The secret of a bar charmer by Philip Duff

Salutare !

Citesc acum o carte noua si am dat peste urmatorul articol care mi s-a parut foarte interesant. Atat de interesant incat am obtinut permisiuea sa il republic aici, doar pentru voi. Textul este cel original si pentru a-i pastra integritatea nu il voi traduce. Cei care aveti dificultati, folositi Google Translate ! :)

" Personal charm is the last great taboo of modern bartending. We can all admit to not having read Tom Bullock, to not possessing a bottle of pine liqueur or an antique cobbler shaker, to never having made the pilgrimage to New York’s Milk & Honey. But who wants to admit to not being charming— or not as charming as they could be?
In our people-centred industry, it is like saying you enjoy trampling puppies in hob-nailed boots, only not as socially acceptable. I believe this stems from the belief that charm is some mystical ability that is not, and cannot, be learned, and that only greasy, slimy second-hand-car-dealers, sad lonely men who read Neil Strauss’ 2005 book The Game: Undercover in the Secret Society of Pick-up Artists and scary freaks like Tony Robbins and Derren Brown approach it in any way other than instinctively.

This, of course, is nonsense. You might be lucky to grow up in a household where establishing and maintaining rapport is automatic— large families that eat together at the same time at a single table tend to encourage these skills, hence so many truly charming hospitality professionals are Mediterranean types (Italians, French, Spanish, etc.) But it is totally learnable. It is no different to learning a language, or going to the gym, much more enjoyable and a million times more useful. Nothing happens in this world— nothing at all— without rapport. And rapport as a learnable skill is becoming mainstream; the highest-rated new TV show in America as we go to press is The Mentalist where the main character uses targeted rapport— charm— to solve his cases. Famously, Band Aid & Live Aid, the global charity song and concert that was held in 1985, raised £ 180 million. Three years later, during a lunch with then-French premier Mitterrand, Live Aid organizer Bob Geldof extracted a commitment to an extra 180 million in aid. Over lunch! Have things changed since?

Reporter: “You move in the highest circles [Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, the G8, world leaders]. Do you think that the important decisions that affect us all are taken behind closed doors?”            Bono: “It was quite shocking to discover how important personal chemistry was. Unexpected cooperations would occur because people realized they could laugh with each other. That made a deep impression.” —From an interview with Nieuwe Revu, Amsterdam, February 2009

I have made a study of the elements of charm in the last few years, and it does get a little scary at times. It is so powerful. Appearance, for instance, is a component of charm. Do you know what the strongest correlation is for becoming president of the USA? It isn’t particular policies, or voting records, or political affiliations, or which party or business success. It is height. The tallest guy tends to win. Seventeen presidents since 1896 have been taller than their opponents, while only eight have been shorter-— a 68 percent victory for the beanpoles. That percentage rose when TV became widespread in the late 1950s and appearance became even more important. The tall guys won 10 out of 14 elections from Eisenhower in ’56 up to and including Barack Obama in 2008. That’s a 71 percent success rate. Wow. It holds true in the world of business, too: 58 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs are six feet tall or taller. But only 14 percent of American males are six feet tall or above. You don’t get the corner office just by being tall, but if it’s between you and a sub-six footer, start ordering the new carpet. For those of you— like me— closer to Mini-Me and Shrek than Shaquille O’Neal and George Clooney, there is hope: studies have proven that exogenous beauty (hair style, clothes, makeup) is just as important in being seen as beautiful as endogenous attributes such as height, hair length, physique and having symmetrical facial features.

Charm, rapport, persuasion, or (if you are of a paranoid turn of mind) manipulation is the fundament of management skills, and management is the most highly-paid job in the world. In the context of a bar, being able to get other people— colleagues, guests, even your owner or manager— to “buy in” to your ideas, means you can, unless your ideas are distilled horse crap, make everyone happy. A great experience for your guests, fun work and more tips for you and your colleagues and higher sales and profits for the manager/ owner.

