How to price bar drinks

Written by jeffrey brian airman
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How to price bar drinks
Lower drink prices during slow business hours can attract new customers. (Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Bar drinks should be priced to maintain a steady profit margin and simplified for the staff and customers. There is no set rule when it comes to the exact price of a bar drink. A drink with identical ingredients at another establishment may have a vastly different price. Beverage pricing tiers help create a pattern that is easy to explain and understand.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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  1. 1

    Divide the cost of each bottle by the total number of fluid ounces to figure the price per ounce of each ingredient. For example, a bottle that costs £16 and holds around 709gr. would be 60p per ounce.

  2. 2

    Total the cost for the ingredients in each drink. For example, a drink containing 29.6ml. of liquor at 70 cents an ounce and 28.4gr. of liqour at 60p an ounce would have a total cost of £1.10. Multiply the price per ounce by the number of ounces the serving glass holds to set the cost.

  3. 3

    Multiply the cost by four for a 25 per cent liquor cost or five for a 20 per cent cost margin. Triple the drink cost to maintain a 67 per cent profit over alcohol cost at discount establishments and for temporary happy hour pricing. Multiply the cost by six or seven for high end restaurant and hotel bars.

  4. 4

    Round up the prices to the nearest quarter. Customers and bar staff get slowed down if they have to deal with small change.

  5. 5

    Create groups of liquors, beers and wines that have similar prices to create a two or three pricing tiers. Increase the prices of all the other drinks in each tier to the price of the most expensive drink in the group.

Tips and warnings

  • Temporarily reduce drink prices on individual drinks when costs decrease.

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