Mixologist: job description, salary, training, and latest mission offers
Mixologists are skilled at making and mixing cocktails and other drinks and are often integral members of the bar staff. Here is our Mixologist job description, including salary ranges, training, and the latest mission offers from Brigad.
Mixologists are more specialised bar staff who’ve been trained to create an interesting and enjoyable range of cocktails and other drinks to the customer’s tastes. Mixologists can and will pour other types of drinks, including non alcoholic cocktails, wines, spirits and mixers, beers, ciders, and soft drinks, and perform other bar staff duties whilst always being on-hand to use their mixology skills for creating stunning cocktails.
What is a Mixologist ?
A Mixologist is different from a regular bar staff member because he or she is trained in mixing a wide range of cocktails. A key skill in mixology is the ability to consistently create interesting and enjoyable cocktails. In this role, a Mixologist does more than simply mix drinks.
Mixology is an art that dates back to the golden age of cocktails. It involves more than just following pre-made cocktail recipes. A Mixologist has the knowledge to modify drinks according to a customer's preference and can even create cocktails that aren’t listed on the menu.
There's a distinct art to mixing cocktails, and a Mixologist is a specialized bartender with the skills needed to create stunning cocktails. A professional Mixologist might have studied recipes from the golden age of cocktails, or he or she might experiment with modern molecular mixology techniques to innovate in cocktail preparation.
What does a Mixologist do ?
Mixologists make cocktails working behind bars in restaurants, hotels, bars, and nightclubs. Mixologists will also work in exclusive hotels and resorts, on cruise ships, superyachts, in ski resorts, and other luxury establishments.
Mixologists also pour a wide-range of other drinks, including draft pints, wines, champagnes, prosecco, cava, and spirits and mixers. As one of the team behind the bar, Mixologists will also clean and tidy a bar at the end of a shift, count takings and tips, and ensure drinks inventories are always topped up when orders are placed with suppliers.
What qualities define a Mixologist ?
First and foremost, a Mixologist should be a good listener, good at customer service, a people person who can work well with others as part of a team, and skilled at making cocktails and mixing drinks for patrons.
The latest mission offers for mixologists across London
To start receiving mission proposals for short-term and flexible work as a Mixologist, just follow these three easy steps:
- Register as self-employed Mixologist before signing up for Brigad.
- Download the app and sign up in minutes; it's free, and there's no commitment required.
- Create and personalize your profile to start receiving mission proposals.
You're free to decide whether to accept or decline them.
How to find a Mixologist using Brigad app ?
Are you looking to hire a qualified mixologist for your bar, restaurant, event, venue, or hotel food & beverage (F&B) operation ?
Whether it's for a wedding, a special evening, or even to strengthen your bar team, finding a reliable mixologist can sometimes be a tedious task.
To find a qualified Mixologist using the Brigad app, 3 steps are sufficient:
- Create an account on the Brigad app or website (free registration and no commitment)
- Set up your missions in a few clicks specify the required skills, dress code, equipment, duration, payment method, and more.
- Submit your mission and let the algorithm handle the rest!
Once you set up a mission, it's sent to Mixologist with the relevant skills in your area.
When a talent accepts, you'll be notified and can then connect with them directly.
All Mixologists undergo a strict vetting process to ensure the best match.
UK Companies that are hiring Mixologists
Trusted by over 10,000 businesses to reinforce their teams, Brigad is widely used by both large groups and independent businesses in every sector of the hospitality industry.
The platform offers a connection with thousands of highly qualified, self-employed hospitality professionals such as Mixologists.
These Businesses may include:
- Restaurants and hotels
- Pubs and bars
- Music venues
UK Mixologist salary ranges
The salary of Mixologists in the UK varies depending on factors such as experience, location, and the type of establishment. In London and Birmingham, and nationwide chain restaurants and hotels, Mixologists will earn more than in rural areas.
On average, Mixologists can earn anywhere from £21,000 to £27,000, and usually a bit more with tips.
How to become a Mixologist ?
To become a mixologist, it's important to remember that success in this field hinges on a deep passion for mixology and a dedication to ongoing learning and skill enhancement. Here are the key steps to consider:
- Start with Basic Bartending Skills: Begin by working in a bar to gain fundamental bartending skills. This experience is crucial for understanding the basics of alcohol, cocktail making, and bar management.
- Attend a Bartending or Mixology Course: While not mandatory, enrolling in a bartending or mixology course can provide structured learning. These courses cover cocktail techniques, the history of cocktails, and in-depth knowledge of spirits and mixers.
- Gain Knowledge of Spirits and Ingredients: A good mixologist has extensive knowledge of a variety of spirits, liqueurs, wines, beers, and other ingredients used in cocktails. Self-study, attending workshops, and tasting sessions can help in building this knowledge.
- Obtain Necessary Certifications:
- Personal Licence: In the UK, if you intend to sell alcohol or supervise its sale, you'll need a Personal Licence. This involves a training course and passing an exam covering responsible alcohol retailing as per the Licensing Act 2003.
- WSET Qualifications: For more in-depth knowledge, consider certifications from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), which offers internationally recognized qualifications in wines, spirits, and sake.
- Practice and Experiment: Develop your mixology skills by experimenting with different recipes and ingredients. Creativity is key in mixology, so try inventing your own cocktails.