In studying charm, I often feel as if I was wearing blinkers my whole life, and I hope I can help you remove yours. It will not be hard— I mean, an attractive, well-dressed, successful person like yourself should have no trouble with this. The Self-Serving Bias You, me, all of us, are subservient to what is called the self-serving bias. We see ourselves in a positive light and others in a less positive light. When we make a right decision it is because we are attractive, intelligent, successful people. When we make a wrong decision, it was the other guy’s fault, it was the wrong question, there’s a global financial crisis and by the way, the dog ate my homework. For a hilarious explanation of the self-serving bias, rent or download One Night At McCool’s. At one stage, using separate flashbacks, two different characters (played by Matt Dillon and Paul Reiser) are remembering a night at McCool’s bar. In each case, they remember themselves as being cooler, sharper, more decisive and in control, while the other is remembered as less proactive, drunker, and more of a loser. This, then is the self-serving bias. The self-serving bias flourishes because we lack the one thing that only another person can give us: hepatitis. Only joking! I mean perspective, of course. Nobody can see themselves as others see us.

We interact with the world through our senses, which our brains then filter and present to us as experiences. The process of filtering allows all our own prejudices, ignorance, errors in judgment and the self-serving bias full rein, so what appears to us as an “experience” may bear no more relation to the reality than a hamburger does to a Chateaubriand. The opposite is also true: we want to communicate X, but by the time our brains have filtered that desire and expressed it verbally, visually or through touch (aroma too, if what you wanted to communicate was “I just ate a curry”), it may emerge as Y. It doesn’t matter what you want to communicate, it only matters what you do communicate. Whenever we ask other people for “their honest opinion” we so very rarely get it. This is because we tend to ask people who are in some way invested in our lives: in the worlds of the Dragon’s Den investors, “family, friends and fools”. They do not want to hurt our feelings so they soften their words— in effect, they “project” their own self-serving bias. Their words are consequently as much use as a chocolate jockstrap. Do you have someone in your life who doesn’t give a damn about you one way or the other— that is, positively or negatively? That is the person to ask for an honest opinion. No-one else’s matters.

Once you have one honest opinion, go get some more. At a certain point, you will have a trustworthy image of yourself. Do not ignore this. If everyone says you are pleasant enough but very annoying when talking about your own area of expertise, you must accept this as gospel and not fall prey to the self-serving devil on your shoulder whispering “but if they only knew how cool Boker’s bitters really are they’d love them as much as I do!”. You must remember: the goal is to be charming, that is, to make people like you so that they will do what you want. This all sounds very Manchurian Candidate, but it isn’t. Because what you want is for people to have a good time with fine drinks and sparkling conversation, right? What, Then, Is Charm? I would say it is a collection of the following elements:
 • Appearing pleasant and attractive.
 • Relaxing the other person.
 • Building and maintaining rapport using body language, word choice, intonation, pacing and leading.
 • Using common sense and choice architecture to deliver guests a great experience.

I’m writing about this for all bars, and writing in quite general terms. Charm is in no way reserved for white-collar bartenders in up-market  cocktail lounges. The way in which you are charming doesn’t matter, it just has to be appropriate for the situation. One of the most charming bartenders I know is a large, scary-looking man named Zardoc, who is bartender/ bouncer at a rock ‘n’ roll bar in Amsterdam’s red-light district. In Hell’s Angels bars like his, it is (Zardoc tells me) seen as charming and complimentary to say “Nice tits!” to a young lady possessed of an impressive rack, and, indeed, her gentleman companion will also be charmed by your courteous compliment. Similarly, “appearing pleasant and attractive” requires very different clothes and preparation for a night in Excalibur (where Zardoc works) than it does in The Dorchester— a white-jacketed sleeve-gaitered dandy is as unpleasant and unattractive in Excalibur as would be most of Zardoc’s regulars in The Dorchester.

Appearing Pleasant & Attractive As we have seen, this is important. We humans, hairless apes that we are, evolved and along the way it would appear several traits have become genetically hard-wired. Allen and Barbara Pease’s excellent 2004 book Definitive Book of Body Language goes into great detail, for instance:

 • We are programmed to respond positively to baby faces (chubby cheeks, smile, wide eyes) because neglecting babies wasn’t a very good evolutionary strategy, hence we react positively when someone smiles at us, making their cheeks more chubby and their eyes wider.
• We react submissively to tall, healthy, confident, attractive people, recognizing desirable genetic traits that we would like to pass on to our offspring (Although I speak from bitter experience when I say “I’d like to pass on your desirable genetic traits to our offspring” sucks as a pick-up line). We like looking at attractive people, and while we are looking we listen to what they are saying. Tall attractive people are, in addition to being attractive, authoritative: we listen to them and follow their orders. And if they have a clear speaking voice, we are putty in their hands. In the superb 2008 book Outliers: The Story of Success, Malcolm Gladwell details how a good-looking tall man with a deep voice was elected president almost entirely because of his looks. Warren Harding turned out to be just about the worst president ever, but perhaps one of the most presidential-looking.

