Ultimate Bartending School

Designed as a one-stop-shop for budding bartenders, the Edmonton-based Ultimate Bartending School has been training staff for all manner of Canadian hospitality roles since opening its doors in August 2004.

Now in its eleventh year, the Ultimate Bartending School (UBS) boasts a roster of instructors who have over twenty-five years’ experience in the trade between them, with the team led by Director and Head Instructor Eric ‘Chico’ Rosende, an industry legend and Master Mixologist and Sommelier who has worked and managed in numerous countries over two decades. UBS aims to deliver the most immersive and comprehensive modern training program in the country, which arms individuals with all the necessary skills and abilities to work anywhere around the world in any number of events and environments, from busy downtown bars to fine dining restaurants and high end hotels.

Operating out of its HQ in the historic Old Strathcona district – the city’s leading entertainment strip – of Edmonton, Alberta, UBS runs a collection of courses which are suitable for all-comers, from keen home bar enthusiasts to absolute beginners. Training is hands-on, one-on-one and intensive yet enjoyable, with the aim of getting you serving drinks professionally and making money as quickly as possible.

Flair bartending is a guaranteed means of pleasing even the toughest crowd and earning more tips as you work, and the school provides full flair training – twenty-two hours of tuition in total – for $165. Meanwhile for $200 students can participate in a selection of three introductory programs: the ‘Enhanced One Day Intro’, ‘Team Building’ or ‘Home Bartending Course’. These are entry-level and designed as a fun way to immerse yourself in the arts of tending bar and drinks service, with practical and theoretical training provided which covers topics such as cocktail prep, alcohol mixology, bar equipment and stocking, fine dining etiquette and more; each of these programs can be delivered at your home or business address as well as the UBS building.

Ultimate Bartending School’s duo of main courses are wide-ranging programs, with its ‘25 Hour Basic Bartender Certification Course’ ($275) offering a full training curriculum including sections on Opening & Closing Procedures, Mixology (Drink Recipes & Preparation), Garnish Preparation, Spirit & Liqueur Knowledge & Service, and even mastering POS (touch screen Point of Sale) systems and brushing up on your résumé preparation skills.

The next step up is the all-encompassing ‘40 Hour Full Commercial Bartender Certification Course’, where for $299 students receive a huge amount of training covering all of the topics on the ‘Basic Bartender Certification Course’ with the added bonus of several workshops intended to provide graduates with yet more polish to their CV and an added edge over other bartenders. These include extreme flair bartending training, fine dining tuition and unlimited mixology practice, along with Wine Knowledge and Service, Beer Knowledge and Service, and the Spirit & Liqueur Seminar – plus Lifetime Job Placement Service (Local & National) and free lifetime refresher courses, meaning students can return to get rid of some rustiness or brush up on contemporary techniques whenever they want. Classes for all courses are regular and flexible, with students able to create their own schedule using the available class times on the company website.

Along with the aforementioned training courses, the Ultimate Bartending School provides Cruise Ship and Overseas Training for bartenders looking to work on or over the seas (this can be standalone or incorporated into another course), while its sponsorship with Bacardi means the school can offer Bacardi managerial field training and apprenticeships. Equipment is also available via its affiliation with performance bartending specialists Flairco, with Professional Bar Kits, Bottle Openers and even training DVDs available for purchase, and UBS also offers home and commercial bartending accessories, consulting and event staffing services via its ‘Bar Source’ sister company.

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