Greta Garr: Beyond the Bar (Employee Spotlight)

She’s polite as she is kind — with a detail to service that makes a world of difference. Her smile as she greets you is a sure-fire way to brighten your day. If you’ve been in Missoula for awhile, there’s a good chance you’ve seen her around. People who do their job as well as she does are bound to get recognized.

Greta Garr, who’s currently one of the Bar Managers at the Top Hat, has a rich history with the longstanding establishment. Her parents both worked and met at the Top Hat in the 80s before her father, Steve Garr, eventually purchased the business with his brothers in 1987. Steve did a great deal to help turn the Top Hat around to make it a Missoula staple and was known for his tireless work ethic. After owning the Hat for more than 20 years, he sadly passed away in 2009.

Greta carried on her fathers legacy with her siblings until Top Hat ownership changed in 2013. Looking for change, Greta moved away to Portland, OR.

Luckily for us, as fate would have it, Greta has returned! We couldn’t be happier, so we caught up with her and learned a bit more!

When/why did you move back? Why did you want to work at the Top Hat again?

I moved back to Missoula about six months ago with my sweetheart Dave. He had a job opportunity doing what he loves, and I had recently finished at East West College. Even before I moved away from Missoula, I knew I would someday return. The timing felt right and we went for it. It’s been amazing to return to the Top Hat, which I will forever hold near and dear to my heart. Truth be told, it was the last thing I was expecting to happen! But I’m so happy to be back and supporting the live music community in my hometown.

What’s the best part about being a bartender?

Bartending is not for everybody, but if you enjoy it like I do, it can be the best job in the world. I really enjoy hearing great stories and meeting so many interesting people all the time. We are especially lucky to work here because we get to see live music, and support others in having amazing live music experiences.

What’s your favorite drink?

 I really love classic whiskey cocktails, such as a Sazerac, Old Fashioned, or a scratch made whiskey sour.

What’s the hardest drink to make?

 Spanish coffees are notoriously hard to make. And no, we don’t currently offer them at any of our venues. 

What’s your favorite thing to do out side of work?

Explore nature and sleep under the stars.

What was the best concert you’ve been to?

Sharon Jones on 11-11-11 at the Wilma was the most memorable and best concert I’ve ever been to.

Who are you listening to most right now?

David Bowie, Molly Burch, Greta Van Fleet, Khruangbin, Angel Olsen, Mac Miller, and Michael Nau.

What is your favorite movie and book?

My favorite movie is Stranger than Paradise, and my favorite book is Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey.

What’s your favorite meal at the Top Hat?

Baby Kale and quinoa Salad.

What’s your favorite color?


If you could travel anywhere for a week, where would it be and why?

Greece – a remarkable history, kind hearted people, amazing food, and fascinating beaches!

People would be surprised if they knew:

I don’t know how to whistle.

If you could have a superpower what would it be?

I’d love to be able to levitate objects.

Do you have pets?

 Yes, I have a sweet as can be pound puppy and an extraordinarily funny manx cat.

What’s something that interests you that most people haven’t heard of?

 Relief printmaking and Thai Massage.

Stop by the Top Hat Happy Hour from 3-6pm, Monday – Saturday for a discounted drink and a chance to see Greta at the helm! Full menu here.