The Bartenders' Sweet Sixteen is a questionnaire comprised of questions asked by Marcel Proust, Bernard Pivot, and James Lipton, with a few curve-balls thrown in by gaz regan
Jigger or Free-Pour?
Jigger! Always jigger. Why wouldn't you use a tool that makes you better at your job?
What's your favorite swear word?
Inspired by my partner Chris, it's always fun to refer to someone as a "hammerhead." It's playful enough that you can say it to someone to their face without offending them too much, but it conveys a specific distaste and lack of respect that, without getting too emotional, I find very poignant.
What's the one thing a guest can say or do at your bar that will really piss you off?
I really dislike it when anyone refers to drinks in some sort of outdated, gendered way. Asking for something "manly," or refusing to drink something that is pink or in a "girly" glass is so ignorant and offensive. I know that it tends to be a reflection of their own moronic biases and fears, but I make sure to let them know that we dont tolerate any sort of sexism in our bars.
What other profession would you like to attempt?
There was a period where I strongly considered culinary school. With how well I've grown accustomed to working in hospitality over the years, I've often wondered how I would have done as a chef.
What profession would you not like to do?
My parents always said that if I didn't go to college, the only job I would be able to get would be to follow elephants at the circus, sweeping up the poop. That's been my gold (brown?) standard for bad jobs ever since.
What is your most distinguishing characteristic?
According to my staff, it's my "...ability to speak faster than most humans brains can think." Also my love for water, bubbly and otherwise. I'm very thirsty, and very serious about my bubbles.
Where would you like to live?
I've fallen in love with both Chicago and San Diego when I've visited, and could definitely see myself living in either. I'd also move to Spain or Italy in a heartbeat!
Dry Shake or Reverse Dry Shake?
Reverse dry shake for most drinks, but if you're aiming for a foamier sour, try this one! Shake ingredients (minus the egg white) hard with ice until freezing cold, then strain from large tin to small tin. Dump the ice out of the large tin. Add egg white, and shake again without ice. Shaking ice and egg white separately makes for the richest foam I've come across!
Who are your favorite fictional heroes and/or heroines?
Tyler Durden, Charlie Kelly & Coach Gordon Bombay.
Who are your real-life heroes and/or heroines (living or dead)?
Mark Messier, Lindsey Johnson & Anthony Bourdain
Who is your favorite painter?
My eight-year-old sister Nina! She is an extraordinary artist and I love watching her raw talent being honed. She will have art featured in museums one day, without any doubt.
Who is your favorite singer or group?
La Dispute and The Matches
What quality do you most admire in a man?
What quality do you most admire in a woman?
If you were reincarnated as some other plant or animal, what would it be?
I'd want to be Thai basil. Or a coconut. I think I could be perfectly happy as a coconut.
If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
"I didn't think you'd be on the list, but here you are. And yes of course, we can import some of your friends from downstairs. Here are some empty barstools and a bottle of Chartreuse - get started and they'll be up soon."