1: When did you fall in love with bartending as a profession?
Weirdly enough, I think back in 2010/2011 or so. I was still in high school but I remember seeing on Netflix or the Food Network some documentary about [what was] at the time, [a] brand new renaissance in craft cocktails coming out of New York. There was something arcane about it, the blending of chemistry and food and beverage that just felt so appealing, even though I wouldn’t find myself behind the bar in any professional context until three or four years later.
2: If you could be drinking Avión Tequila anywhere in the world, where would you be, how would you be drinking it, and with whom?
Honestly? An [agave] plantation and distillery tour with my fiancee feels like a good answer to me. She’s the agave aficionado in the family and we both have a really strong respect for cultural and agricultural processes that give us products like this.
3: What excites you most about your cocktail for Perfect Pour?
The craziness of it! Taking an already well-made tequila, tinkering with it so that it resembles a “Pechuga” style Mezcal, and putting that in the form of a Jell-O shot with a lollipop as a garnish, and having it all be a good cocktail, is so equally entertaining and exciting to me.
4: Tell us your favorite bar joke/pun/response:
More of a food joke/pun than bar joke: When is a chicken like a tiny pickle? When it’s a Cornish Hen/Cornichon!
5: If you could choose a profession second to bartending/hospitality, what would it be?
If I wasn’t in the Food-Beverage-Hospitality field, I would want to be a Historian. (1. Human History can be tracked pretty much entirely through war, salt, or alcohol. (2. When done right, both careers allow one to be a professional storyteller.
6: How would you describe Avión Añejo to a customer who’s never had tequila before?
It’s better than any story your friends told you about when they drank tequila, [and] would [have misled you]. Believe, I promise! Please don’t shoot it with a salt lick and a lime wedge…
7: What’s the strangest food or cocktail experience you’ve ever had? Would you wish it upon anyone else?
Right, this one time when I was a wee, wee lad, my parents decided to get me off of the ‘ole mother’s milk and scooped up this weird paste from some jar, right? [They] called it baby food, like that was supposed to make it somehow better. Completely alien flavor and texture, not altogether good tasting, either. Do not recommend.
8: Bartenders are the best brand ambassadors for their local industry! In your opinion, what makes the cocktail scene in Omaha special?
I think the commitment and camaraderie. That we, as a collective bundle of nerds, can say, that if it’s some type of organic material that’s been fermented and/or distilled, I want to learn more about it, and I want to play with it, and share this creation I’ve made from it with as many people I can.
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