Iron Smoke Launches Platform to Tip Your Favorite Bartenders During Covid-19

Feel Good News


Written by Step Out Staff

Published on March 26, 2020
Iron Smoke Distillery

Photo courtesy of Iron Smoke Distillery

Have you heard? Due to Covid-19, we’ve temporarily changed our motto to “Stay In, Buffalo”.  And for the foreseeable future we will be posting content that shares how our community can continue to support local businesses while adhering to guidelines set by the CDC.⁠


‘’ will support bartenders across the world affected by the Coronavirus

Are you wondering how you can help your favorite bartender who is currently out of work due to Covid-19? A WNY distillery has a solution and it involves drinking – at home of course – and learning new recipes. 🙌 Two things we are already doing, so why not get creative and tip your faves in the meantime.

Here’s how it works: Rochester’s Iron Smoke Distillery launched a new website aimed at helping out-of-work bartenders affected by the Coronavirus. will be a portal/host for instructional drink-making recipes and videos uploaded by bartenders and allow site visitors to donate directly to out-of-work bartenders and service industry workers by “tipping” them via the site.


Iron Smoke Distillery created the site in partnership with Managed Services Team as a way to offer support and assistance to people who have lost their livelihood during the difficult times created by the Coronavirus. The restaurant and beverage industry has been disproportionately hit as measures are implemented to reduce the risk and curb the spread of the virus.’s mission is to help supplement lost income, perhaps teach people a new skill, and allow them to continue to enjoy one of life’s best pleasures– a properly made cocktail.

CEO and Founder, Tommy Brunett said “To address the new catchphrase – ‘We’ll all get through this together’ – we as a company wanted to create a united front of friends, families, regular guests and fans of each and everyone of these champions of the service industry to help support them in this time of desperate need for a financial life jacket. This will also be glorious for people who are stuck at home for awhile and need cocktail ideas as well.”


As of the time of publishing this post there are no Buffalo-based bartenders on the site yet, but we hope its only a matter of time. Get @ your favorites and encourage them to get on here so we can tip away and try their best recipies.

Bartenders who are interested in participating can upload recipes and/or videos by making a free account and connect their Venmo or PayPal account to receive donations. All proceeds will go directly to the participating bartenders. Those looking to help can visit to look for drink recipes and videos and “tip their bartender” by donating to their individual page.

For more coronavirus-related stories and guides visit our Covid-19 Content page.

Want to send us a feel good story – big or small – so we can share with WNY? Email us at

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Written by <a href="" target="_self">Step Out Staff</a>

Written by Step Out Staff

A group of Step Out Buffalo team members worked together to create this post from research and writing to editing and imagery. Thanks for reading!
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