The 10 bottles of liquor that bartenders hate the most
Matthew Rangel sure knows how to piss off a TikTok comments section. Granted, it’s not too hard to infuriate TikTok users over trivial questions, but Rangel hits many viewers where it hurts the most: their favorite bottle of booze.
Rangel, an actor and bartender from Wisconsin, has a series on his TikTok account @therealmattyr where he reveals the liquor bottles that annoy him as a bartender. The videos have gone super viral (two of which have garnered 3.6 and 6.3 million views respectively) and, understandably, are garnering heated talk in the comment sections.
If you spend time on TikTok, you know that service industry content is popular on the video-sharing app. When the pandemic hit, bartenders, whose industry had come to a standstill, turned to TikTok to shake and share virtual cocktails. In addition to passing on recipes, bartenders, servers and other service industry workers on TikTok have been posting short comedy skits about the job, telling shocking stories about asshole customers and even leaking industry secrets.
Like other creators on the platform, Rangel’s experience as a bartender gave him the idea for his now-viral series.
“The bottle thing just came out of me using bottles for six or seven years as a bartender,” he tells InsideHook, adding that a beloved vodka bottle, and its boring paper neck, in particular, were his front door.
“The biggest thing for me was the Tito bottle and the wrapper around it because everyone hates it. Everyone hates it,” he says. along with his opinions on the bottle, he notes that taking his anti-Tito shot helped boost engagement.(The video now has 6.3 million views, 436,000 likes and nearly 8,000 comments.)
“There’s a lot of Tito fans or Rumple Minze fans who will jump into the comments and say, ‘Hey, don’t bullshit about my favorite booze.’ You know? Wisconsin has a famous beer, Spotted Cow. I talk bullshit about Spotted Cow all the time, not because it’s like bad beer, but because it’s kinda controversial to say as a Wisconsinite. So anything to stir the pot, I guess. I knew I could stir the pot with opinions, positive or somewhat negative, with the bottles. And it flowed from there.
But Rangel isn’t just spouting outlandish opinions to garner opinions. Bartenders have been complaining about the same liquor bottles on social media platforms for at least five years per proof of this Reddit thread in r/bartenders which discusses Tito’s hated paper ring (and probably for decades IRL ).
So we asked Rangel to share the top ten bottles of liquor he despises the most as a bartender, as well as what makes them so troublesome (in no particular order):
“I would say a lot of people have issues with Patrón. The wrapper, the cap, the wrapper on it. And you must have a special spout that fits this bottle especially. I think they sell them for seven to ten dollars a pop from their dispenser, which I think is crazy.
Yeah I understand. You want to have a special bottle, but then you have to have a special spout on top of that. Honestly, most bottles are universal with pour spouts. So this kind of upsets me. “
“So with the paper collar, I think Titos is giving a percentage to dog shelters and so on. So they use it as a necklace. But I mean, it wastes so much paper. I just think you can stick a sticker on the side of the bottle if you want it to stay that way. I think the collar is useless.
“Maker’s Mark Wax is super boring. It’s not super problematic, but when you have the wax there and then you take the cap off, it’s a tiny little cap. Then you have a thick amount of wax on it and it’s never consistent. Plus, the Maker’s Mark’s long neck and chunky square bottle make it really weird and hard to hold and pour.
“Goldschläger is a bit like Maker’s with the long neck, but it’s a round bottle. You can’t put that in your speedwell, and nobody’s going to put that on a back bar. You put it inside a cooler to cool it down, and it takes up three spaces of your cooler space.
Bailey’s, RumChata, Hendrick’s – and all non-transparent bottles
“Any bottle that’s not transparent, like Bailey’s, RumChata, Hendrick’s, it’s just a pain in the ass trying to figure out how much you have left in that bottle. Especially those, they weigh a decent amount. So you can’t really smell it.You would need a scale to weigh it, and some bars do that with non-transparent bottle scales.
“It’s not necessarily the bottle, but the packaging that covers it. It’s so hard to unscrew and unscrew the whole thing. Sometimes everything goes away. Sometimes you can’t cut it at all. Sometimes it takes a knife to get in there, a chainsaw, to cut the wrapper, just to open the Jack Daniel’s.
A lot of people agreed and disagreed with me about the Jack packaging. People were like, “You have to grab it, really a certain way and really use the little, tiny top cap and unscrew it.” And it’s going to break because it’s perforated. But I don’t think it’s punched enough or I’m just weak.
“A bit the same as Patrón. The shape of Crown Royal is terrible. The packaging it comes in – there’s so much. You’ve got the really weird plastic crown-shaped cap on it, and then it’s a tiny little hole to get out of it. So casting spots often get stuck in it, and it’s hard to hold and handle. Plus, if you really want to display it, it takes up two spaces on your shelf.
“The 1800 bottle. Its shape is just… It’s like a triangle. It’s like a big pyramid, really weird and hard to hold and manipulate. I don’t want to hold a bottle with both hands and try to pour it. And the cap, I know in the past the cap had a cool feature where you could pour a dose inside the cap, flip it over and then remove the cap, and it would be an ounce. Now that’s just a really, really, really, really big bottle cap for no reason.
I think there are people who say it has a rim on it and it’s just big enough to put a shot glass on it. So you can put some salt on the cap and re-edge it for hits. But it looks terribly unsanitary and no fun at all to clean up. So I’m calling BS on that one.
“The Galliano bottle is simply crazy. It’s basically a baseball bat up there. Nobody uses it. They only use it for Harvey Wallbangers. Most of my bars don’t even carry it anymore. They’re like, ‘No, we don’t want that.’ It will sit on the shelf for five years. There’s just nowhere to put it. You need to put it on the tippy top path. I would just rather not do Harvey Wallbangers with the Galliano bottle.
And to top it all…
“The last bottle that pisses me off is an empty bottle during a rush – something I have to go replace.”
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