Creating a balanced cocktail

As much as I love to be humble on mostly everything that I do, I can say what I come close to being what is considered an expert on is creating cocktails. That’s broadly stating the topic, as far as mixology goes. What I have a really good knack for is making well balanced cocktails. As it turns out, my infatuation with numbers (hence the accounting major) and precise measurements (OCD) really goes hand in hand when it comes to making a well balanced cocktail. Besides those two factors, what attracted me to mixology and bartending was the nightlife, opportunity to make more money, comradery, and a new experience in a different work environment. I worked my way up to the position of bartender at Butter Restaurant, starting from being a busboy, then going behind the bar, becoming a barback. Making the switch to the bar was quite enjoyable. I fell in love with the workload (I know that sounds weird) and I began to learn from what I considered to this day to be some of the most knowledgeable colleagues and bartenders in the business. Not too further down the road I made the switch to becoming a bartender in one of the most sought after night life scenes in NYC. Then my journey and passion for curating cocktails began.

From that moment that I became a bartender, I spent the next eleven years progressing and growing in the restaurant/bar industry of NYC. One could say that I’ve “seen it all, done it all” in that sense. This topic resonated with me so much because I was reminded about an idea that one of my favorite authors, Malcolm Gladwell said in his book, Outliers, which stated that to become a true expert on anything you must go by the “10,000 Hour Rule”, which means that you must put 10,000 hours of practice into something to truly be an expert. Even though some people may argue that idea, I find it to have some significance. Throughout these eleven years, I have invested my time in reading multiple books, attending cocktail expos and cocktail classes, creating unique cocktail lists, practicing on my own time at home, researching ingredients that range from fruits to veggies, learning new techniques, learning flavor profiles, and the most important, just plain ol’ hands on learning from my colleagues and other mixologists in the industry. I am a quick learner with mostly everything that I do. I like to combine all aspects of my learning and knowledge into unique creations, sort of how I was “created” into the mixologist that I am today. Above it all, I got to meet, befriend, and network with some really amazing people in NYC throughout my tenure. Most of these people are like family to me and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I will leave you all with some yummy cocktail pictures, please enjoy and thank you for stopping by!

3 thoughts on “Creating a balanced cocktail

  1. Ellie Hubbard (she/her/hers)

    Ok this is truly a post I can get behind. I have always wanted to be a bartender and been amazed watching bartenders making like 5 complex drinks at a time. As a former barista, I can relate to the workload and type of work of a bartender, and I love being a barista so much so swap coffee out with alcohol and I’m there. I have also worked in the restaurant industry since I was 14 so I have always been around a bar and have tried my hand as a bartender at the server job I was working up until recently, and I really loved it! I hope to be a bartender in the coming years so I can support myself in law school. Also, the cocktails in those pictures look so beautiful.

  2. destiny ramos (she/they)

    Hello Ellie and Loren! To start off, those cocktails look amazing. I truly admire anyone in the food service industry, since it’s a lot harder than it looks. Recently, I started working at a bakery/cafe, and I find myself often watching the baristas on my free time. As much as I try to memorize the way they make drinks, I seem to forgot after the third or fourth step. It’s inspiring seeing the progress you’ve both made and how we all started in similar places. In time, I hope to also be able to become a barista then even a bartender since like you’ve mentioned Loren, the workload and experience is rewarding.

  3. Lionel Colon (He/Him)

    Hey Loren,

    The cocktail pictures look amazing and that’s coming from someone who doesn’t drink. I always wanted to learn how to make cocktails and fancy drinks just so I had a cool talent to show off at parties but you went above and beyond. I can tell you put tons of effort and love into your craft and resonate with that. Keep up that drive for your hobby and I’d love to get a crash course in mixology!

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