How to become a self-employed Mixologist ?
To become a freelance Mixologist, follow these essential steps:
- Register as a Sole Trader with HMRC: This is a crucial first step, requiring minimal paperwork and enabling legal self-employment.
- Obtain a UTR Number from HMRC: Secure your Unique Taxpayer Reference number, necessary for tax purposes and identification as a sole trader.
- Meet Eligibility Requirements: Ensure you're eligible for self-employment in the UK, especially important for non-EU international students who may face restrictions.
- Manage Your Tax Affairs: Be responsible for submitting an annual self-assessment tax return based on your income and expenses.
- Maintain Accurate Financial Records: Keep detailed records of all your income and expenses for tax purposes.
- Understand Tax Obligations: Familiarize yourself with tax bands and VAT requirements as they apply to self-employed professionals.
As a self-employed Mixologist, you have the opportunity to explore diverse working options. This includes the ability to combine freelance projects with long-term contracts, providing a varied and dynamic career path. You also enjoy significant work flexibility, allowing you to select your work schedule and locations that best align with your personal goals and preferences.
Additionally, it's important to stay informed by regularly consulting official government resources for any updates or new information related to self-employment.
Why choose the position of Mixologist ?
A Mixologist job is a great way to progress in the hospitality industry, especially as the next step up is to become a bar manager. A sideways leap would be to get more training and aim for a front-of-house managerial position. It’s also a useful career leap that can lead to more senior positions such as Food & Beverage Manager.
How to be a good Mixologist ?
Good Mixologists never stop learning, whether that’s new drinks, cocktail trends, and learning what customers want. A good Mixologist can make drinks that aren’t on the menu or customise a drink according to customer preferences.
Being able to come up with new drinks ideas is also a great way to earn promotions and praise from managers.
What are the working conditions for a Mixologist ?
Working conditions for Mixologists vary depending on the establishment and bar opening hours. In most cases, mixologist shifts are afternoons and evenings, often on weekends, especially on Friday and Saturday nights. Shifts can be anywhere from 6 to 12 hours long, and those working at the end of the night will need to clean and close the bar down.
Typical working hours of a Mixologist
Mixologists know that this work comes with long, irregular, and unsociable hours common in the hospitality sector. If you’ve done this work for a number of years, you might be looking for a change of pace, more flexibility, and a better work-life balance (so you’re not always finishing work at midnight or later!).
Brigad can help you achieve that, connecting you with missions that better suit your lifestyle and what you want to earn as a self-employed Mixologist.
What career progression is possible for a Mixologist ?
The career progression for a mixologist can be diverse and exciting, offering various opportunities within the hospitality industry. Here's a typical path:
- Bartender or Bar Staff: Most mixologists start as bartenders or bar staff, learning the basics of drink mixing, bar operation, and customer service.
- Specialized Mixologist: After gaining experience and knowledge in bartending, one can specialize as a mixologist. This role involves a deeper understanding of cocktail making, flavor profiles, and creative drink creation.
- Head Bartender or Bar Manager: With further experience, a mixologist can progress to head bartender or bar manager, overseeing the bar's operations, including staff management, inventory control, and menu development.
- Bar Consultant: Experienced mixologists may become consultants, advising bars and restaurants on menu development, bar layout, staff training, and cocktail trends.
- Brand Ambassador: Many mixologists advance to become brand ambassadors for liquor brands. This role involves promoting the brand, conducting training and tastings, and traveling to different venues and events.
- Business Owner or Entrepreneur: Some mixologists choose to open their own bars or cocktail lounges, allowing for complete creative control and business management.
- Cocktail Author or Blogger: Writing books about cocktails, blogging, or creating online content related to mixology is a path for those who wish to share their knowledge and passion for cocktails with a wider audience.
- Cocktail Competition Participant or Judge: Participating in or judging cocktail competitions can enhance a mixologist's reputation and open up networking opportunities.
- Instructor or Educator: Teaching mixology classes in culinary institutes or offering workshops and private classes is an option for those who enjoy mentoring and educating others.
- Event Specialist: Some mixologists focus on special events, creating custom cocktails for weddings, corporate events, or private parties.
Continual learning, creativity, and staying updated with the latest trends in the beverage industry are key for a mixologist looking to advance their career. Networking and building a reputation for quality and innovation also play a significant role in career progression.
Frequently Asked Questions
What’s the difference between a Mixologist and Bartender ?
The distinction between a Mixologist and a Bartender lies in their level of expertise and focus on crafting cocktails. A Mixologist is a specialist in cocktail creation, often with advanced knowledge of ingredients, flavor combinations, and cocktail presentation. They may work in high-end bars or restaurants, where creativity and custom cocktail design are emphasized.
In contrast, a Bartender typically manages a broader range of bar operations, including serving drinks, customer service, and maintaining the bar area, and may not have the same level of specialization in cocktail crafting as a mixologist.
How to become a master Mixologist ?
Becoming a master mixologist requires a combination of education, practice, and creativity. Start by gaining formal training or attending mixology courses to learn the fundamentals and techniques. Then, dedicate yourself to continuous practice, experiment with ingredients and flavors, and seek mentorship from experienced mixologists to refine your skills and develop a unique style. Staying updated on industry trends, networking, and gaining customer service experience are also key steps in your journey to becoming a master mixologist.