Nimble Professional Bartending School

Become Everyone's Favourite Bartender

5 weeks of modern professional bartender training on-location at local Victoria bars where you will learn world-class techniques to wow today's guest

Space is limited. Apply today.


A high-performing bartender is kinda like an Oscar-winning actor

There's more to it than it seems

Why Nimble Bartending School?  

Nimble Bartending School is the most well-rounded, comprehensive bartending program in Canada. Our training takes you through cocktail technique, point-of-sale systems, speed training, guest communication, palate development, menu design, and much, much more.  

You'll learn from industry-leading and award-winning professional bartenders, bar consultants, bar managers, and cocktail event caterers. Your instructors collectively represent every aspect of the art, craft, and business of bartending. You'll learn to maximize profitability both for yourself and for the bars you work behind.

"The greatest accomplishment of a bartender lies in his ability to exactly suit his customer." -- Henry Gordon Johnson  

During The 5 Weeks, You'll Learn...

Pouring technique

There's more to pouring than you might think. From free pouring to cutting a pour, mastering methods can make the difference between an amateur and a professional.


Where exactly do you build the drink? Do you build it in the glass to be served? In a tin? In a julep cup? In a mixing glass? In which order should you build your drinks? Have no fear; we'll cover this, too.

Stirring, shaking, throwing

Learn techniques like cocktail dilution, aeration, and emulsification. We'll teach you to elegantly guide the ice around the glass with a stir, shake the bejeezus out of a drink that needs to be woken up, and aerate a viscous drink with a throw.

Classic cocktail knowledge and preparation

Master the recipes and preparations of the 50 most important and frequently ordered cocktails. You'll leave our program knowing how to make these drinks deliciously and with panache. 

Efficiency of movement and speed

A great bartender wastes few movements, works at lightening speed, and can make multiple drinks at once. We'll teach you how through simulated speed trials.

On-the-fly cocktail creation

With the renaissance of cocktails now in full-swing, guests expect custom drinks. Our program teaches you how to easily create unique drinks that customers will love.

Garnish game

Gone are the simple days of lonely wedges and twists. Welcome to the world of swaths, flowers, birds, wheels, planes, and more. Our program will teach you to creatively garnish your drinks and impress your guests. 

Point-of-sale systems

You'll work with the best POS systems in the business. When you step into your role as a bartender, you will be a few steps ahead.

Spirit knowledge

We'll turn you into a spirited pro. You'll be able to school your friends on everything from whisk(e)y to mezcal.

Wine knowledge

You'll walk away with a fundamental understanding of important wine varietals and how to pair them with a variety of foods and dishes.

Beer knowledge

Learn which beers are top vs. bottom-fermented, why that's important, and other key hoppy insights.

Palate development

We'll help you develop and refine your palate through blind tastings.

Menu engineering

Learn how to put together wine, beer, and cocktail menus that stand out and drive more sales.

Effective guest communication and assertiveness

By knowing how to communicate proactively and effectively with guests, you can confidently manage any situation. We'll teach you how.

Responsible alcohol service

We'll take you through the ins-and-outs of BC liquor laws. You'll be able to complete BC's serving-it-right certification.

Functional flair

Dazzle your guests with flips and tricks that enhance experience without wasting time.

Maximizing profitability

We'll get you thinking not just like a bartender, but also like an entrepreneur. You will learn how to add more value to the establishments you work at so that you will be a sought-after team member who can demand a higher wage.

Bitters and tinctures

Commonly known as cocktail seasoning, bitters and tinctures are an integral part of cocktails. We'll show you how to use these effectively in your drinks and even how to make your own.


  "The time I spent with Nimble Bar Co, both as their customer and eventually as their coworker, was an invaluable asset to me as a young bartender. Their methodology regarding how to move and work quickly and efficiently in a high volume cocktail bar is unparalleled, as is their encyclopaedic knowledge of spirits and cocktail history. They were extraordinarily creative when it comes to cocktail creation, a trait that they pass on to anyone they work with, and most importantly they are patient teachers who will take the time to make sure that you actually learn the skills you need to be a great bartender."

Avi Kunen, Professional Bartender


"These guys get it."

Chris Thompson, Forty Creek Whisky

Here's what's included in the Nimble Certified Bartender program 


30 Hours of instructor-led training

Our instructors are award-winning professional bartenders, bar consultants, and bar managers. We'll guide you on your journey as you become a bar wizard.

Nimble Signature Barkit

We've spent years testing hundreds of combinations of different bar tools, and we've gathered the best in the Nimble Signature Barkit (value -- $160.00)


Nimble Bartending Certification

Recognized by Vancouver Island's best establishments as the premier bartending qualification, the Nimble Bartending Certification will help you stand out from the competition. 

Nimble Bartending Manual

The Nimble Bartending Manual is a culmination of over 40 years of bartending experience and knowledge presented in a fun and easy-to-read way that will expedite your professional development.


Access to Private Group Google Drive

You'll become part of an inner-circle of Vancouver Island's leading professional bartenders. Our private Google Drive includes resources like menu templates, custom cocktail recipes, training manuals, and more.

You Might Be Wondering...

Will you help me find a job?

While we can't guarantee employment, our certification is recognized by Victoria's establishments as the industry-leading bartender training. We'll teach you the best ways to land a role as a bartender in Victoria and beyond.

How much does it cost?

The course costs $1,297.00 + tax.

We also offer the option of paying in three monthly payments of $447.00 per month. Interested in this option? Get in touch.

There are limited bursaries available to students and others with financial need.

Isn't it best to learn these skills 'on-the-job'?

Before we founded the Nimble Bartending School, we'd say 'Yes, you'll learn best on the job.' But our program offers students something no job can: a compilation of almost 40 years of professional experience packed into comprehensive training. Our program will catapult you past those who have 3 – 5 years of experience 'on the job.'

Can bartenders actually make great money?

Yes! Full-time bartenders can reasonably expect to earn $60,000.00 - $80,000.00 per year.

What is the schedule and when does it start?

There are two groups of classes:

Saturdays & Sundays (11 am - 2 pm), July 21st - August 19th, 2018

Mondays & Wednesdays (11 am - 2 pm), September 17th - October 17th, 2018  

Are there any additional fees for supplies?

All supplies are included. There may be some additional out-of-pocket expenses for palate development programs, but they will be minimal (and optional).

Ready to Get Started?

Nimble Bartending School is the most comprehensive bartending program in Canada. We've trained bartenders all across the country teaching them to hone their skills and be more confident We're excited to share all of this with YOU in the Nimble Certified Bartending School.