My very first cocktail job seems like ages ago! I came from being a Hooters Girl straight into the lions den. The casino. Luckily, I was able to ease my way into it because I was hired as a lounge girl first. (i.e. not on the casino floor)
I’ve never held a tray in my life at this point. At Hooters we just used our hands. Couldn’t balance a tray for shit, but I could carry three sodas and three bottles of beer in my hands like a pro.
So here we go. My training was coming up. I complained about it for days. I was so nervous, how am I going to carry this tray? Literally, it gave me anxiety, couldn’t sleep over it. Nightmares of dropping my tray. I tried everything not to go. I wanted to make up some bogus excuse. My boyfriend at the time convinced me to go and get it over with. Plus, I couldn’t go back to Hooters my time there was done. The day they made me go on the boardwalk and play leap frog like a circus animal, it was over. No turning back.
So I went ….
The girl who trained me was super cute, nice, and she looked like a professional cocktail server, if there’s such an image. She handed me a tray and ofcourse asked, “Have you ever cocktailed before?” I answered no, and she replied, “It’s easy.”
It was only her working the whole lounge that night. She looked pretty busy. After showing me the computer, she actually told me to take the other half of the room. Wow, she believed in me! I dove into this cocktail thing head first. The tray was uncomfortable and I probably looked awkward as hell. Old dudes were hitting on me and being gross per usual. I was already use to that from Hooters. In this biz if you don’t have thick skin, forget it.
On my break everyone had been texting me how it was going. I replied casually, still not that confident, and went on with my shift. After a few hours, my trainer said I could probably leave. I organized my tips and handed them to her. You see, the rule is, when you’re training you don’t take any tips because you’re getting paid a training rate, not the usual 2-4 dollars waitresses, waiters and cocktail servers make. (a note for all you
non- tippin asses out there.)
I was surprised, she told me to keep the tips and she’ll see me the following day. I didn’t really count the tips because I knew they weren’t for me. But boy, when I saw I made a bazzillion dollars in just a few hours! I was only serving drinks, had my own bus boy and I was “training”. I’ll tell you what, I was never scared of that damn tray again! This was triple the money and less work compared to serving wings. It was like the arch angels singing in my ears. That was my golden spoon, my new bestie. I loved that damn tray. Still do.
Now, carrying martini glasses, I’m still scared to death of them! Lmao
All good things do come to an end they say. I worked in that lounge for the summer because I was seasonal. Meaning just hired for the busy summer months. Luckily, not long after that I landed a bottler server job for 4 years $$$$$ Then ended up at my first job cocktailing on the casino floor.
Which is way different then serving in a lounge or night club. Drinks are free on the casino floor and it’s a totally different beast.
I remember my first day cocktailing on the floor too. I was lost. Could not find my way around the slot machines. It was a colorful maze and I was stressed the hell out. A seasoned cocktail server looked at me and said, “This job is so easy a monkey could to do it.” I laughed. Every-time I think of her saying that I really picture a little monkey actually cocktailing. It didn’t take long to get used to the stations. She was right it was easy.
I was at this casino for about 6/7 years, made some great friends, was inspired to write this blog, and have some of the best stories and memories forever. Plus made some really good money!
And now here I am, cocktailing at one of the newest and busiest casinos in Atlantic City. Who would of thought my little scared ass would be cocktailing this long and even create a blog about it. I’m a lifer now…
All that’s left is to take over the world one cocktail at a time …
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Drink of the week, a popular casino cocktail –