Eleven Things To Make Yourself More Attractive

1. Shower and (gentlemen) shave or trim your beard each day. Trim your fingernails and nose hair every week and tweeze your eyebrows. Use an odourless deodorant daily. Spritz yourself lightly with perfume or aftershave before your shift begins. Ladies: apply makeup sparingly but expertly.

2. Wear clothes that fit. Most women do, most men do not. Wear clothes that are clean and ironed with no rips or holes or other defacements.

3. Wear clothes that look good on you, and that you feel good wearing. The clothes you may want to wear may not look or feel good on you. But if you do not feel good wearing clothes that look good on you, it is time to get with the program, soldier.
4. Wear clean, polished shoes. Wear them once and then polish them again. Ladies—-and I say this knowing how painful it can be to wear them— wear heels as high as is practical for you, if you can. (I used to play rugby, and sometimes at rugby-club dinners....)

5. Wear your hair in a flattering style, wash and condition it daily. And if you style it with gel or some such, always have some at work so you can touch it up during the evening.

6. Wear attractive accessories that complement your clothes: Watch, rings, belt, tie, pocket square, non-dangling jewellery, etc.

7. Take at least one full minute to look at yourself in a full-length mirror before your shift begins. Make changes accordingly.

8. Look healthy. There is no short cut. You must be healthy. Not hung-over, but well rested, well-fed, with health oozing out of your pores. A light sun-tan helps, too.

9. Be confident. Few things are as attractive as confidence. If you do not feel confident, fake it. You will be surprised at how confidence is self-generating. Much of it will come from being well-dressed in clean clothes that look good on you, well-fed, well-rested, healthy and happy. Simply imagine that you feel happy, secure and confident, and then go get ‘em.

10. Smile. Smile when you meet someone, when you say goodbye, and at every opportunity in between. You might feel like a lobotomy patient, but no-one will ever notice that your smile is not always sincere. They will be too busy enjoying your charming company. And, the more you smile the more positive you will feel towards others.

 11. Take a course in public speaking. Learn how to project, how to pause in your sentences for effect, how to make jokes effectively, and how to get your point across. Learn to speak impressively and authoritatively— and then learn to listen, because charm is as much about letting others talk as it is about talking to them. "

                                                        - va urma -

- text preluat din Mixologist - The Journal Of The European Cocktail - Volume 3 scris de Anistatia Miller & Jared Brown (http://www.mixellany.com)


Slalom printre straini - Ultima parte


Asa cum v-am promis, continuam seria slalom-urilor prin cele mai faimoase baruri din Barcelona. Pregatiti-va ca decolaaaaaam ! :)                                                    

5. Bobby Gin

Adresă: Francisco Giner, 47, 08012 Barcelona, Spania
Telefon: +34 933 68 18 92

Bobby Gin a fost prima oprire in a doua zi a noastra prin safari-ul cocktail-urilor.Deoarece acolo mai tot timpul este nebunie si mai spre seara nu ai nici o sansa sa intri, Francesco a aranjat ca sa ajungem acolo exact cand deschid ei barul, tocmai pentru a putea avea parte de o experienta inedita. Pe care bineinteles ca am primit-o din momentul in care am intrat acolo. Am fost intampinati cu caldura de echipa din acea seara care era formata din: Alberto Pizarro, Jose Carlos Camps, participanti regulati ai concursului World Class si partenera lor de nadejde Sara Torreblanca.

Am fost poftiti imediat la bar, unde am fost serviti prima oara cu un pahar de apa si cu noile meniuri care tocmai au fost puse in uz si in care se regaseau majoritatea retetelor castigatoare din cadrul concursului organizat de catre Diageo care tocmai se terminase. Cat am rasfoit acele meniuri, am fost serviti cu niste tapas ce erau pe baza de dovleac si soia. Simple, gatite pe loc, putin sarate, numai bune pentru a-ti deschide apetitul.

