There has been an ongoing debate for a very long time on the difference between mixologists and bartenders. You also might argue that both of them serve drinks to people, so how can they be different from each other? But if you delve deep and look closely, you will find specific unique differences between the two. In this article, we will precisely pinpoint the difference between mixologists and bartenders to make your career choices easy. But, first, let’s understand the two first.
As per the name, a bartender is a professional who operates or serves at a bar. The primary job of a bartender is to serve the customers their choices of drinks that are available at the bar. Drinks include alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, beers, cocktails, wine, scotch, whiskey, mocktails, etc. A good bartender is skilled enough to take orders, mix ingredients and prepare them without wasting a single drop and that too while chatting with guests, cleaning, and tidying up the bar area.
As the name suggests, a mixologist is a specialist whose area of expertise lies in preparing delicious and unique cocktails and other forms of alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks. They flourish in the process of perfecting the art and science of mixology to create some finest drinks.
If you are confused about whether to hire a mixologist or a bartender for your upcoming event, we would say to consider your plans on serving liquor to the guests. If you want to help your guests with a unique range of mixed drinks rather than the standard bar menu, then it’s better to go for a mixologist. You can also look for bartenders who are also mixologists and vice versa.
Mixologist vs. bartender jobs
Usually, a bartender takes care of the bar area, including serving the guests and preparing the bar area. Some reputed bars look forward to hiring mixologists to create a unique cocktail menu that will attract more customers to the bar. So, it becomes easy for the bar owners to find someone better at handling the bar counter and create fresh, delicious drinks for the guests - a bartender who is also a mixologist.
Which career choice is right for you?
While considering career opportunities, you might have seen people using the terms - mixologist and bartender interchangeably. Some job ads even confused more by using the title ‘bartender,’ but in the job description, they seek mixologist professionals.
If you are looking to become either a bartender, mixologist or both, you should remember that both are professionals that complement one another. But if you are still in doubt, then our recommendation would be to consider your passion before applying for a job.
Suppose you are more inclined to mix cocktails and evolve the current menu rather than focusing on providing a great customer experience. In that case, becoming a mixologist will make more sense to you.
On the other hand, if you believe in providing excellent customer satisfaction by addressing their liquor requirements and at the same time enjoying quality conversation with them, then you are more suited to become a good bartender.
Bonus: While going for the interview, ask the employer directly about their views on mixologists vs. bartenders. It’s a sure-fire way to make a good impression at your next interview.