In Atlantic City Weekly's new nightlife feature, we scour the brains of local barkeeps for insider 'tips' and ask them to introduce themselves to our readers.
Sometimes, but it’s more the local celebrities. The ‘locals but giants.’ Now and then we’ll see ballplayers, musicians, show business people. But I’d say 90 percent of our customers are local regulars. They walk in and I know what they’re going to want to drink, how long they’re going to be here, what TV they’re going to want to be in front of, what songs they’re going to play on the jukebox — know what I mean? It’s like a family here, and not just the staff. Everyone who comes here they’re all considered part of the family 24 hours, seven [days]. It’s like the Cheers of Atlantic City.
You’re 26 and have already been bartending eight years — is this what you’d like to be doing the rest of your professional life?
I went to college [Rutgers], but for now this is what I want to be doing. It’s a lot more fun. I never feel like I’m at work, very rarely anyway. I’ve met some cool people here, a lot of good people and close friends. My girlfriend, customers I’ve met who have become my close friends while working the bar. I’m telling you, it’s like family.
Do you ever get asked for a drink that you don’t know how to make?
Yeah, once in a while. If so I’ll ask them what’s in it, and if they don’t know then they probably shouldn’t be drinking it anyway.
What do you do when you get off, or when you have free time to yourself?
Well, this is a 24/7 operation, so a lot of the time I’ll just become the customer and move to the other side of the bar — the fun side of the bar. I like to go down and visit other bartenders in Atlantic City or Margate and hang out. We call it funny money — we all kind of just go around the city and tip each other. A certain group from one bar or restaurant will come here and we’ll make the effort to go and see them. We all try to help each other out. It’s a pretty tight community.
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"Basically every summer there’s a shot that becomes the “shot of the summer” that you end up making all summer long, and I’ll often suggest that."
“We saw this coming and we’re well prepared to grow it for the next 10 or 15 years. This is a whole transition we’re living through.”
“One of my regulars, a local guy I’ve known for about 10 years, came in late at night this past weekend all upset. He said ‘Gia, you wouldn’t believe what just happened to me 10 minutes ago.'"
With the possible exception of New Year’s Eve, themed parties abound in A.C. around Halloween more so than any other time of year. Here are some other suggestions, starting with the casino properties.
Many different places have plenty going on this fall in Cape May County, so if you didn’t make it down during a bustling summer season, now is still a prime time to do so.
Brick House Pub & Grille has live music most Friday nights and a slew of other ongoing enticements throughout the fall.
In keeping with Atlantic City’s multi-cultural heritage, the Chelsea hotel is blending a variety of international influences into an extensive entertainment slate throughout the summer.
What's happening at Atlantic City casino lounges, nightclubs and dance clubs each week
Let’s Get the Parties Started!
Margate’s Music Revival
Pat Martino Plays the Point
Enhanced Social Life at Revel
Don’t Pity The Fool