Community & Culture | mar. 24, 2021

Fundamentals of Bartending

Fundamentals of Bartending is a new program I have helped to create, launching from the Academia Patrón team (in conjunction with our primos” from the other brands in the Bacardi familia.) This program aims to build and diversify the hospitality profession by offering foundational education to novice bartenders so that they are enabled to confidently enter the workforce with bartending and spirit category knowledge. We formed this in partnership with Christiane Buggs, creator of the Virtual Bartending Academy based in Nashville, TN, Fundamentals of Bartending recently launched in February with an inaugural class of 50 application-based students. 

As part of Patrón’s desire to amplify voices of color within the hospitality field, Fundamentals of Bartending features attendees that are recruited from a network of local HBCU students who are interested in pursuing work and careers in bars and restaurants. Our inaugural launch of the program granted these 50 students with free education as well as a bar kit which provided all tools necessary to step behind the bar for the first time. As anyone like myself can recall, there are not a lot of opportunities to learn spirits education before getting that first job in the hospitality field, so we identified this gap in education in order to empower a new workforce.

Currently the format for Fundamentals of Bartending includes a primary session with Virtual Bartending Academy, which covers all introductory bartending skills. Included in this session students assessed Tools and learned each of their uses; were educated on how to set up a bar well for service; were guided through step-by-step instructions on how to cut garnishes; as well as the basics of mixing simple popular cocktails. Also covered were quintessential tips and tricks on how to excel in this new profession, such as focusing on the guest and providing the best service possible. I’ve always felt that the relationship with your guest is the most rewarding part of the job!

Fundamentals of Bartending takes place over two days, with 4 – 5 educational lessons. following the 101 education. Students are welcomed into spirit category training with seasoned professionals within the Bacardi Advocacy department. These sessions covered vodka with Grey Goose, rum with Bacardi rums, tequila with Patrón, whiskey with Bacardi whiskies, cognac with D’usse, gin with Bombay Sapphire, and vermouth/​liqueurs with Martini Rossi and St-Germain.

Fundamentals of Bartending is an exciting program which I am excited to work on, and we feel it really engages a new and more representative group of people in the spirits industry. Students are encouraged to continue to connect with Bacardi advocacy members and myself, with any questions or opportunities for mentorship which may arise. With this program we are looking towards the future, and are excited to potentially bring the event to a city near you!