By The Tahona Society Editorial Team
Every Problem Brings its Solution
Dré Masso, co-creator of Altos tequila
Feb 21, 2023
By: Dré Masso, co-creator of Altos Tequila @DREMASSO
Twenty-five years ago, it was normal and emblematic in our bartending culture to drink occasional shots behind the bar. It gave us adrenaline to get through the shift and doubled our exhaustion by the end of the night! This social practice was expected by guests, who wanted their bartenders to join them for a shot or a toast upon request.
But after all of these years working behind the bar, we realize now that this custom, and the culture that created it, are outdated at best, and one of the most damaging parts of the industry at worst. Discover why…
As we get older, our body, for better or for worse, makes its limits clear. Thankfully, we have the emotional maturity and common sense to listen to it! Now we can say NO when we know that taking a drink will not serve us.
Remember: Our well-being comes first, and what goes into our body must honor this principle.
I no longer drink during my shifts. And, perhaps a bit unexpectedly, I have never enjoyed being behind the bar as much as I do now. It has taken me a while to figure this out, but I want longevity in this industry because it is an industry I love, and through which I have been able to develop and express my creativity, professionalism and appreciation for people.
If you want to last in the bartending industry, you can’t blur the line between the role that alcohol might play in a social celebration and the effect it can have on a professional who is doing their job.
Our profession has matured. It is inspiring to see young people embracing bartending as a creative, long-term profession and avoiding the mistakes that so many bartenders of my generation made.
This new perspective can be seen in small but meaningful actions, such as simply saying “no thanks, I don’t drink during my shift,” as well as in the current general culture of open conversation and awareness around self-care, mental health, welfare and professionalism.
Today, more new bartenders are being smart about the context they work in, and wise about how they decide to engage.
As we evolve beyond the limiting beliefs and outdated concepts that no longer serve us as individuals and as an industry, we can move forward more purposefully and honor the traditions of dignified hospitality, people-centered service, and the inherent creative innovation of our profession.