Bartender Theft – Over Pouring Liquor for Larger Tips – Not Ringing in Drinks Right Away – The Infamous Drink “Hook-Up” – Grouping Drink Orders to Mask Bar Theft


Bartender Summary

  • Bartender 1: Caucasian male with short brown hair. He had a slender build and wore a black button up shirt. He was identified as Xxxxxx.

Xxxxxx was very friendly and personable. He welcomed patrons as they approached his bar, and chatted with near by patrons during down times. He was located at the small bar near the patio, and next to the dance floor. He did not introduce himself when addressing the agent.

The agent approached Xxxxxx’s bar and was immediately greeted by him. He asked the agent for a drink order. He took the agent’s drink order, and quickly prepared the drinks. He served the drinks on the bar’s spill mats without napkins. He then advised the agent of the cost. After the agent asked to open a tab, Xxxxxx asked for a credit card. He started the tab on the POS and kept the card.

The agent proceeded to order the same drinks from all of the service staff in the establishment in order to see if there was a pattern in the amount charged for the drinks.

The agent found that all bar staff charged the same amount for the drinks they served whether the agent was paying with a credit card or with cash.

At the end of the agent’s evaluation with Xxxxxx, the tab was closed quickly and reflected the correct drink orders. Xxxxxx did not present his check in a black check presenter. Rather, he left the receipt on the bar top with a pen placed on it. The agent did not witness Xxxxxx give away any drinks, or do any over pours.

However, the agent was informed by a server that Xxxxxx would “hook up” people who he liked. In fact, the server who informed the agent of this took the agent’s order and returned with a double of the drink that was ordered. She attributed the stronger drink to Xxxxxx, and said the agent should get the rest of the drinks from him.

The agent tried to receive a similar “hook up” later on. Xxxxxx was not as generous in his pour to the agent as he was to the server.

  • Bartender 2: Caucasian male with a bald head and muscular build. He had a tribal tattoo on his right arm. His name tag identified him as Xxxxxx.

Xxxxxx was pretty friendly to the patrons he served. The agent observed him servicing patrons with a positive demeanor and a professional urgency. He would serve drinks and then immediately ring them into the POS system and collect payment.

Xxxxxx was busy when the agent approached the bar, but still made eye contact with the agent within 30 seconds. He finished collecting payment for the drink he had just served, and proceeded to service the agent.

He asked the agent for a drink order. He then attempted to up sell the drink to a premium liquor.  He served the drink on the bar using cocktail napkins, then announced the cost of the drink order. He collected payment and made change appropriately, and accurately.

Xxxxxx did not give away any drinks during the evaluation period. Likewise, Xxxxxx input every drink order that he served into the POS and collected payment or credit card. The agent was pleased by his work ethic, demeanor, and honesty during the evaluation.

Xxxxxx was very good about using a jigger to measure his pour. At no time did the agent see him free pour drinks, or over pour drinks. Drink orders were an appropriate size, and always garnished properly and placed on cocktail napkins.

  • Bartender 3: Caucasian female with no name tag. She had brown hair that she wore in a pony tail, and hoop earrings.

The agent observed that bartender 3 could frequently free pour her drinks, and then over pour many of them. Additionally, her work demeanor seemed rushed and disorganized. She poured drinks and served them to patrons who placed their empty glassware on the bar. She collected payment and input the orders into the POS and then moved on to a new drink order without removing the nearby empty glassware from the bar. As a result the area around her was often filled with dirty glasses and napkins on the bar.

The agent did not witness this bartender giving away any drinks during the evaluation period. All of her drinks were served in the appropriate glass sizes. However, as mentioned earlier, the bartender’s pours were not consistent and often heavy.

  • Bartender 4: Caucasian male with a thicker build. He was identified as Xxxxxx.

Xxxxxx was very abrasive and a little rude. At one point, the agent observed Xxxxxx very sternly tell a patron that happy hour had ended, thus beers now cost more. The agent believes that Xxxxxx rubbed a lot of patrons the wrong way and seemed angry.

Xxxxxx did use cocktail napkins, and cleaned the bar around him when serving drinks

The agent also observed that Xxxxxx would often group ring in his orders. He would take and server at least two orders before ringing in all of the orders into the POS. The agent believes that the practice of group ring ins to be very dangerous as there is a tendency to make mistakes, or mis-rings when the bartender gets overwhelmed. He may very well be using this technique to mask bar theft; however, it cannot be substantiated.

Agent recommends that management instruct bartenders that this method or ringing is strictly prohibited and any further occurrences will be viewed as a theft occurrence.

Michael Zenner CEO  

hospitality checkpoints Inc.  (blog)
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