important to slow down a little bit and do things safely and correctly. If you'd like to help Mary and her colleagues at Paper Plane, you can donate to their employee relief fund, or order food and cocktails to go from their Tri Force menu. Check out our conversation in the player or wherever you get your podcasts, and be sure to visit our homepage for much, much more. Thanks so much for listening, stay safe out there and I'll see you next time.


Some internal work we can all do – Ep34

So this is a pretty weird time to be a human in society. I’ve been struggling with it, as I’m sure you are as well. First of all, apologies for the radio silence. It’s been a bit of an adjustment for me too. I typically do in person interviews, but as you can imagine, that’s not possible right now, not to mention everyone in our industry is a little preoccupied. I'm working on a system for remote interviews, and hopefully we’ll have some conversations in the coming weeks about how people are handling this crisis. In the meantime I wanted to just share some of my thoughts about what's going on, how it relates to our industry and some internal work we can all do. As you might expect, both of the bars I work for are closed, which is a bit of a reality check. I usually feel like, “Well, if things go sideways I can always pick up shifts." And now here we are. I know this is a scary time, and one of the scariest things is the uncertainty of it all. It’s such a bad feeling to be powerless and have no control over the situation. Will we have to shelter even longer? Will we have a job to go back to if and when this ends, will we get sick? Will someone we’re close to get sick? What is the world going to be like on the other side of this? It’s scary to think about and we want to do something about it, but there really isn’t anything we can do, on the outside anyway. Hoarding toilet paper and pasta isn’t going to change anything, except maybe the amount of available space in our closets. What we can do is work on what’s going on inside of us. I’ve done a few episodes about different mental tools that help us get through our shift behind the bar, and those are absolutely applicable to our current situation, even though we are not at work. Listen to this episode in the player below and Episode 31, Episode 24, Episode 22 and Episode 19. One thing that has really been helping me is focusing on all of the positive things I see, and you aren’t going to see those things in the news. That’s just not what the news reports. So if you must read the news, it’s important to keep in mind that all of the news is going to be bad. It doesn’t mean that everything happening in the world is bad though. In fact, I believe there is a lot more good happening that we think. I’ve seen a lot of positive things and I’m kind of excited for the potential for positive change because of this. I mean, there’s nothing like a common enemy to bring us all together. I've seen so much generosity, humor and creativity especially. I’ve seen things like Dani and Jackie’s virtual happy hour, where bartenders are showing folks at home how to make cocktails, and the bartenders can get tipped out for it. Maybe you want to try something like that for regulars at your bar? I’m really grateful for those things, and that’s another thing I’ve been doing too, focusing on what I’m grateful for. I mean, I have a home that I really love to shelter in. Some of us aren’t so lucky. Another thing we’re going to have to do right now is to practice patience. We’re all concerned about money. I mean it’s really scary to suddenly lose our jobs or worry about losing our businesses. It’s just adding to the uncertainty. But we have to try to be patient, compartmentalize our emotions and worries. Our unemployment checks are going to come when they come and there’s nothing that we can do about it. In California alone, the Employment Development Department has received more than one million unemployment claims in the past two weeks. It’s like those times at the bar where a bus load of 40 people all walk in at the same time and then the dishwasher breaks. There’s only so much they can do. A lot of our guests on the show have mentioned meditation practice as something that helps them, and myself as well. Just 5-10 minutes a day can make a world of difference. Here is a quick TEDx talk with a simple guided breathing meditation.


Cultural consideration in bar programs – Ep33 With Samuel Jimenez

Things can get dicey when we borrow elements from other cultures for our bar programs. Is it ok to use ceremonial fabric as a tablecloth or put tropical drinks in cups shaped like religious icons? Cultural consideration in bar programs is very important, but it is challenging when we don't have an understanding or even exposure to those cultures. It's easy to misrepresent someone else's culture when you don't have any knowledge about it, even if you are well intentioned. My guest today is Samuel Jimenez. He has been in the industry in the Bay Area for many, many years. He is currently the bar manager at Novela in San Francisco, and he was recently chosen as one of Imbibe Magazine’s 75 People, Places and Things that will shape the way you drink in 2020, after spending 2019 educating the beverage world about Polynesian culture and history and how it relates to tiki. Samuel believes that the key to running more thoughtful bar programs is having a better understanding of the cultures you're representing. As a fist generation Samoan American, Samuel has a deeply rooted connection to Samoan culture, which many Americans have little understanding or exposure to. Samuel had so much to say about cultural consideration in bar programs and the importance of knowledge and cultural exchange. Listen to the episode in the player or wherever you get your podcasts, and don’t forget to subscribe and stay tuned for more. Also be sure to check out our homepage for more great advice on some of the biggest challenges in our industry. Cheers!


