Do you want to learn the 411 about the secret codes of the bartender world?
Well, loose mixologists spread this confidential — and often crude — information.
In a resurfaced Reddit threada curious guest asked online bartenders what their “bartender code” was, and received a mixed bag of replies.
“A while ago I was told about a ‘bartender code,’ which consisted of various numbers used to represent things at the bar either stealthily or quickly between staff,” the Redditor wrote.
“Things like ’86’ means a product is running low, ‘200’ means a customer is waiting, ’50’ means catching and ‘700’ means an attractive customer,” added she added. “I was wondering if anyone knows more or has a different/more comprehensive list of terms?”
Mixologists quickly chimed in with their own additions, leaking confidential codes including ‘100’ meaning ‘clean up’, ‘200’ meaning a customer needs to be served, and ‘601 and ‘602’, numbers used for toilet breaks.
Others have claimed there are codes to rate guests based solely on their looks, including nasty codes to notify unattractive drinkers.
“Don’t use too many numeric codes in my bar other than 86 and the female ‘area code’ dial,” one revealed. “The first number is the face on a scale of 0 to 9, the second number is either 0 or 1 (would or wouldn’t) and the last number is the body. So 719 is damn good and a 303 looks like your grandfather.”
With this system, 919 means that a customer comes as close to perfection as possible.
Another rough bartender claimed there was a known code to mark a customer with large busts.
“300 – Attractive lady,” they wrote. 300 high – Big old pair of boobies.”
A separate waiter answered and said 900 was the number of a man who had hired company at the bar for the evening.
“900 – the guy is dating a girl he ‘rented’ (he tips because he’s showing off),” they claimed.
Meanwhile, the Reddit thread revealed that bartenders aren’t the only people using confidential codes.
“When I worked at McDonalds, you could only cook 8 burgers at a time. So if an attractive person walked in, the staff did [shout] ‘Cheese on nine,'” wrote one person. “Then you would just see five or six heads popping up from behind the fryer.”
The number jargon and shorthand formulas are rife in the restaurant industry – just look at Hulu’s “The Bear” – with the most well-known phrase being “86” meaning something is out of stock.
On TikTok, bartenders have popularized the infamous “angel shot,” a drink order reserved for people who need rescuing from a potentially dangerous situation.
“An angel shot is a way to ask a bartender, bouncer, manager, or someone in a restaurant for help without saying it outright,” one content creator said in a viral video.
“Because in the end, ensuring your safety is our top priority.”