Working as a bartender at private events can be a lot of fun – but it can also be nerve-wracking! You may not have all of the equipment, ingredients, or space that you’re used to.

This week I thought it would be helpful to talk a little about what I bring when bartending off-site events, (or basically any bartending gig that’s not located at my normal bar.)

Here’s what to bring for your next Offsite Bartending Gig!

Tips for Bartending Private Events:

  • Over communicate with your client/customer to make sure you are both in agreement on what services & cocktails you will be providing. Don’t assume you (or they) understand already – you’d be surprised what’s obvious to us, but that event planners may not know!  (As an example, I was once given a champagne bucket of ice to serve cocktails for 300 guests!)
  • Even if you think you know what’s going to happen, still come prepared for anything.  I would recommend bringing all of the items discussed here regardless – worst case, leave them in your car!
  • Finally, remember: for every event that you execute well, you’ll be called for another one – so being prepared can absolutely pay for itself!  Be prepared & flexible and you will quickly gain a great reputation & lots of future event gigs!

Private Event Checklist:

Our checklist is out of date, but check out this much newer post for a better list of what you should bring!

Chris Tunstall

Co-Founder of A Bar Above and career bartender and mixologist. I love experimenting, creating cocktails, and drinking Green Chartreuse.