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a person who owns or manages a bar where alcoholic beverages are sold.
a bartender.
Contemporary Examples

You need a drink: a summer-y beverage that the barkeep knowingly slides towards you at your favorite watering hole.
The Hamptons Hot List: Where to Eat, What to Drink, and How to Get Your Beach on This Summer Brandon Presser May 23, 2014

Historical Examples

Casey was the Officers Club barkeep and much-beribboned mixologist.
Next Door, Next World Robert Donald Locke

Come on, barkeep, an’ slip us another round of this here inebriatin’ fluid.
Prairie Flowers James B. Hendryx

The barkeep’s face was pure sunshine when he turned to the aliens again.
Jubilation, U.S.A. G. L. Vandenburg

“Aspirin and ginger ale,” I ordered, and got a knowing grin from the barkeep.
Cue for Quiet Thomas L. Sherred

The barkeep, a pleasant enough fellow, but with none of Art’s innate joviality, rang up the dime.
Cue for Quiet Thomas L. Sherred

The barkeep dropped his hands, paralyzed by her intoxicating nearness.
“And That’s How It Was, Officer” Ralph Sholto

I arrived back in Joe’s Tavern to find the barkeep had been revived and bore none of us any ill-will.
“And That’s How It Was, Officer” Ralph Sholto

But Nick got rid of five drinks while Joe protected his own glass from the barkeep.
The Stowaway Alvin Heiner

“You guys hold on and don’t drink up yet,” growled the barkeep.
Jubilation, U.S.A. G. L. Vandenburg

another name (esp US) for barman

1846, probably short for barkeeper (1712); from bar (n.2) + agent noun of keep (v.).


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