Becoming a wine importer – Ep 32 With Ian Adams

Many of us, myself especially, wonder where to go next with our careers. One exciting option is to start an import business. It seems like an exciting career of traveling to far away places and shaking hands with bearded men in exotic marketplaces. While there is some measure of that, becoming a wine importer is not without its challenges, particularly when international trade disputes happen. My guest today is Ian Adams, Director of Spirits and Fortified Wines at Merchants of Thirst, an importer of wines and spirits from Europe. Ian has been in the hospitality industry for more than 15 years managing bars and restaurants, including 15 Romolo. A couple of years ago he and some colleagues started Merchants of Thirst, and he had a lot to say about what he’s learned along the way and how he’s facing obstacles like the tariffs that were imposed in October on goods from the EU. Check out our conversation in the player or wherever podcasts are found to hear what Ian learned about becoming a wine importer. Be sure to also check out our homepage for much, much more, and don’t forget to hit subscribe and stay tuned. I’ll see you next time!


Useful tips for bartenders – Episode 31.5

Light Spanish wines are perfect for recording recap episodes Welcome back! Thanks so much tuning in to another recap of what we've learned in the past few episodes. We had four amazing guests this month who shared many useful tips for bartenders and industry professionals. Listen to the episode in the player or wherever you get your podcasts for some of the most important things we learned. In Episode 28, we learned all about how competitive bartending can make you a better bartender, with recent Speed Rack winner Jessi Lorraine. In Episode 29, we heard from Absinthia Vermut about starting a craft spirits company and the value of writing a business plan. In Episode 30, we heard from Mike Miranti about the challenges of high end restaurants. Finally, in Episode 31, we got to sit down with Hubert Tang and hear how he stays positive on the floor. That’s all for this week, but be Sure to also visit our homepage for much, much more. Be sure to sign up for our mailing list while you're there. It’s another way to stay up to date with all of this great information. I'm sending out the next newsletter soon, so don't miss it! I’ll see you next time!


Staying positive during service – Ep31 With Hubert Tang

Hospitality is our number one job. It is literally the name of our industry, but it’s often hard to be hospitable when you have other challenges going on in your life. Difficult customers, trouble with family or partners or simply being exhausted from work all make staying positive during service a big challenge. With a few good mental tools, however, we can learn to stay positive with our customers no matter what is going on in our lives. My guest today is Hubert Tang. He has been in the industry his entire life, as his parents worked and owned restaurants, so he really understands the industry. Him and I currently work together at High Treason where we recorded this interview, and he is exceptionally good at staying positive and hospitable to customers no matter what’s going on. Check out my interview with Hubert in the player or wherever podcasts are found, and hear what he had to say about staying positive during service. Visit our homepage for more and be sure to hit subscribe in your favorite podcast player, we have new conversations every week. And please share us with your friends and colleagues in the industry. This is such great information for everyone. I'll see you next time.


The challenges of high-end restaurants – Ep 30 With Mike Miranti

Fine dining and high-end casual restaurants can be very exciting and lucrative places to work. You get the chance to work with well respected chefs and staff, the pay is usually higher and the media attention is exciting too. But the unique challenges of high-end restaurants can make working in that environment exhausting if you're not prepared for it. High-end restaurants are often more complicated and more stressful. Solid teamwork is a must in that kind of environment. If the operation isn't firing on all cylinders, things can fall apart quickly. My guest today is Mike Miranti, he’s worked and managed several high-end restaurants in New York, including Becco and Sen Sakana. He’s currently head server at Feroce in Manhattan and he is also a co-host of the Not a Foodie Podcast. Mike shared a lot of great advice about the challenges of high-end restaurants, including a time when the sewer overflowed into their bathroom. Be sure to check out our conversation in the player or wherever you get your podcasts, and don't forget to hit subscribe. We have new conversations every week about some of the biggest challenges in the industry. Be sure to visit our homepage, and if you haven't already, sign up for our mailing list. It's a great way to catch up on anything you missed. Thanks so much for listening! I'll see you next time


