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Feb 23, 2011 05:54 AM

Does the Bartender even remember good Tips?

This has been on my mind for a while and often see good responses about Tipping in general. I have always been a gracious tipper , even if the server was not that great. Especially with bartenders, I feel as while sitting at the bar its more of a personal touch. Although, recently I've noticed most do not even look at what they were given.

Is is true to assume, if you tip well you will get better service or are you only as good as your last envelope ?

I do not tip for self gratification and do not expect anything more than normal service, however I hate to just waste money ( I need myself) .

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  1. Let's put it this way, a bartender won't necessarily remember a "good" tip but they will almost certainly remember a bad one. But in general a good tip on the first round will make an impact on a bartender.

    What are you leaving as a tip? Because what you consider a good tip may just be average.

    5 Replies
    1. re: reatard

      I normally tip at the end of the session.. and it will depend on the final bill. I have been starting to go to a new place and want to make nice on first visits so $10 for a $20 tab.... I dont really have a ryhme or reason for my tipping methods..

      What really erks me is group tip jars... I will have GREAT service from one person (that i want to tip ) and the other person just is taking up space

      1. re: Augie6

        <I normally tip at the end of the session.. >

        I think, unless you are running a tab, that this might not be the best strategy. I tip on every round. A bartender has a constantly changing (and often mobile) group of customers, unlike a table server. Not tipping right from the get go could signal that you don't intend to tip at all.

        1. re: Augie6

          Tipping a bartender at the end doesn't have the same impact unless you become a regular but your tip is very genrous. If I were you I'd leave $5 after the first round.

          The tip jar is completely out of your hands, just let that go.

        2. re: reatard

          So true on the bad tips.

          Almost everyone left me 20%, which i appreciated, but the only people who really stood out were the crazy tippers, either crazy high OR crazy low.

          1. re: reatard

            That's true,i bartend and I make sure to remember people that tip good. Also they will get better service, more buy backs and stronger drinks. I have a customer who comes in and orders a food special($5 burger or sandwich....depending on the day) and a water and bitches because he doesnt get fries. I hate people like this and could care less if the come back. I told him to go to McDonalds and see if your fries come withyour big get what you pay for in life and the bar is the same way. Bartenders work for tips and notice when people take care of them!!!!!!

          2. You expect nothing more than normal service......but based on your accounts, if you are not receiving better than normal's time to reduce your tip to standard formulas or what you are comfortable with, e.g., if the bartender doesn't recognize and greet you when you first enter and acknowledge your presence....if he cannot recall a customer who has left him a 50% tip on a previous visit....he doesn't deserve anything above 15-20%.

            I always tip at the end......running a tab, the bartender knows exactly what is left over after you settle the bill.

            1. I consider myself a very generous tipper, and I've found that bartenders generally remember something about me in return visits. On my second visit to an establishment, provided that I get the same bartender and return within a few weeks of my initial visit, the bartender will usually remember either my name, my drink or both. If it's one or the other, it's usually my drink. By my third visit they almost unequivocally remember one or the other. By my fourth or fifth visit generally all of the bartenders at the establishment know my name and drink, and, oftentimes, my drink is being poured before I even sit down.

              So, yeah, in my experience, they seem to remember...

              1. When I bartended I did indeed remember good tippers, and which regulars who were good tippers. I'd have their drink of choice on the bar when I saw them heading over, and they loved that. We also remember people who are pleasant to deal with, people who are rude and people who don't tip. At least I did.

                As a patron there is only one place I go to with any regularity.....they know I tip well and give me good service, they also allow me to run a tab (it's not policy there) and generally treat me well. Servers also appreciate the patron who will say "Finish what you're doing" or "no rush" when they are busy/hands full etc and will always get to you as quick as they can, as opposed to the grump drumming his fingers while they try to juggle a tray of shooters they are pouring ;-)

                1 Reply
                1. re: crazee

                  crazee, I can confirm almost identical service to that you describe in your post.

                  I also always like it when I see the bartender preparing my drink or having my drink ready before I even sit down.

                  As to your other points, I always try to be as pleasant as possible to my servers, and I would like to think that they remember me for this as well, but I've always thought it more likely because of my tipping protocol. For example, I, too, am one to always say "finish what you're doing" or "no rush" if my server seems harried in any way, or even if the bar is a little more full than normal.

                  And, unlike you, I frequent a number of bars, almost all of which generally require patrons to submit a card to run a tab or pay as they go; like you, however, I am never asked to give more than my drink order.

                2. It refreshing to hear this feedback .. As 50% is not my standard tip, at a new place a want them to know I do appreciate the extra details...Names are exceptional,... but style of beer I like or at least a convo we had makes you want to com back. I always run a tab at bars... do not like paying as I go

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: Augie6

                    Okay, hang on a second.

                    You "always run a tab," but you've "noticed most [bartenders] do not even look at what they were given." Sorry, but that just doesn't compute.

                    Assuming that you ran a tab on a credit card, your tip is on the charge slip. The barkeep can review and evaluate it at leisure. It would be really crass to scrutinize the paperwork and give you a thumbs up (or down) based on your tip for the evening. But only the truly clueless will fail to notice the amount.

                    1. re: alanbarnes

                      It was more along the lines of remembering the tip and not just having my receipt in the pile by the register. Does the tip and name go together or is it just a number in a crowd. I think everyone is on the same page, clueless ones will fail! lol

                      By the way, one of the best pics I've seen on here, Great Dog and Great beer!!

                      1. re: Augie6

                        it's people's livelihood. trust me, they notice.

                        you could always test this by stiffing the bts several times, then reporting back to this thread whether they seem to notice at all ;-P

                        just kidding about that. bts may seem casual about the cash because to seem overly concerned about it comes off as greedy/grabby, to the customer-- which nobody likes. but the bt sees every receipt, every dollar bill on the bar, every ticket at the service window, and every nearly empty glass in front of a customer. observation is an essential part of a bt's job, most just have the poise and flair to not appear as if they are watching absolutely everything going on at the bar. i still remember my regulars' drinks from 15 years ago. . . there are no "faces/numbers in a crowd."

                        1. re: soupkitten

                          Your comments are 100% correct and mirror my experiences and attitude as a bartender.