Sydney Barmaids’ Beer Challenge


AGILE BEER – PULLER, Windsor (Melbourne) barman, Cyril O’Brien, who can serve 1000 pots an hour. His employer, Mr. A. J. O’Mahony, will give £100 to charity if any other Melbourne hotel-keeper has a faster beer puller.

hotel windsor melbourne c1945

The Hotel Windsor, Melbourne C1946 when barman Cyril O’Brien skillfully pulled the beers.

TWO Sydney barmaids — Billie Williams and Gladys Henwood — are not impressed by Melbourne’s champion beer puller, Cyril O’Brien, who can serve 1000 customers in an hour.

Said Miss Williams, who lives in Silver-street, Randwick: “Fetch Mr. O’Brien up here and we’ll have a competition. I can serve a customer every five seconds, and empty an 18-gallon keg in between 28 and 30 minutes.”
Miss Gladys Henwood, of Botany-street, Bondi Junction, also says she can empty an 18-gallon keg in 30 minutes. At times she has glasses, three-deep, extending for four feet, but has had no complaints from customers. Both girls work at the Plaza Hotel, Wynyard.
A “Sun” representative, between 11 am and noon today, saw barmaids in city hotels serve 12 customers at a time. A Melbourne report stated that O’Brien, a barman in the Windsor Hotel, in one minute pulled 23 pots or glasses, took money to the cash register, and served the correct change. He is able to hold firmly seven pots at a time.
An official of the Federated Liquor Trades Union said today: “In Melbourne pots with handles are served. These are easier for the barman to hold than the glasses and schooners in Sydney.”
– The Sun Friday 4 January 1946

Read more about the history of the Plaza Hotel at Wynyard Railway Station, Sydney, at Time Gents:

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Categories: Barmaids, barmen, beer glasses, Melbourne Hotels, NSW hotels, Sydney hotels, Victoria hotels

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1 reply


  1. Plaza Hotel, Sydney had the first fully automated glass washing machine in NSW - TIME GENTS

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