Barul era foarte bine organizat, mi-a placut in mod special ca in partea de sus se gaseau tot felul de casete de lemn in care erau depozitate diferite elemente: de la sticle de bittere pana la condimente, mirodenii, ierburi etc. Display-ul de sticle era impresionat, selectia de ginuri era masiva, nu degeaba se numeste Bobby Gin. Pe langa aceasta mai erau cateva butoaie de stejar pe alocuri in care erau diverse potiuni ce abia asteptau sa fie degustate. Eu mi-am luat Tokio Blue (ketel one vodka, creme de cassis, fructe de padure si suc de lychee) iar Bianca si-a luat Rose Garden Fizz, o combinatie excelenta intre tanqueray no. 10, vin aromatic facut in casa, fresh de grapefruit si limonada de trandafir. Ambele au fost superbe ! Nici nu ma mir, doar vorbim de doi barmani de top...

 Carlos a fost cel care ne-a preparat bauturile si care ne-a facut un mic tur al display-ului impresionat de distilate din spatele sau. Am fost placut surprins sa vad ca aveau si sticle vechi ce erau in voga in perioada prohibitiei. Ce m-a impresionat in mod special la Carlos a fost faptul ca desi engleza lui nu era una dintre cele mai bune, s-a straduit sa ne faca sa ne simtim cat mai bine acolo in compania sa.

Pe cealalta parte, Alberto putin mai dezinvolt, ne-a vorbit despre istoria localului si ne-a prezentat cateva dintre ultimele aparitii pe piata in ceea ce priveste distilatele. Astfel am putut gusta o gramada de brand-uri de gin-uri, cachaca, branduri pe care probabil noi nu o sa le vedem niciodata pe rafturile barurilor noastre. :)

Inainte de plecare, am primit si de la ei o bautura din partea casei, dar de data aceasta era un experiment de al lor de a matura ginul casei (pe care il produc in serie) in butoaie folosite initial de bourbon. A fost foarte interesant sa vad acel mozaic de arome pus la punct. Sincer, mi-a placut ! Bravo baieti !

 Singurul lucru in urma caruia am ramas putin nedumerit, a fost acest panou ce era agatat pe unul din peretii barului. Voi ce ziceti? :)

6. Boca Grande a.k.a Boca Chica

Adresă: Passatge de la Concepció, 12, Barcelona, Spania
Telefon: +34 934 67 51 49

Boca Chica, asa cum este numit de catre barmanii catalani a fost una dintre cele mai mari surprize pe care le-am avut in timpul sejurului nostru in Barcelona. Este un bar cu foarte mult bun gust, decorata in stil modern iar atmosfera de acolo este incredibila. Echipa de bar este condusa de Sergio Padilla Molina, finalist la World Class Reserve Spania. Pe langa faptul ca este atat de priceput in ceea ce face, Sergio, chiar daca nu intelege engleza foarte bine, este o gazda incredibila. Anuntat de Francesco ca s-ar putea sa venim , ne-a asteptat si ne-a intampinat cu un punch foarte delicios, preparat special doar pentru noi. Ceea ce il face pe Sergio sa fie atractia barului este stilul sau de lucru putin neobisnuit. Cand prepara bauturile, unele ingrediente sunt turnate cu o "venencia" (o ustensila folosita pentru turnarea vinului sherry) oferind un spectacol maxim.
Foarte putini barmani stapanesc aceasta tehnica deoarece este dificil de controlat, dar cu multa practica cred ca se poate manui. Singurul barman pe care l-am mai vazut folosind asa ceva este Shingo Gokan de la Angel's Share, New York. De fiecare data cand Sergio facea o turnare in maniera aceasta, parca timpul se oprea pe loc, exact ca in filme. Toti se opreau din ceea ce faceau si il urmareau. Mi-a placut de asemenea coordonarea echipei, pe langa Sergio in spatele barului mai erau doua fete, care pe cat de frumoase erau pe atat de pricepute erau in ale barului. Era o placere sa le privesti dand hard shake. (sa nu ma intelegeti gresit, profesional vorbind :D)                                                                                                                                     Un lucru ce l-am observat in majoritatea barurilor de volum mare era faptul ca toti erau dotati cu casti si asa comunicau intre ei. De la ospatari, barmani, oamenii de la security, toti aveau asa ceva. Mi se pare foarte profesional, deoarece totul era facut cu discretie. Nu mai trebuie sa tipi in gura mare: "Ioane, s-a terminat butoiu'cu bere, adu repede altul" :))
Dupa cum se vede si in imagine, barul era imens, avand o selectie impresionanta de distilate. Meniul era unul cuprinzator, era disponibil in doua variante: spaniola si engleza lucru ce a facut ca totul sa fie foarte usor. Bianca si-a luat un "Spicy Garden" iar eu un "Burlesque". Franceso a vrut ceva mai clasic asa ca si-a luat o varianta de la Negroni. Toate trei au fost foarte bune iar pasiunea lui Sergio s-a vazut in toti pasii de preparare. 

