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NCB Author

Robert Plotkin

Contributing Editor

Robert Plotkin

A judge at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, Robert Plotkin recently authored his 16th book, Secrets Revealed of America’s Greatest Cocktails. See his site at

Robert Plotkin Blog
Don't "No Problem" Me   January 3, 2012
By: Robert Plotkin

At the risk of sounding like a surly curmudgeon, I hereby declare war on the phrase, “No problem.” And so should you. This particularly horrid phrase has absolutely no place in on-premise vernacular. So, what’s the problem, you ask?

Robert Plotkin Blog
What’s in a Water?   December 20, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

Water is integral to almost everything we do in the food and beverage business. The importance of water is universal, and yet some establishments have integrated water programs while others fail to see its potential.

White Russian Article
The Dude Abides White Russians   December 20, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

The White Russian is the unpretentious, straightforward combination of vodka, Kahlúa and milk. Born in the early 1970s, the under-appreciated rocks drink has spawned an amazing number of highly successful progeny, and as such, it now represents a substantial branch of American mixology.

Gavel Article
Serve Responsibly or Suffer the Consequences   December 19, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

You know you're going to have a bad day if you’re in court, and you see Randy Durnal take the stand for the plaintiff. In the area of dram shop litigation, he is a tenacious investigator and a highly persuasive witness. If staying on the right side of the law is important to you, it’s best to...more >>

Brian Miller Article
Brian Miller, The Zen Master of Tiki   December 19, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

One of the celebrities of the New York bartending scene is Brian Miller, a seasoned veteran who has served with distinction at two of Manhattan’s most prestigious cocktail haunts — Pegu Club and Death & Company. However, Miller’s credentials go deeper than just where he’s worked. It’s...more >>

Criticize Blog
10 Ways to Criticize Staff Effectively   December 6, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

Criticism needn’t leave the recipient permanently scarred and you emotionally disturbed. Put down your scalpel and cat-o’-nine tails, here’s our top 10 list of ways to criticize your staff effectively, and hopefully, more humanely.

Stop Article
Unbalanced: Biggest Cocktail Blunders   December 6, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

Anyone who has attempted to create the next cocktail sensation will appreciate the difficulties involved. The following list of frequently observed cocktail blunders is as much a collective cry for relief as it is a primer for the advancement of the craft:

Recycle Article
Reducing Your Bar's Carbon Footprint   December 6, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

Turning green is good for your bar's business. Not only will it lower operating costs, it also will clearly demonstrate to staff and clientele that you’re driven by more than just profits.

Flair Article
Start Flipping Those Bottles   December 6, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

Teaching your staff the secrets of flair bartending is like tapping into an unknown reservoir of excitement, grace and dazzling dexterity. Flair bartending is a proven means of wowing guests, building repeat business and driving sales.

Brandy cocktail Article
Celebrating the Sidecar Revival   November 22, 2011
By: Robert Plotkin

From Main Street to Wall Street, people are rediscovering the unsurpassed character of brandy. Not surprisingly, this renaissance was not born with a snifter in its hand. Instead, the birth of this mega-trend came about from people exploring brandy’s creative range and limitless mixability.

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