The anime's rendition of the insightful Bartender manga never quiet fills the big shoes that the manga wears. That is what this review revolves around. Since no other review seems to mention the manga, I will.
The story itself is genuine. The execution of said story teeters off into some unknown character narration that absolutely does not do the manga justice. Instead of making a 3rd person omniscient narrator (all knowing) of the story, each character fills in as narrator and tells the story of the troubled customer like they know it. This really irritates me. In the manga, the narrator tells the story and the characters remain out of it. What it comes down to is, the directors just wanted to give every voice actor enough screen time to make it worth their pay (sarcastic opinion). The story should be told by the troubled customer or narrator, no one else should intervene. By not doing this, it's confusing and simply confusing. A better way of describing the narration is abstract. Enough about that. Another problem I had was the voice of the Bartender. What an awful choice. He sounded like a teenager instead of an adult. He had a great voice but the part was wrong. The story though was great and the explanations and depictions where certain spirits came from where really neat.
The animation was astounding. A little CG was in there, though I am not a fan, it was not to much. Everything was smooth and the art looked just like the mangas. Aside from one of the girls who I couldn't tell who she was.
The sound was easy at the opportune time and set the slow-paced mood of a bar.
One of my gripes, again, revolves around how certain characters intervened where they should not have. Like, around the end of the anime, every character gathers outside of Eden Hall to pitch in on the narration. That never happened. The bartenders were spot on but introduced to early. Each customer had a nice background though. The manga develops each bartender even further and more side characters become important to the point of secondary characters. Like that girl who went to find Sasakura a doctor.
All in All, this anime was only made in honor of some alcoholic beverage's anniversary and will probably never continue. If it does, it's needs to be remade. The anime made too many mistakes but looking past them, I was able to enjoy the enriching knowledge provided by a great bartender. Read the manga from the start whilst enjoying the interesting developments and alcohol exploration.