Se spune ca daca vrei sa vezi daca un local este curat, primul lucru pe care trebuie sa il faci este sa mergi la baie. Daca la baie este curat, inseamna ca peste tot este curat. Daca ar fi sa ne luam dupa criteriul acesta, Boca Chica ar fi Nr. 1, indiscutabil. De ce? Pentru ca baia este NEBUNIE !

Spun asta pentru ca dealungul vietii mele, atat in tara cat si in strainatate nu am mai vazut o asemenea baie. Era o baie la comun si practic semana cu un sanctuar. Era dotata cu tot felul de parfumuri, sapunuri, lumari aromate, prosoape de tot felul etc. Era o atmosfera asa "Zen". Partea cea mai tare la aceasta baie era ca era dotata cu o statie de DJ. Da, ati auzit bine, era un DJ in baie care mixa muzica. Inchipuiti-va urmatorul scenariu: esti sus in bar (baia era undeva mai jos) bei ceva, asculti muzica buna dar deodata trebuie sa te duci la baie. Cand te duci la baie, constati ca jos este o petrecere mai mare ca cea de sus. Cat de tare trebuie sa fie asta? Asadar, atunci cand m-am dus eu erau fete, baieti, muzica buna, toata lumea se distra...in baie. Foarte tare ! Nota 10 pentru inventivitate. Big like !

Pe langa bauturile bune, puteti sa si mancati acolo, meniul lor se bazeaza in special pe fructe de mare proaspete, probabil luate de la "Boqueria" (una dintre cele mai faimoase piete de langa Las Ramblas). Daca nu sunteti genul care adoptati muzica data tare, puteti oricand sa va relaxati pe terasa aflata la ultimul eta.

Fie ca vrei mancare buna, fie ca vrei sa savurezi o bautura mixata, fie ca vrei sa te distrezi (in baie), Boca Chica este locul unde trebuie sa mergeti! Daca mergeti in Barcelona, aceasta locatie trebuie sa se numere printre cele pe care le veti pasi pragul.
O sa dati peste niste oameni calzi, primitori, respectuosi si nu in ultimul rand profesionisti. Go 4 it !

7. Boutique Bar (O.H.L.A)

Adresă: Via Laietana 49, 08003 Barcelona, Spania
Telefon: +34 933 41 50 50

Cand stau si ma gandesc la Boutique Bar, primul lucru care imi vine in minte este: World Class. Cu siguranta aici se poate simti din plin experienta celor de acolo in ceea ce inseamna renumitul concurs. Si asta pentru ca in spatele barului nu este nimeni decat Giuseppe Santamaria, unul dintre cei 8 mari finalisti ai Reserve Class by Diageo 2012. Ceea ce pot sa va spun este ca nu a ajuns acolo pe ochi frumosi. Stie foarte bine ceea ce face si din toate barurile pe care le-am parcurs in aceasta "mini expeditie" in Barcelona, aici mi-a placut cel mai mult modul in care erau abordate bauturile. Totul era dus la nivel de arta. De la modul in care erau pastrate paharele, la modul in care erau facute ritualurile de servire pentru diferitele bauturi, acest loc este intesat de lux si profesionalism. Sincer va spun, am fost profund impresionat. O experienta ca aceasta te face sa iti doresti si mai mult sa imbratisezi aceasta meserie, atat de iubita de catre cei din afara.  