Starting a craft spirits company – Ep29 With Absinthia Vermut

Have you ever thought about starting a craft spirits company? Many of us working behind the bar wonder where our careers will lead us next. Although I do believe one can have a long career in service, many people just don't want to. Starting your own spirits brand is an alluring career move, especially since we're so familiar with the market and the products that are available. Many bartenders have started brands or consulted with producers to create products that work better in cocktails or to bring back products that were unavailable. Absinthe, for example, didn't start to become widely available in the US until after the laws were amended in 2007. At the time, domestic production was almost non existent. Starting your own company and creating a new product can be an extremely rewarding career, but it also comes with a lot of hard work and challenges to overcome. My guest today is Absinthia Vermut, founder of Absinthia's Bottled Spirits. Absinthia fell in love with the category in the late Nineties and began bootlegging absinthe at home. In 2013 she founded her company and began working towards bringing her organic absinthe brand, which is absolutely delicious and I'm not just saying that because she sponsored this episode, to market. Absinthia had a lot to share about the challenges she faced starting her company, everything from legal nightmares getting the label approved with the TTB to marketing a still widely misunderstood product category. Check out our conversation about starting a craft spirits company in the player or wherever you get your podcasts. Also be sure to visit our homepage and check out Absinthia's website to learn more about her story. She's also started a new podcast about absinthe, so be sure to subscribe to that as well. Thanks so much for listening, I'll see you next time!


All about competitive bartending – Ep 28 with Jessi Lorraine

Welcome back! I Hope 2020 is treating you well so far. Have you ever thought about competitive bartending? It can be an amazing way to learn new skills and move forward in your career, but it’s not without its challenges, everything from balancing training time with your daily schedule to finding support for your cause, and some you may not even expect. Competitive bartending is definitely one of the more exciting directions you can go in this industry. My guest today is Jessi Lorraine. She has been in the industry for more than seven years at bars like Absinthe and Bon Voyage, and she’s the winner of the most recent Speed Rack competition in California. Speed Rack is an intense, all-female, high-speed bartending competition which has raised more than one million dollars to date for breast cancer research. Jessi has competed in other competitions as well, such as Bacardi Legacy, and she also manages Elda, where we recorded this interview. Jessi had a ton of amazing insights about competitive bartending and some excellent advice for anyone interested in getting into competitions. Listen to the episode in the player or wherever you get your podcasts, and don't forget to subscribe and stay tuned for more. Also be sure to check out our homepage for more great advice on some of the biggest challenges in our industry


2019 Top 10 tips for bartenders – Episode 27

Wow! it's been a long and crazy year. So much has happened here at You're 86, and here we are almost into the 20s again! Fortunately we don't have prohibition this time around. We've covered a lot on the show this year and I wanted to give you my 2019 top 10 tips for bartenders. These are my favorite bits of knowledge from all of the interviews this past year. They are things that have definitely helped me, and I hope they help you too. Listen to the episode in the player or wherever podcasts are found. Be sure to share with your friends in the industry too. Read on after the break for the list of my top 10 tips for bartenders. 2019 top 10 tips for bartenders 1 - From Episode 0: One of the easiest ways to spot a counterfeit bill is by looking for the vertical security thread. All US currency notes of denominations of $5 or higher, printed after the early 90s will have this thread. You'll spot it easily when you hold the bill up to light. I recommend using the light of your POS screen to discreetly check out the bill. 2 - From Episode 2: Nurse Andrew Campbell advised, when you cut yourself, rinse the cut with water and apply pressure with clean gauze. If necessary, wash the area around the cut with soap and water. Putting soap, rubbing alcohol or anything else in the cut itself can actually cause more damage. 3 - From Episode 4: Beverage Director Andrew Meltzer recommended, when you have to cut someone off, plan ahead, be clear and offer alternatives. Use it as an opportunity to provide further hospitality. 4 - From Episode 5: Founder of Jigger and Dash Tanya Clark suggested finding the type of exercise that is right for you and that you're excited about. If you don't like running, no one is making you go running. There's something out there for you. 5 - From Episode 10: Beverage Director Enoch Tonatiuh recommended taking a vacation after opening a new bar. As soon as the dust settles and your operation starts to get into a groove, take a few days off for yourself. Opening a new bar is both exhilarating and incredibly stressful. 6 - From Episode 12: Mark Goodwin of The Pin Project had so much to say about our relationship with alcohol as bartenders. One of his recommendations for those times when you're offered a shot but don't want to take one is to take a shot of grapefruit juice instead. Not only will the sugar in the juice help appease the part of your brain that wants alcohol, you’ll still be taking part in the ritual of taking a shot with friends. 7 - From Episode 17: Hannah Chamberlain of Spirited LA stressed the importance of greeting every guest that walks in. Prepare a greeting that works for you and your bar and use it every time anyone walks in. 8 - From Episode 18: Joanna Lioce, long-time bartender at Vesuvio Cafe, has had to kick out a lot of drunken guests in her tenure there. She recommends not making it personal and not taking it personally when you have to eject a misbehaving patron. 9 - From Episode 21: Saving money can be difficult when you work in the industry, but personal finance expert Sarah Brady says the easiest way to save money is to make the process automatic. With your bank, set up an automatic transfer of part of your paycheck to a savings account every month. Choose whatever amount works for you. 10 - From Episodes 23 and 26: Both Keli Rivers and Rebecca Hopkins recommended the best way to not get to drunk at industry events is to not finish your drink. Take a sip and then casually leave it somewhere. There you have it, my 2019 top 10 tips for bartenders. Thanks so much for listening and stay tuned for more great advice in 2020! Be sure to visit our home page for all of our previous episodes and much more. New episodes every week, so don’t forget to hit subscribe. Happy holidays and happy new year! I’ll see you next time.


