The Ideal Bartender School

Tom Bullock. Photos courtesy of Copper Kings.

Inspired by Louisville bartender and cocktail book author Tom Bullock, who published The Ideal Bartender 100 years ago, Copper & Kings owner Joe Heron worked with his team and Louisville’s broad-based hospitality community to develop a 14-week course, offered free of charge, for individuals who face disadvantages in finding secure work. Participants will gain rigorous training in all aspects of the bartending industry, from organization, teamwork, and management skills, to technique, glass service, and cocktail history.

Copper & Kings had been celebrating Louisville native Tom Bullock’s legacy in quiet way for over a year, incorporating recipes into events and selling his book in the gift shop. Although Bullock grew up black and poor, he made a path to success behind the bar. He was the first African American to publish a cocktail book in 1917.

Students at The Ideal Bartender School will benefit from specific instruction from famed distillers, industry professionals and craft brewers. Twenty students will be selected from an uncompromising application process that weighs work ethic, ambition and need for the first course. Find the course syllabus, overview, and applications on the Ideal Bartender website.

Interested parties can also find applications for The Ideal Bartender School at community centers and career centers around Louisville. To increase reach and accessibility, the school accepts applications online, via email, standard mail, or submitted in person.