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Thoughts

Thoughts

Surviving the booze-pocalypse

With the supply of bar staples still faltering, Mike Baxter says there’s an opportunity to reshape tastes

Thoughts

How to attract homegrown talent to bartending

Edmund Weil sets out a ‘manifesto’ for  attracting more people into hospitality roles.

Thoughts

Diary of a bar owner during a staffing crisis

The staffing crisis has seen many bar owners becoming more hands-on in their businesses. Danny Murphy of Berry & Rye Group diarises the experiences he and other operators have had, with a little literary licence to disassociate events, dates and the people involved.

Thoughts

Do classic cocktails limit spirits innovation?

Is the bar trade's devotion to classic recipes limiting the space for the next generation of spirits development, asks Ryan Chetiyawardana

Thoughts

Is the bar business still profitable?

Not wanting to get caught out again following the pandemic-induced financial nightmare, Iain McPherson has been busy looking at ways to diversify income and adding revenue streams to the existing business.

Thoughts

Is the ride over? How the pandemic changed the global bar industry

Edmund Weil reflects on the carousel of global travel events that used to characterise the industry – and wonders if it will ever return to its glory days.

Thoughts

"We're at a critically important moment for the hospitality industry"

Revisiting his home town gave Jake O'Brien Murphy reason to question the way the cocktail scene is constructed and perceived – and left him longing for a more progressive, inclusive future.

Thoughts

86 experience (the freshman invasion)

With experienced staff in short supply, Mike Baxter rethinks the way he trains rookies.

Thoughts

Seated but not defeated: the future of table service

What seemed like a volume bar’s worst nightmare actually proved a valuable lesson in how adapting and evolving could lead to more efficient service and improved profitability. By Mike Baxter of Gonzo’s Tea Room.

Thoughts

Power in numbers: why I joined a union

Jake O'Brien Murphy has had it with being treated disrespectfully and decided to join a union. He now at least feels backed up against those who are using the pandemic to their financial advantage.

Thoughts

The hook: how we should be incentivising bartending

Edmund Weil says the industry needs to rethink how it rewards its staff if it is to survive the current challenges – and that goes beyond monetary compensation.

Thoughts

Breaking down the server-guest barrier

There are certain smart moves that a bartender can make to break down server/guest barriers and build new connections, says Danny Murphy.

Thoughts

The new brand-bar relationship

Edmund Weil looks at some ways in which brands and bars can work together to help each other make the most of their investments.

Thoughts

Behind the stick but not the wheel

Jake O'Brien Murphy is facing his return to work with a mixture of trepidation and excitement 

Thoughts

The reopening and recovery of England's bar industry

It’s been six long months since we last saw bars open indoors in England. Hamish Smith looks back – and forward.

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If the goalposts move, create more goalposts

Diversifying your business away from your bar could be the thing that saves it, says Daniel Crowther of Hedonist in Leeds (and many other related businesses).

Thoughts

Positives from the pandemic

James O'Hara, director of Public, Picture House Social, The Great Gatsby and Ambulo in Sheffield, is aghast as anyone to find positives have emerged from the pandemic.

Thoughts

Navigating a night out

Customers are going to be out of practice when they take their first steps back into hospitality, says guest writer Bradley Gough, who offers some tips on how they might navigate their nights out.

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An expert for a day

Jake O'Brien Murphy muses over his latest role as an expert spirits taster. 

Thoughts

The return of the Christmas Drinker

Get ready, says Danny Murphy of Berry & Rye Group, the 2021 customer is excited, rusty and coming your way.

Thoughts

Why music makes the bar experience

Photo: Jo Malik at Uno Mas / Credit Kat Whyte. 

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Bar culture: the cost of free drinks

Working in bars is fast, exciting and at times toxic, but in lockdown the entire industry took a breath. It’s time for a new path, reflects Sly Augustin

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When lockdown ends and bars reopen, will you be ready?

It's time to re-focus and get prepared - lockdown won't last forever, says Danny Murphy of Berry & Rye Group in Liverpool.

Thoughts

Monica Berg: Diary of a bartender turned shopkeeper

A year ago, it would have been unimaginable that Tayēr + Elementary would become an off-licence. Monica Berg diarises her temporary change of professions.

Thoughts

How hospitality can save the high street

With retail moving online, the high street of the future can be a vibrant centre of hospitality and culture, says nightlife entrepreneur Bradley Gough.

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I'm writing a CV - what the hell do I say?

Jake O'Brien Murphy is a professional bartender, but his skills don't easily translate to a CV. He writes a column for CLASS about it instead

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End of service: losing my job to Covid-19

Redundancy has become the fate of far too many talented bartenders. Jake O’Brien Murphy opens up

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Will hospitality talent stay or go?

Under these conditions talent will leave hospitality – Brexit will make them even harder to replace, says Edmund Weil

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Why for one month of a Covid-19-hit 2020 things were different

If only for one month, Moncia Berg felt the joy of hospitality again. She's hoping for more Septembers in 2021

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More pivots than a ballerina: how my bars are surviving Covid

Pivoting has been the only means of survival for many bar operators. Iain McPherson of Edinburgh’s Panda & Sons, Nauticus and Hoot the Redeemer has become a master contortionist