It took thousands, nay, millions of years for humankind to evolve to the point where its opposable thumbs allowed the species to finally achieve success in its tumultuous struggle to twist open a beer.

--The Official Harvard Student Agencies Bartending Course, 3rd Edition

Welcome to the Wikibooks Bartending Guide. This is a work-in-progress, written and edited by ordinary people, both with extensive and limited knowledge about bartending. Upon completion, this book could serve as a textbook giving a person new to bartending a good overview of bartending as a career. It will also contain a guide to bar layout, equipment, drinkware, utensils, and other tools of the trade. What book would be complete without comprehensive information about the various types of alcohol, mixers, and garnishes used to make cocktails and other mixed drinks? Our drink recipe library also is quite extensive, with both historical and very modern cocktails included.

Although the terms "bar", "bartender", and "bartending" are used throughout the book, that is just for simplicity. A bar in this book includes a public house, pub, nightclub, tavern, meeting place, fraternal organization, hotel, restaurant, private home, or any other place that serves alcoholic beverages. A bartender is a person in the bar preparing drinks for people, which is not necessarily the same person who serves the drinks. Bartending refers to the many tasks a bartender performs and the duties expected of the bartender; it also refers to the industry in which bartenders work.

At present, the book strongly reflects the bartending industry of the United States, and to lesser degrees, the United Kingdom and Canada. Wherever possible, we have attempted to include a worldwide view of the industry, but since most of the current contributors are from the U.S., U.K., and Canada, we need the help of people to add relevant local information about the industry in their own countries to the book.

Please refer to Appendix C for suggestions on how you can help improve this textbook. If you plan to edit occasionally or more often, please join the WikiProject Bartending so we can work together in a coordinated manner to complete this book. Thanks!

We hope you enjoy this book and find it useful!