Liquid courage, to some.


In a city filled with bars and eligible singles, I’ve often wondered, as I put on my Saturday-night finest to join the bar lines, if dating and bars really do mix.

It certainly takes a hint of courage and sometimes an ounce or two of the liquid form to approach someone at a bar, but how often those first encounters turn into something more than one simple evening is hard to say. Admittedly, I have had and heard of bar-related pick-ups extending into a relationship or two, but the majority seem to flounder at the bottom of the cocktail glass, or … at times under the sheets early the next morning.

Dushan Zaric, who co-authored You Didn’t Hear It From Us: Two Bartenders Serve Women The Truth About Men, Making An Impression And Getting What You Want, disagrees.

“I know a lot of people who met at bars …. and actually went ahead and got married,” he says.

Bars are, according to this bartender, a perfect place to pick up.

“Alcohol is a kind of conduit,” says Zaric, who now co-owns a hip Manhattan bar called Employees Only. “When people drink they start acting the way they really feel. You can use that knowledge as an ally for you.”

He suggests observing how someone you are attracted to treats strangers, like the service staff, which can be very telling about their overall personality. So if you see that handsome blond guy yelling at the bartender, it’s probably best to move on without a hello, no matter how good his butt looks in those jeans.

Even though it’s easy to become distracted at a bar, Zaric says it’s important to remember what your initial intentions for the evening happened to be.

“Once you walk into a bar, everything is set up in such a way that you feel very comfortable. You have a drink or two and you feel relaxed. At that moment, it’s important to remember why you are out,” he says. “If your intention was to meet someone to have sex, that’s fine, but if your intention is to just be open to (meeting people), just remember that.”

Zaric adds that in order to find the right kind of match you simply have to put yourself out there.

“Bars are great because you get a real sense of somebody (unlike online). A bar is a neutral playground.”

So even if you don’t find what you’re looking for, go ahead and play a little.