10 Etiquette Rules for Customers at Beer Bars & Breweries

YEW Staff
Written by YEW Staff

These offenses are not ranked in any specific order of terribleness. They are based on the writer’s personal experience, thought process, and information given by other beertenders.

Disclaimer: We recognize that most patrons are super freaking awesome and that you are the reason we love our jobs! This post is for those who don’t recognize the “Unwritten Rules” of society (Larry David reference). Please read on and enjoy a quick rant on the top beertender pet peeves.

1. Do not attempt to order a beer while you continue a conversation on your cell phone. You may either tell the person on the other line to “hold on” and order your beer like a human being, or you may walk away until you are done with your conversation and get back in line.

2. Do not ask for samples of every beer on the board. I personally say the limit is three. If you ask for more than said limit do you really even want a beer? A tip; give the beertender a smidgen of information on what you usually drink or what style you are craving and they will be more than happy to help you find something you will enjoy.

3. Don’t be offended by us asking to look at your IDs. This is our job, and it is not worth loosing over your $7 beer. Make sure your license is valid as well. Don’t bring in your expired license and get pissed when we do our jobs.

4. Never snap your fingers or wave obnoxiously to get your beertender’s attention. Chances are we have seen you and are busy with either another customer or some other aspect of our job. A good beertender would never intentionally ignore a customer, as we like money too much. Also snapping? What the heck are you doing, calling over a horse?

5. Don’t assume your female beertender knows less about beer than her male counterpart. That is just straight up ignorant. If she is working behind the bar at a respectable company she is probably way more educated in the craft than the majority of dudes coming in and asking for Pliny the Younger in June.

6. If you plan on having more than one beer, keep your tab open. We don’t judge if you have more than one beverage, we judge when you make us swipe your card multiple times while we are busy. Drink responsibly and pay responsibly.

7. Last call is your last chance to order a beer. This does not mean you come over 15 minutes later and order. It means if you need another beer this is your last chance. Don’t try and ask us if you can chug a beer 2 minutes before we close. Get yourself in an Uber and head over to the local dive bar that’s open till 2 a.m. if you need a drink.

8. Don’t assume you have your beertenders attention just because they are within earshot. If they are helping another customer, simply respect that the attention is on that individual and not on you. Long story short, don’t try to group your order in with a patron that is currently being helped. This is just plain rude and is a common concept taught in Kindergarten. Wait your turn!

9. When there is an obvious line at the bar, please be prepared to order your beverage once you reach the front of the line. If you are waiting, scan the menu, determine your options and have your drink chosen once you reach the bar. If you reach the front of the line and start asking for a bunch of samples like you’re at a goddamn Baskin Robbins, be prepared for everyone to hate you. It’s not like you’re choosing the name of your first born child. You are choosing a beer so buck up and drink up.

10. Do not try and open a tab with cash.   This doesn’t happen often but it does happen. We refuse to be responsible for deducting money from your $100 bill that you just hand us. You may continue to pay with cash while you order your drinks, or start a tab with a card and then close out with cash. Those are your options…final word.

And there you have it…..simple rules from a select few beertenders. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but always make sure you respect your fellow human beings and continue to enjoy delicious craft beer! Don’t forget to tip your beertender!



Kelly Cashman is a woman who enjoys long walks to the bar, writing about beer, and fighting with her cat, Catillon. She occasionally writes for an intergalactic beer blog named Beer Alien, mostly interviewing her vain friends in the industry but occasionally putting something of importance out in the world.

You can follow Kelly on Instagram @beer.kat or just go give her your money at Bottlecraft Solana Beach. She might even give you beer in exchange.

About the author

YEW Staff

YEW Staff