Monday, February 28, 2011

The Monster That Mixology Created

Camper English mulls over this headache that the craft-cocktail movement has probably created: snobbish and boorish clientele. His dissent finds a bright side:
"Bartenders can celebrate: They’ve succeeded in educating their customers."
But, he warns, that haughty customer attitude may be better explained as a mirroring of pretentiousness among some bartenders:
"Snobbery goes both ways, however. The customers may simply be reflection of — and comeuppance for — the pompous attitude some bartenders have assumed lately. It just goes to prove that he who offers many bitters will eventually get a taste of them."
The truth of Camper's assessment, I suspect, is hidden and scattered somewhere in the middle of these awkward bar moments. As an aware customer, I have encountered rude responses to what I thought were innocuous questions. This harshness has even come from mixologists that I have admired. 

At the same time, I've caught myself uttering my own arrogant reply to customers - and I'm not even working in a craft-cocktail type of place. My guess is that a majority of aspiring cocktailians find themselves confronted with similar circumstances. We're all a work-in-progress.

I love Camper's blog and articles. I admire his desire to discuss ideas that are normally tossed around in a bartender's mind and yet he's never been a full-time barkeep. Impressive.

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