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Food & Drink » Chow

The Efficiency

It would be extremely efficient if the bar was like a coffee shop and there was one line where people ordered and one place where


It would be extremely efficient if the bar was like a coffee shop and there was one line where people ordered and one place where they picked up. No one would ever get missed, everyone would wait the exact same amount of time for a drink, and nobody would ever wait for change or a credit card slip. But that isn't the bar. The lackluster appeal in ordering a double skinny latte doesn't compete with the excitement to snuggle in next to the girl you've thought was hot all night as you order your next beer or to buy your buddies liquid cocaine shots from across the way. I've spent years streamlining the back end of the bar from moving around refrigerators to revolutionizing the way we do prep. But I have yet to figure out how to streamline the guest. However, I have begun my fact-finding research and these are the most vicious of the clock milkers when ordering a drink.

The first is the Long Drink Orderer. The LDO insists on finding the longest way possible to tell you his drink order. Typically the LDO drinks simple highballs, so it seems that the LDO could order quickly by getting straight to the point. However, that is not the LDO's nature as he finds comfort in using 16 words when only two or three would suffice. For example, instead of saying rum and coke with a lime or cuba libre, the LDO insists on each time spouting out, "coca cola with your well rum with ice in a bucket with a slice of lime."

The next is the "I'm-going-to-order-for-my-friends-but-they-don't-know-what-they-want" customer. This guy has good intentions; he has manhandled his way up to the bar, staked his claim, and finally has the bartender's attention. But once he has her attention, he turns his back for ten minutes while he and his friends decide what they want to drink.

The last dysfunctional guest is the Whisperer. Sometimes I think that it is a ploy as the whisperer speaks so quietly that I have to lean in so close that I fear him jamming his tongue in my ear. But then it occurs to me that the Whisperer is just trying to be über polite in an atmosphere that resembles the library about as much as Times Square resembles Walden Pond. Unfortunately, the whisperer must always repeat his drink order three or four times before it can be understood.

Now that I've compiled the data I can finally start working on how to create the perfect bar guest.

The Efficiency: Kahlua & Coffee

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