March 21, 2024

A mal-line influence: Why some all-in-one jiggers just don't measure up

A mal-line influence: why some all-in-one jiggers just don't measure up

We understand the bar managers dilemma: seeking practical ways to reduce costs in order to increase profits. Sometimes, that means streamlining certain aspects of your business.

But when it comes to stocking and streamlining your bar, there are just a few essential tools you can't live without—a jigger is one of those tools. Yet with so many different jiggers on the market, it can be tough to decide which one keep... which one is right for you.

Rationalising clutter on the bar top seems like a great start, replacing multiple products with just one. In theory, this seems logical yet sometimes great intentions don’t always translate into the savings desired.

One example is the ‘all-in-one’, multi-lined jigger—a measuring tool designed to replace multiple jiggers with just one.

If your bar is in this boat, here are some challenges you may not be aware of or are already struggling with:

1. Night vision

Let's face it, a big part of the bar experience is the atmosphere... the ambiance, the vibes. But that alluringly dim lighting that sets the mood can also be a real pain for bartenders trying to accurately measure ingredients. And jiggers often become the enemy in this situation, here's why:

  • Over time, as the markings on a jigger wear away, it becomes even harder to see in low light.
  • Standard jigger markings often denote small amounts like half ounces which can be challenging to read under dim light.
  • Many jiggers are made of metal which can reflect the ambient light, creating glare and further obscuring the markings.
Bartender pouring liquor in a jigger under dim lighting

2. The parallax error

For a bit of context, do you remember learning about the parallax rule at school? If you have skipped that day’s class, our blog on Shattering the Glass Myth is here to give you a rundown.

Going back to the bar... even with the best lighting and a new, high-contrast jigger, there can still be an issue lurking for accurate measurements: the parallax error. This happens when you look at an object from different angles—the closer the object is to your eye, the larger the parallax error.

Parallax Rule Creating an Unintentional Over-Pour | Überbartools™

In the world of jiggers, this means that the way you hold the jigger in relation to your eye can affect what measurement line you perceive to be filled. Here's how it can happen:

  • As you're holding a jigger to fill to the 1-ounce line, you might line it up perfectly with your eye. But as you tilt the jigger to pour, the angle between your eye and the markings changes. That 1-ounce line you thought was lined up might actually be a touch higher or lower, depending on the jigger's design and how far you tilt it.
  • Short Sighted? Far Sighted? Your vision also plays a role. People with nearsightedness might need to hold the jigger closer to see the markings clearly, which can alter the perspective and lead to misreading the fill line.

So, depending on where you hold a jigger will produce different readings relative to the user’s line of sight, creating an unintentional over-pour.

3. Overpour and liquor waste

Here's another potential pitfall to consider, especially with larger jiggers: the temptation to overpour. The greater the volume capacity of a jigger, the easier it is to over-shoot a level line as the extra space is there, unused!

While the larger jigger might seem more efficient, here's how it can lead to overpouring:

  • Bartenders accustomed to using smaller jiggers might subconsciously overfill the larger one, assuming the "correct" level feels lower due to the increased volume.
  • A larger measuring vessel can also create the illusion that less liquid is present, especially with parallax in play. Bartenders might fill the jigger a bit more to compensate for the perceived emptiness.
  • In a normal, fast-paced bar, a larger jigger can seem like a shortcut, allowing bartenders to measure a double shot in one go. But the increased volume makes precise measurement even more critical, and haste can lead to waste.
Bartender pouring liquor in a jigger

Liquor waste is a trap most bars experience according to inventory liquor experts, Barmetrix. Their bar audits show bars regularly lose 10-15% of every served shot of alcohol. Using large or ‘all-in-one’ multi-lined jiggers might be one cause of the losses bars suffer.

A simple fix: multi-volume jiggers

We've explored the challenges bartenders face with jiggers in dimly lit bars, inaccurate markings due to lighting and parallax effect, and the potential for overpouring with large-capacity jiggers. So, what's the jigger in shining armor for our bartenders and bars?

Uberbartools™ as innovators in bar tool design overcame inaccuracy and over pouring issues in hard-to-read, large and multi-lined jiggers by looking at the problem differently. Creating three solutions: the ProBarJig™ProJig™ and ProBarBone™ jiggers. These jiggers feature the trilobal design and rely on separate volume cavities for precise measure and accurate pour.

Here's how this ingenious design addresses the shortcomings of traditional jiggers:

  • Multi-volume jiggers have separate compartments clearly labeled with and easily identifiable of their capacity, eliminating the guessing game with single-volume jiggers of multiple markings. And... no more mistaking a half ounce line for an ounce in low light.
  • Featuring the trilobal design, each compartment has a wider surface area for each measurement, making them easier to see straight on, minimizing the parallax error.
  • Having multiple capacity options readily available encourages bartenders to use the exact amount required for each drink, reducing the risk of overpouring with a single, large-capacity jigger.
Transparent, multi-volume jiggers by Uberbartools for accurate measuring

A clear advantage: transparent multi-volume jiggers

We've sung the praises of multi-volume jiggers for their ability to address measurement mishaps in bars. But there's another design element that elevates their functionality even further: transparency.

Here are the benefits that transparent design offers:

  • The clear construction allows bartenders to see the liquid level rise within the chosen cavity, providing a visual confirmation of the exact measurement.
  • For cocktails with multiple ingredients of varying densities, transparency is key as bartenders can watch as each layer is poured.
  • Tiny air bubbles can sometimes get trapped in jiggers, throwing off measurements. With a transparent jigger, these air bubbles are easily detectable, allowing bartenders to eliminate them for the most accurate measurement possible.
  • These transparent jiggers are made from durable polycarbonate, making them lightweight, shatter-resistant, and dishwasher safe—ideal for high-volume bars.

To wrap up... no more squinting in the dark, second-guessing measurements, or accidentally overpouring precious liquor. The power of transparent, multi-volume jiggers speak volumes!

So, when you’re thinking about how to be more cost-effective sometimes the low-cost quick fix isn’t the right answer. Sometimes the upfront investment increases profit in the long run—no need to read between the lines here!