Surviving holiday stress – Ep 26: With Rebecca Hopkins

This is probably the craziest time of year for all sides of our industry, and surviving that holiday stress isn't easy. Our jobs are extra busy with company buyouts, we have to manage expectations of family and friends, we have holiday parties to host and attend, and that's on top of all the usual end of year stress. Despite all of the bright and cheerful decorations, this can be an incredibly dark and hopeless time of year. My guest today is Rebecca Hopkins. She's been in the wine industry for more than 25 years, she's currently Vice President of Communications and Partner at Folio Fine Wine Partners based in Napa, CA. In 2018, Rebecca founded and launched A Balanced Glass, which is a wonderful website providing education and resources on health and wellbeing for our industry. She recently published a couple of pieces about surviving holiday stress, and she had a lot of advice to share. Listen to our conversation in the player or wherever podcasts are found,. Please share this with your friends and colleagues in the industry too. This is advice that can benefit everyone and it's really important to support each other during this crazy time. Be sure to also check out our homepage for much, much more. And don’t forget to hit subscribe and stay tuned for more. I’ll see you next time!


Handling drunken holiday crowds – Episode 25: With Eddie Chann

Handling drunken holiday crowds is a challenging inevitability in our industry. Days like St. Patricks Day, Cinco de Mayo and New Year's Eve can bring massive crowds of imbibers to your bar. Often, these are groups of people who have already been drinking elsewhere, and it can be hard to tell how much they've had already. This can be a dangerous challenge when you are extra busy with the high volume of customers and your awareness is lower. So how do we survive these crazy drinking holidays? My guest today is barman Eddie Chann. He has worked in the hospitality industry for more than eight years in the San Francisco Bay Area. Eddie is no stranger to big crowds of drunken revelers. In addition to all of the usual holidays, one of Eddie's former bars, Blind Tiger in Oakland, Calif., was a popular bar crawl destination during the monthly First Friday event. Eddie shared some great advice about how good communication, careful observation of your coworker's movements, practiced efficiency and how simply slowing down a little bit when something bad happens can help you get through even the toughest and craziest crowds. Check out our conversation in the player to learn about Handling drunken holiday crowds, and don’t forget to hit subscribe and check out our homepage for more. We have new conversations every week, so stay tuned. Also, if you want to get some holiday shopping out of the way, we've got new items in the shop. I’ll see you next time!


Quick tips for bartenders – Episode 24.5

Some perfectly serviceable Crémant d'Alsace from my corner store. We've learned a ton of great stuff this month, and it's a lot to remember. Which is why I like to do these quick tips for bartenders episodes. It's sort of a recap of the past four episodes. And as has become tradition, I drink a bottle of wine from my corner store. This month it's a perfectly serviceable Crémant d'Alsace. This month, we had financial expert Sarah Brady talk about personal finance for bartenders in Episode 21. She suggested many simple changes you can make to improve you financial wellness. We also talked with counseling psychologist Brenna McHugh in Episode 22 about mental health in the bar industry. Brenna gave some excellent tips that you can use daily to improve your mental wellbeing. In Episode 23, I got to sit down with brand ambassador Keli Rivers and learn about the ins and outs of her career and how she made the transition from behind the bar. Finally, in Episode 24, I talked about the importance of taking breaks during this busy holiday season. I offered some advice on what has helped me feel more calm and grounded during my shifts. Be sure to check out this episode with all of these quick tips for bartenders like you in the player or wherever podcasts are found. Don't forget to hit subscribe, as we have new episodes every week on some of the most important topics in our industry. That’s all for this week, but be Sure to also visit our homepage for much, much more. Also, let me know what you think or if there’s anything you want to hear more of. Feel free to leave a comment or shoot me a message through our contact page. I’d love to hear from you! Be sure to sign up for our mailing list as well. It's another way to stay up to date with all of this great information. I'll see you next time!