Localul in sine nu este nici mare nici mic, este numai potrivit pentru activitatile care se desfasoara acolo. De cum am intrat, Giuseppe ne-a intampinat cu un zambet mare pe fata si ne-a poftit pe scaunele de la bar. Cat ne-a prezentat meniul, ne-a servit cu niste tapas, in cazul acesta o reinterpretare dupa Negroni. A fost delicios! Mai departe ne-a prezentat putin meniul, majoritatea erau bauturi semnaturi proprii ale sale, ale lui Max la Roca si ale lui Giacomo Giannotti, colegul sau din seara aceea, fost participant si el la World Class. Pana ne-am hotarat ne-a servit pe fiecare cu cate un pahar cu apa ce continea petale de trandafir si menta, semn ca hidratarea clientului este foarte importanta si pentru ei.  :)

Eu mi-am luat un Bloomsbury Fizz (tanqueray no. 10, suc lamaie, sirop zahar, albus de ou, vin de porto, busuioc), bautura sa castigatoare de anul trecut care a fost listata in "30 of the Best Cocktails invested since 2000” in Class Magazine de catre Simon Difford si in “101 Best Cocktail 2013” de Gary Regan. A fost extraordinara, daca nu ajungeti pana acolo, macar incercati sa o reproduceti in barul vostru. Bianca a vrut ceva mai light si care in acelasi timp sa reprezinte Barcelona, asa ca Giuseppe i-a preparat Barcelona Kiss, o combinatie excelenta de rom alb, piure de zmeura, suc de lamaie, dark chocolate curacao, lichior maraschino, chambord. O bautura simpla, dar sofisticata cu un super decor, o bucatica de ciocolata cu decorata cu flori uscate. Prietenul nostru Francesco a vrut ceva mai light asa ca a primit o varianta de la Margarita ce continea mezcal, suc proaspat de lime, grand marnier, bitter aromatizant, albus de ou. Toate trei bauturile aratau exact ca din reviste, semn ca maestrul Giuseppe stie ce face. Au fost nemaipomenite !

Cat timp am stat si ne-am savurat bauturile, l-am urmarit indeaproape pe Giuseppe cum prepara alte licori. Sincer, am fi facut asta toata seara. Langa noi la bar au venit si alti clienti, toti in cautare de noi si noi experiente, care au fost pe masura asteptarilor. De ex, daca doreai un Dry Martini, primeai o caseta de lemn special facuta pentru asa ceva in care aveai ginul ales, cantitatea de vermut aleasa, decorul ales. Totul era personalizat pana la ultimul detaliu in functie de cererea clientilor. 

Usor, usor ne-am imprietenit si cu cei din jurul nostru iar acolo era un cuplu care spunea ca de fiecare data cand vin in Barcelona, se cazeaza la acel hotel doar pentru a cobori jos in bar si pentru a primi ceva preparat de Giuseppe. O onoare ca aceasta nu prea intalnesti in fiecare zi. Bravo lui ! 
Inainte sa plecam, ne-a mai pregatit o ultima bautura pentru toti 3 si anume o varianta de la Negroni care era maturata in butoi de stejar. Avand in vedere ca zilele acelea am baut doar variante de la Negroni s-a simtit clar diferenta si impactul lemnului asupra bauturii. A fost un mod fabulos de a incheia vizita la barul sau.

Ca o ultima dorinta din partea sa, Giuseppe ne-a rugat sa facem o poza cu totii pentru a o avea ca amintire si atunci am avut ocazia sa pasesc pret de cateva clipe in spatele barului sau. Totul era extrem de bine organizat, toate ingredientele erau pastrate cum trebuie, la temperaturile si in conditiile potrivite, toate paharele erau la preracit in frigidere speciale, etc. Toate acest mici detalii au facut ca vizita noastra acolo sa se transforme dintr-una banala, intr-una de neuitat ! Multumim Giuseppe ! Multumim Giacomo ! Multumim Ohla ! Ati fost minunati !

Cred ca singura "dezamagire" legata de acest loc a fost faptul ca nu l-am prins si pe Max la Roca. Se pare ca in perioada aceea, era in Italia intr-o binemeritata vacanta. :) Poate data viitoare !

