You can use CostGuard to track and manage your liquor inventory and sales.  This section will address alcoholic beverages such as whiskey, vodka, rums, and liquors such as cordials, brandies, and other items.  Managing the inventory of alcoholic products is very similar to food, with these suggestions to make it easier for you.

How you set-up Liquor in Inventory and Recipes depends on how you track the sales. If you are not exporting a sales mix into CostGuard, then enter each drink as its own recipe.  If you are using one PLU for all liquor drinks, then you will need to use the Customer Choice option, described further below.

Whenever you see the word “Food Cost” mentally substitute “Beverage Cost” or “Pour Cost”. The formulas are the same. Other suggestions include:

Inventory Module

SuperGroup and Groups:  You have several options in this area.  You can create a SuperGroup named Alcohol, and then a group named Liquor.  Another Group option is by type such as gin, whiskey, and rums.  A third option is Well, Call, and Top Shelf.  Which setup you choose depends on how you want to track your usage.  If your storeroom is set-up by liquor types, then use the name (gin, rum, etc) option.  If you are more concerned with tracking usage, use the Well, Call, and Top Shelf Groups.

Unit Tab:  If you buy liquors by the case, then the Purchasing Unit on the Main tab is Case.  If you purchase by the bottle, then the Purchasing Unit is bottle.  For the Unit tab, the Pack Size is the specific bottle size (1 liter, 750 milliliters) and the Pack desc is bottle. 



Ordering Tab:  If you are legally obligated to purchase alcohol from a specific vendor, make sure that vendor is the first listed.  For Shopping Cart, click By Primary Vendor to make sure that it is ordered from the correct vendor.


Other Notes: Click here for information on deposits and returns.

Recipe Module:

Drink Recipes:  Create a recipe for each drink family such as martinis, margaritas, collins, on the rocks.  If you wish, you can copy the recipes to include the different alcohol, to create two recipes: one for gin martini, and one for vodka martini.  You can go further if you wish, and create gin well martini, and gin call martini if you want that level of control.  At any point, when creating, you can also use the Customer Choice technique to create the sales of mix of product. If you are going to import sales information, be sure to create a drink for every PLU in your POS system. See the Sales section below for additional details.

Main Tab:  The Yield and Portion is serving. For the Pricing box, Food Cost % is your Pour Cost %.  Make sure that you have Food Cost as the option for Recipe configuration. For more information on how to set this option, click here

Ingredients Tab:  The Qty and Unit are your fluid ounces.  


Prep Tab: use this tab if you make drinks ahead of time and need to store them somewhere before they are sold to customers.


One of the main complications with liquor is the number of inventory items multiplied by the drinks families’ means that a bar could have to have thousands of PLU numbers to match every possible drink/liquor combination.  Since most bars have POS setup for well-call-top shelf configuration, use the Customer Choice option to create a menu that matches your sales mix. If your POS setup is very specific, for example “gin – well drinks” and “rum – well drinks” then create the Customer Choice Option to match that set-up. 


If you would like to see how to handle beer, click here. 

If you would like to see how to handle wine, click here.