Friday, 21 October 2011

The Professional Bartender (in the words of Fernando Campoamor)

Arguably the modern bartender's holy grail, the following passage is taken from a book that very few have encountered in the physical sense. The book, by Cuban writer Héctor Zumbado, first came to my attention a few years back due to this exact passage and since then I've spent considerable time in the search for a copy. As it stands I've had no such luck.

This was until recently when a good friend (whose name I'm sparing as they'd be bombarded by pleas from bartenders and collectors) has promised that they will try and obtain a copy of this book for me, should this happen I will be eternally grateful as my search has proven both fruitless and frustrating. The latter due to the fact I originally believed the book was written by the author who first penned this definition of the perfect bartender, when in fact he was one of Héctor's influences and Héctor included it in his book. Funny thinking about it now, not so much at the time.

If there is a better definition of the professional bartender I've yet to read it.

"Diplomatic, polyglot, like skilled ambassadors... discreet and reserved... They have a good feel for psychology, and a deep understanding of human nature. They are father-confessors, competent advisors on a multitude of complex and delicate issues. They are stoic, capable of enduring with unlimited comprehension and courtesy, all the incoherence of the mad world that sometimes condenses in a bar.

They have the elegance of a symphony conductor, the precision and calm of a surgeon ready to operate. They are the chemists of today, the botanists of the eighteenth century, and the alchemists of the middle ages, capable of willing the creation of cool, shining gold.

They are experts in the topics of sport and international politics, but they never give into passionate discourse. They are philosophers, and when need be, telepaths… and to top it off; they need the memory of an elephant."

- Fernando Campoamor

As featured in El Sexto Sentido Del Barman (The Barman's Sixth Sense) by Héctor Zumbado Argueta.

You'll notice a lack of imagery in this posting as I've no image of the book, Héctor or Fernando to share so I'll leave you with a fitting video featuring 'Papa' Fabio Delgado who sadly passed away in 2004 but whose legacy lives on, not just in his home country but around the World;

Let's raise a Palmetto (a.k.a Cuban Manhattan) in honour of Fabio, Héctor and Fernando;

45ml Havana Club 7 year old
15ml Sweet Vermouth
3 Dashes Dr. Adam Elmegirab's Aphrodite Bitters

Method: Add all ingredients to mixing glass, fill with cubed ice and stir for 15-20 seconds. Julep strain.
Glass: Frozen cocktail glass
Garnish: Cocktail cherry
Ice: N/A



Adam Elmegirab
Bar Consultant / Compounder
Evo-lution / Dr. Adam Elmegirab's Bitters

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Facebook: Adam Elmegirab / Evo-lution Bar Consultancy / Dr. Adam Elmegirab's Bitters
Twitter: @AdamsBitters

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