8. Home

Adresă: Passatge Marimon 17,  08021 Barcelona, Spania
Telefon: +34 679685152

Home a fost ultima statie in slalomul nostru prin barurile din Barcelona. A fost exact ceea ce trebuia, dupa o seara nebuna. Acesta nu este mai mult decat barul, ghidului/prietenului nostru, Francesco. Este un bar micut, dar cochet unde poti primi o bautura foarte buna, unde atmosfera este calda si de unde poti pleca cu o experienta placuta. Se vede clar ca in spatele acestui proiect a fost o munca colosala, dar rezultatele nu au incetat sa apara. Intr-un timp foarte scurt (e deschis de aproximativ 2 ani) a ajuns sa fie unul dintre cele mai cautate baruri din Barcelona. Si pe buna dreptate. Dar sa vedem mai intai ce il face atat de special...

Pai in primul rand cred ca primeaza faptul ca este facut de un barman, pentru barmani. Iar toata lumea stie ca  ca acolo unde sunt barmani, exista si o multime dupa ei, "and where is a crowd, there is something to see".  Francesco este unul dintre cei mai pasionati barmani pe care i-am intalnit in ultima vreme si care incearca zi de zi sa fie cat mai bun. Este un tip carismatic, deschis, zambaret gata sa iti ofere oricand o experienta cand tu poate de fapt vrei doar "ceva de baut". Lucreaza in domeniu de aproximativ 5 ani si in acest timp a reusit performanta de a fi campion national "Bols Around the World", campion national si finalist mondial "Disaronno Mixing Star" si campion national si finalist mondial "G-vine."

Ceea ce imi place la el este faptul ca nu lasa acest lucru sa se vada, este o persoana cu capul pe umeri si incearca prin orice mijloace sa devina cat mai bun pentru clientii sai. Tocmai de aceea si-a numit barul "Home", pentru a te putea simti ca acasa.

Barul este foarte bine amenajat, are un display impresionat de distilate iar totul este setat ca la carte. Ce imi place acolo este faptul ca nu au un meniu propriu zis, asa ca daca vrei sa bei ceva, trebuie sa vorbesti cu Francesco si atunci te va indruma el catre o bautura pe care va crede el ca ti se potriveste.

 In seara aceea a fost o petrecere a burlacilor acolo asa ca atmosfera a fost putin mai "wild". Exact dupa ce am ajuns noi, si-a facut aparitia o grupare de tineri care vroiau sa il sarbatoreasca pe unul din prietenii lor pentru marele pas pe care urma sa il fac. Ce mi-a placut acolo ca desi lumea se distra, totul a fost in limita bunului simt. Cum avea acel mini eveniment dar si clienti regulari care incepusera sa vina, barul s-a aglomerat putin dar mi-a placut faptul ca Francesco in ciuda acestui fapt, nu a inceput sa faca detrimente in favoarea calitatii. S-a purtat ca un profesionist adevarat. Dupa ce s-a mai linistit treaba, am fost invitat in spatele barului sa prepar si eu o bautura. La inceput s-au uitat ciudat cei de pe bar la mine, dar dupa ce am preparat bautura, toti au vrut sa o guste. Bautura pe care am preparat-o eu nu a fost alta decat Czech Impostor,(becherovka, sirop iasomie, suc lamaie, suc mere, boker's bitters, albus de ou) una dintre bauturile cele mai bine vandute in localul unde lucrez eu. M-am bucurat foarte mult de faptul ca le-a placut tuturor de acolo, chiar daca nu am avut toata logistica necesara sa il prepar "ca la mine acasa."

Mai tarziu, dupa ce s-au mai linistit treburile pe acolo, Francesco ne-a pregatit pentru fiecare cate o bautura, pentru Bianca a pregatit bautura cu care a castigat concursul de la G-Vine iar pentru mine mi-a pregatit o bautura cu care va concura la Angostura Global Challenge pe viitor. Din pacate, nu pot sa pun nici o poza si nici o reteta. Dar daca mergeti acolo, o sa vi le prepare cu siguranta !!!

Una peste alta, daca va indreptati catre barurile din Barcelona, cu siguranta va trebui sa faceti si o mica oprire la Home. O sa merite !

Cam asta a fost tot, Francesco multumim pentru tot ce ai facut pentru noi  si te asteptam cu mare drag si la noi in Romania !