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Bartender or Secret Scientist?

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Is your bartender a secret scientist experimenting with cocktails that foam, smoke and/or explode? Do you think he sneaks in after hours, working on his next concoction?

Here are 6 quick tips to help you determine if your bartender is, in fact, a closeted chemist.

1. Look at the shelves near the bar, do you see rows of bottles with handwritten labels, topped with corks? These are housemade shrubs, tinctures and bitters, much less explosive and far tastier than liquids found in chemistry labs.

2. Look behind the bar, do you see jugs of fruit and/or herbs and spices floating in liquid? For some bartenders, if there is a fruit, herb or spice handy it goes into an infusion, to be used in a cocktail in the future.

3. Examine the ceiling behind the bar, do you see signs of experiments gone awry? We've seen the aftermath, and it can be ugly.

4. Talk to the bartender and ask him/her about their tools of choice. Did you hear anything that you remember from chemistry class: Beakers, droppers, liquid nitrogen, blow torch, dry ice or a Bunsen burner? Many of these items formerly kept in chemistry labs are now at home behind the bar.

5. Did your cocktail have a smoky unveiling? Where there is smoke, there's fire - a bartender/scientist's favorite.

6. Last, but not least, is your bartender wearing goggles and protective gloves? Well, if so, maybe you aren't in a bar after all.

We'd love to hear your bartender/scientist stories; share them in the comments or on Twitter and Facebook.

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