Authentic Bartending School
Conan O’Brien walks into an authentic bar tending school, that’s actually the name, on 34th Street in New York and decides if he’s going to do this, he’s going to take a camera crew. He learns how to be a bartender and when its all over he thinks he’s “damn good now.” Since its captured on film, it should hopefully be a good lesson for at home bar tenders as well. Here’s the highlights from what happened when instructor Jerry (JR) schools Conan (CO) in bartending the ‘Authentic’ way.
CO: This is my instructor. This is Jerry. Hey Jerry, how are you doing?
JR: Nice to meet you Conan.
CO: Yeah, good to meet you.
Basic Cocktails and Specialty Drinks
JR: I’m going to teach you the basics, the ones that you’re definitely going to need to know when you go out and work.
CO: But I also want to know some of the specialty drinks. JR: Such as?
CO: Have you ever heard of the Kissinger’s Eyebrow? JR: No.
Kissinger’s Eyebrow Drink Recipe:
- little bit grenadine
- actual eyebrow hair from Henry Kissinger for garnish
Preparation - getting the garnish can be a hairy experience so have the eyebrow first or drink will be ruined. Apparently former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger lives in Connecticut so its a bus trip up from New York, or wherever home is, to go see him. He doesn’t give up the hairs easily and he’ll be like “What are you doing?”
Once plucked, put aside for safekeeping. Add first three ingredients to cocktail shaker with ice. Shake well and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Carefully add Kissinger’s eyebrow hair as garnish. Enjoy.
How To Properly Handle Glassware
JR: You don’t ever want to touch the glass from the top.
CO: Never touch the top, only the bottom.
JR: Well, because people are going to drink from there and you don’t want to touch it cause then they’ll have to drink from there and they’ll have to touch your ..
CO: And you don’t ever want it to like brush past your ass.
JR: Never, no.
CO: That would be bad and like, hey here’s your drink (brushes glass past his crotch). Sorry.
JR: Well it depends what kind of bar you work in.
CO: People come to a bar if you believe Cocktail (the movie) to see some flash (tries to pour liquor into a drink).
JR: You’ve got the pourer upside down so nothing ..
CO: What happened, what happened. Nothing came out?
JR: Well, see, this is the hole.
CO: I actually thought that you tipped it over and gravity would take over, so that would be an easy pour ..
JR: Three counts ..
CO: Three counts. One, two, three and then I stop. When I stop it, my move .. see if you like it. I stop and then go (holds hand over top of glass) and that’s it.
Explicit Drink Names
CO: Hey can we make sex on the beach?
JR: You want to make that?
CO: Yeah, cause I love it when people are like “I’ll have sex on the beach” and you wanna go like, OK. You know what I mean?
JR: Do you think you can get the one liquor drink done? Its simple like rum and coke.
CO: Yeah, I got that, let’s move up to the next level. What you’re dealing with is you’re a piano teacher and Mozart just walked in and you’re making me play chopsticks. Do you see the analogy?
CO: I want to learn this thing, what’s this thing called?
JR: Soda gun.
CO: Soda gun .. can I call it the snake?
Bar Fights And Crowd Control
CO: Lets say I’m in an altercation ..
JR: Well, you’d go around that way ..
CO: And I’d be like .. WHAT’S YOUR PROBLEM? HEY, THIS IS MY BAR!
JR: You want to sort of make it ..
CO: Alright that did it, I’m coming over there. I don’t want to then just walk over ..
JR: Right, you want to make a statement.
CO: I want to be like .. ITS GO TIME MY FRIEND!
JR: OK, Conan what you do, you want to ..
CO: (rolls over the bar) .. Got a problem with me? Oh, I’m sorry I misheard.
Slapstick Comedy And Straw Darts
Conan and Jerry each grab four bottles of liquor and try to pour all eight at once into one glass. Hilarity ensues. Finished, Conan starts throwing straws like darts at the top of drink trying to pierce through the layer of ice cubes and stick it up standing inside the drink. Third try with the straw sticks.
CO: How do tips work. Do they put tips down on the bar?
JR: Yeah, if they’re going to tip you Conan, what you do is you give them their change back and usually what they’ll do is leave it on the bar rail to let you know that that’s your money.
CO: So, they put it here (points to rail behind bar).
JR: Now I want to let you know something, if people have money right here, right in front of them, don’t touch it because its not yours yet.
CO: So can I use like a dust buster or dirt devil and keep it behind the bar and if they have some money here to use for something else (makes vacuum noise) ..
What To Do If A Drink Recipe Stumps You
JR: Conan, I didn’t have a lot of time to teach you a lot of drinks. Just remember, if someone asks you to make a drink and you don’t know what it is ..
CO: Say, what am I .. your mother? What if somebody asks me for a Long Beach Iced Tea?
JR: OK, do you want me to go over there and do it for real?
CO: Yeah, yeah ..
JR: OK, I just walk up to the bar Conan ..
CO: Yeah, yeah ..
JR: You would greet me ..
CO: Hey, how are you?
JR: I’ve been better but um, how bout a Long Beach Iced Tea?
CO: I’m sorry we’re closed.
Bartending School Report Card
After acting out in class as a coaster ninja, throwing coasters across the room instead of with a light touch across the bar trying to get it in front of the patron, Jerry evaluates Conan’s overall performance at the school of bartending.
JR: I’m trying to help you here as a counselor, and I’m trying to be your friend, but um, you’re just not going to make it.
CO: You just told me I can’t do it and you know what, when I’m told I can’t do it I get depressed. I usually give up and don’t try. This time is different, I’m gonna try for half an hour. I’m going to a bar right now.
Conan Walks Into A Bar - Don’t Try This At Home
Oscar temporarily steps aside as bartender at the Bull & Bear to give Conan a shot at a bartending career and ..
- - Watch the video - -
“That was a lot of fun. Of course, my hat goes off to every Jerry Lewis film* I saw as a child.” ~ Conan O’Brien
*- Note: Jerry Lewis in the Nutty Professor movie has a funny bartending scene where he orders the infamous Alaskan Polar Bear Heater cocktail.