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It’s January. You made it. Whether you’re still asleep or still haven’t made it to bed, it’s a bright shiny new year with endless possibilities. What are your resolutions?

Here’s some inspiration to get you started – (inspired by my own!)

New Years Resolutions for Bartenders:


  • Go to a bar and try to just enjoy the experience instead of analyzing every single little detail of their service the whole time.
  • Go to a distillery tour and don’t end up spending $200 on three bottles of spirits, even if they are delicious…and you’d be supporting a small, local distillery…maybe just $100…?
  • Increase your knowledge of mezcal.
  • Find non-braggy opportunities to share your newfound knowledge of mezcal.
  • Go to networking events with other bartenders to covertly scope out better places to work…and maybe also to find more opportunities to talk about mezcal…
  • Learn the differences between whiskey vs. whisky vs. Whiskey vs. VS…
  • Once you learn the differences, don’t correct every person on Facebook who uses the wrong term…except maybe that ONE annoying guy from high school, but only the one!
  • Wear a step-tracker during your shift and join fitness challenges with non-bartenders who have the time and energy to go to the gym — besides, who needs the gym when you have the Saturday night shift?
  • Remember to take off your step tracker at night so you can stay in denial about how little you sleep.
  • See a bottle of craft bitters you don’t own and casually walk by it without buying it.
  • Experiment with making new, original varieties of bitters for your bar.
  • Learn not to take someone disliking celery bitters as a personal offense.
  • When someone orders a bartender’s choice cocktail with egg whites, make something besides a Clover Club.
  • When someone orders a bartender’s choice cocktail with Amaretto, make something besides a Godfather.
  • Convince your boss to let you add some incredible spirit-free cocktails to the menu.
  • Develop a very calm, level-headed reply for when that one customer who doesn’t even order the spirit-free cocktails challenges you on why they’re “so expensive” (BECAUSE THEY’RE DELICIOUS AND ORIGINAL AND THE INGREDIENTS ARE COMPLEX!!!)
  • Try not to cringe at the very thought of prepackaged sour mix, even if it is abhorrent because you can’t adjust the balance of sour and sweet so it ruins any cocktail it’s in, plus it tastes terrible, and don’t get you started on the immorality intrinsic in the fact that anyone would have the audacity to produce and sell this garbage to living humans…
  • Accept the things you cannot change — like the fact that some people will always find eggs in cocktails gross, no matter how delicious & essential to cocktail history they are.
  • Change the things you cannot accept — for those who avoid raw-egg white drinks, encourage them to try those great cocktails with powdered egg whites or aquafaba!
  • Say “cheers” more often outside the bar — why not take every chance to toast the lovely people in your life?

Happy & healthy new year, everyone! Cheers!

Kate Herzlin

Kate Herzlin is a New York-based playwright, screenwriter and comedy writer who overuses the rule of three. Her work can be seen in McSweeney's, The Belladonna, Slackjaw, Robot Butt, Points in Case and Little Old Lady Comedy. As a cocktail fangirl/enthusiast, she finds joy in properly stirred cocktails and doesn't understand what James Bond was thinking.