Gallery: Ask A Bartender: Great Holiday Party Stories

Surprise...
Surprise...
"I worked a pasta station at a New Year’s Eve party a long time ago at a now-closed West Loop restaurant; the host had, unbeknownst to us, hired a couple of strippers who at the stroke of midnight put on one of the most memorable ball-dropping shows I've ever witnessed." —Mike Ryan (Sable)
Happy Holidays
Happy Holidays
"We had a full-restaurant buyout once where they also bought out two restaurants across the street and closed off the street for this company party. It was a company that had gone from 25 to 200 employees in one year—they showered their employees with an amazing time, the most extravagant White Elephant exchange I've ever seen, and a concert in the street after dinner." — Lauren Lathrop Williams (Jsix Restaurant)
Macy's Parade
Macy's Parade
"This past Thanksgiving, I worked a private party at A Voce Columbus, which was basically a front-row live viewing of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. There was a brunch buffet set out on the bar that was an outstanding spread from Chef, and I was mixing up specialty cocktails all day. The balloons were right out the window over Columbus Circle." — Anthony Adriani (A Voce)
Ah, Great-Uncle John
Ah, Great-Uncle John
"The most memorable holiday party was actually my fist bartending gig ever. I was about 8 years old at my Grandmom's house for the Family Christmas Party, serving my Great-Uncle John Wild Turkey all night. Will never forget it—nothing has really topped it since!" — Emily Tracy (Leroy's Kitchen + Lounge)
It's Not Us, It's the License
It's Not Us, It's the License
"One New Year's Eve, I was managing a joint and a party that was being hosted by a few Bruins started getting out of hand—a woman decided that she wanted to dance topless (well, bra on) on the Captain's Table. Trying to come up with a way to delicately explain that this was unacceptable (after all, who wants to tell a hockey player that his lady friend is being inappropriate), I came up with a solution. I walked to the table, tapped him on the shoulder and quietly stated that we didn't have that type of entertainment license." — Elizabeth Powell
'Wild Turkey' night
'Wild Turkey' night
"The best holiday party I ever worked was back in Lafayette, IN. We always had 'Wild Turkey' night before Thanksgiving, and EVERYONE would be out for our Christmas party." — Nate Howell (Cusp Dining & Drinks)
Presents!
Presents!
"Just recently, we put up stockings at Saltbox and some ladies gave us special candy from their trip to Europe and a postcard from San Francisco where they were visiting from. It's amazing and an honor to be a part of the special moments in everyone's lives." — Pedro Melgar Flores (Saltbox)
Industry Party
Industry Party
"On New Year’s Eve a few years ago, we offered Champagne and onion soup gratinee after midnight. The bar was filled with industry people who all knew each other and it felt like a family. It was great." — Paul Ziminski (Benoit)