It’s important to take breaks – Episode 24

It's important to take breaks, especially when it's busy. It's important to take breaks while working at the bar. Our jobs can be very stressful and fast paced, especially during the busy holiday season. Marathon weeks of holiday buyouts coupled with the general holiday frenzy and our own personal end of year woes create an unpleasant cocktail of stress, exhaustion and anxiety. And because we're so busy with work and everything else, it's easy to let other healthy habits of eating, drinking and exercise slip to the bottom of our priority list. If we don't give our minds and bodies time to catch up, the long term effects can be serious or even fatal. Many different studies show a significant increase of coronary related death during the holiday season. When you do take a break, it's important to really take a break. Standing in the walk-in and continuing to worry about what's happening on the floor isn't really taking a break. Your mind and body are still in a state of stress and anxiety. This is something I personally struggle with as well. For most of us, it's really challenging to let go and truly take a break. Although it may not feel like it, it really is ok to just stop thinking about the floor for a couple of minutes. Worrying about it isn't going to help the situation, and it will actually make things worse for you. And honestly, stepping away for a couple minutes isn't really going to affect service very much. Everything will still be there when you return, but you will be much better prepared to handle it because you gave yourself a chance to catch up. Check out my advice about taking breaks in this shorter episode, in the player or wherever podcasts are found. I know this holiday season is busy, so I'm giving you some quick advice to help get you through. You can even listen to this episode on your break if you want to. Be sure to visit our homepage for much, much more, and let me know how this is working out for you. You can leave a comment or send me a message through our contact page. Thanks so much for tuning in, and I’ll see you next time.


Becoming a brand ambassador – Episode 23: With Keli Rivers

Where do you go next in your career? It’s a scary question to ask. With so many directions to go in, it's hard to know where to begin. It's a question I’m also trying to figure out myself. One of the many options is to become a brand ambassador. It’s a dream that a lot of us have, and it can seem like a pretty magical career. Have you ever been to a brand sponsored event for bartenders? The brand ambassador is like a rockstar sometimes. But the job isn't all parties and company credit cards, it's a lot of hard work too. My guest today Keli Rivers, she’s been in hospitality for 26 years, all over the world. She helped open many bars including Whitechapel here in the city, and she’s now the brand ambassador for Sipsmith Gin. Keli shared a ton of great advice about how she navigated the transition from behind the bar to representing a brand and category that is really important to her. Hear what she had to say about her career and how she made the decisions that led her to where she is today. You can listen to our conversation in the player or wherever podcasts are found. Don't forget to hit subscribe and check out our homepage for much, much more. I'll see you next time!


Mental health in the bar industry – Episode 22: With Brenna McHugh

We've talked quite a bit about mental health in the bar industry on this show recently, and I don't think it's a subject we'll put to rest anytime soon. Bartending can be an incredibly taxing job. The sheer number of interactions we have with people every shift is mentally exhausting enough, not to mention all of the other challenges we face on top of that. Long, odd hours, low pay, physical labor and alcohol abuse can lead to mental health problems if we don't take care of ourselves. But what can we do, and how do we begin to change? My guest today is Brenna McHugh. She's worked in the industry for more than ten years as a bartender, national spirits judge and brand ambassador. Recently, Brenna completed her Master’s in Counseling Psychology from the Wright Institute in Berkeley, CA, with the specific goal of supporting mental health and career longevity in our industry. She currently works as a counselor at an inpatient substance abuse treatment center and leads talks and events about industry-wide mental health issues. Brenna shared so much helpful advice on mental health in the bar industry. So be sure to listen to our conversation in the player, or wherever podcasts are found. Please share this with your friends and colleagues in the industry too, this is advice that can benefit everyone. Check out our homepage for much, much more and don't forget to hit subscribe. I'll see you next time!