What is a Bar Boy Called?


Have you ever been in a bustling bar and wondered about the guy who seems to be hustling more than anyone else? No, not the bartender, but the other guy. The one who’s filling ice bins, stocking bottles, and making sure everything runs smoothly. What’s he called? Well, let’s dig into this unsung hero of the bar industry!

The Traditional Term: Barack

Ah, the barrack! You’ve probably heard the term, but what exactly does it mean? A barrack is the bartender’s right-hand man (or woman), making sure everything behind the bar runs like a well-oiled machine.

Definition: A barrack typically helps the bartender with tasks like restocking, cleaning, and sometimes even preparing simple drinks.

Historical Origin: The term has roots in the bar industry dating back years, and it’s been an essential role in establishments big and small.

Entry Point: Many bartenders start their careers as barracks, learning the ropes from a more experienced mentor.

So, the next time you see someone hustling behind the bar, remember, they’re not just a “helper”; they’re a barback, the backbone of any good bar.

Other Titles and Roles

The title of ‘barrack’ isn’t the only name for this job. Depending on where you are and what kind of establishment you’re in, you might hear different names.

Other Titles: Sometimes, they’re called ‘runners’ or ‘utility persons.’

Role Differences: These titles can have subtle role variations, depending on the establishment’s needs.

Location Matters: In some parts of the world, the term could even be different, but the hustle is the same!

Bottom line? Whether you call them a barrack, runner, or something else, they’re essential to making sure you get your drink on time!

A Day in the Life of a Barack

Curious about what a day for a barrack looks like? Let me paint a picture for you.

Typical Workday: A barrack’s day is jam-packed, starting with setting up the bar, assisting during the busy hours, and then helping to close down.

Key Skills: Being fast, efficient, and keen-eyed are crucial skills for this role.

Real-life Stories: I’ve heard tales of barracks who’ve saved the day by catching mistakes or even spotting fake IDs.

So, a barrack does a lot more than you might think. They’re like the stagehands in a theater production—essential but often overlooked.

How to Become a Barback

Interested in becoming a barback? It’s a job that requires energy, attentiveness, and a love for the fast-paced world of bars.

Paths: Some start by applying directly, while others might start as a server or in another role.

Qualifications: Generally, no formal education is needed, but a willingness to learn on the job is essential.

Job Tips: Make sure your resume showcases any related experience or qualities that would make you a strong candidate.

Hey, who knows? Today a barrack, tomorrow a world-class bartender!


Job Title               Responsibilities     Skill Required

Barack                                       Stocking, cleaning, prep work   Efficiency, attention to detail

Runner Delivering items, some cleaning                                    Speed, multitasking

Utility Person                             Varied as per need                    Versatility, adaptability

Importance of the Barack Role

Why should we care about the barrack? Well, without them, your night out might not be as smooth as you’d like.

Essential to Operations: They keep things running so that bartenders can focus on serving you.

Behind-the-Scenes: Like the drummer in a band, they’re not at the forefront but still make a significant impact.

Pandemic Changes: Post-pandemic, the role has often expanded to include even more responsibilities like enforcing health and safety protocols.

So, let’s hear it for the barracks—unsung heroes who make our nights out so much better!



And there we have it! Barracks, runners, utility persons—whatever you want to call them—are the backbone of any good bar. They keep things flowing, literally and figuratively. So, the next time you’re out and see someone hustling to keep the bar running smoothly, give ’em a nod of appreciation. They’re working hard so you can play hard!

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