Introducing the Gentleman Jack Culture Shakers New Jersey Class of 2024

Meet the Gentleman Jack “Culture Shakers” Class of 2024: New Jersey edition! The Culture Shakers initiative stands as a beacon of recognition and support for Multicultural bartenders ascending in the realm of mixology, revolutionizing cocktail culture in their respective cities while imprinting their unique legacies upon the bar scene. In 2024, the program maintains its commitment to spotlighting a fresh wave of talent, with a dynamic cohort from New Jersey. These trailblazers, armed with creativity and innovation, challenge conventions and redefine the boundaries of bar culture.

Embodying the essence of Gentleman Jack, a Tennessee whiskey distinguished by its smoothness and approachability, the Culture Shakers epitomize the spirit of craftsmanship and dedication. Like the whiskey’s meticulous process, these bartenders exemplify a commitment to authenticity and excellence, leaving an indelible mark on the industry. Through their passion and determination, they embody the ethos of Gentleman Jack, embracing the role of creators who strive to craft what’s genuine and aspire to leave a lasting legacy.

New Jersey Culture Shakers Class of 2024

Alonso Tejada

What makes your city an exciting place to live and work in hospitality right now?

So many reasons! The city itself draws patrons from all over who work in the hospitality industry, hospitals, offices, the university and so much more. When they go out, they all share one thing in common, they are venturing out for a good experience to enjoy innovative dining and craft cocktails. It is thanks to this amazing local clientele that this industry prevails; it is a rapidly growing city that is expanding in diversity with a distinctive taste.

How does your personality influence your bartending approach, technique and style?

My energy guides my bartending because I love what I do and I bring positive energy.  I always try to make everyone smile and I like to share my jokes. My clients like my personality because I always prepare cocktails based on their specific tastes and preferences. I listen to them, I give my opinion when they want some suggestions and we make it interactive. The best part of bartending is that I truly enjoy my job.

What does being a Culture Shaker mean to you & how can bartenders use their influence to impact positive progress in the industry?

In my case, being a Culture Shaker means so much because I have grown through so many important challenges and I take this honor very seriously. Gentleman Jack is such an incredible product to represent because like us, it has so many different flavors.

Tell us how you used Gentleman Jack in your signature cocktail.

Before crafting the cocktail, I collected opinions from my clients by creating something new with Gentleman Jack. As a cocktail with layers, you can clearly taste Gentleman Jack at the beginning, with a slightly bitter taste of grapefruit; then I combined that with the orange aperitivo, and a good bite of freshness of anise with pink peppercorn.

The Monsieur

  • 2 oz. Gentleman Jack
  • .75 oz. lime juice
  • 1 oz. housemade grapefruit-aperol cordial
    • Grapefruit {Aperol Cordial (Grapefruit juice, sugar, aperol, star anise, Lime Juice, ground pink peppercorn) everything by weight}
  • Serve in a rocks glass over large ice cube with rosemary and pink peppercorn garnish.

Natalie “Nat” Janacek

What makes your city an exciting place to live and work in hospitality right now?

Hoboken has such a rich history when it comes to the “American Dream” for immigrants. For as long as I can remember, Hoboken has always had a robust nightlife scene and it’s a great escape from NYC life. Hoboken has 126 active liquor licenses in a square mile city, so anywhere you turn, you can walk into a bar and restaurant and meet awesome bartenders showcasing their skills

How does your personality influence your bartending approach, technique and style?

I am an extremely particular borderline neurotic over-thinker, which is driving force in making all of my creations outstanding in all its elements. When I’m building a cocktail menu, I chase flavors. I often make my own liqueurs when I can’t find anything on the market that has a particular flavor profile I want. For me, building a cocktail is about introducing a feeling and creating an experience. In my tenure in this industry, I’ve always let my work speak for itself. I’ve been a hard worker in a male-dominated industry where at times my ideas were ignored simply because I was a woman.

What does being a Culture Shaker mean to you & how can bartenders use their influence to impact positive progress in the industry?

For me, being a Culture Shaker is being able to show that there are new ways of being a bartender. It’s about creating an experience in a glass, helping transport a customer to a season, a place, a memory — to captivate them into coming back for another drink.

Tell us how you used Gentleman Jack in your signature cocktail.

Gentleman Jack is ideal because of how it’s double-mellowed. It allows flavors to complement together. Gentleman Jack is delicious on its own, but perfect in a cocktail because it blends together.

My Sweet Gentleman

  • 2 oz. Gentleman Jack
  • .25 oz. Mexican corn elote liqueur
  • .25 oz. housemade dulce de leche syrup
  • .25 oz. guava nectar
  • 3 dashes of black cherry bitters
  • 2 dashes of mexican chocolate bitters
  • Build in a tin with ice, shake then strain over 2×2 ice cube in a rocks glass. Garnish with a dehydrated banana chip.

Pablo “Pabz” Diaz

What makes the City you live and work in an exciting place to be in hospitality right now?

Fair Lawn, New Jersey offers a vibrant hospitality scene with diverse culinary experiences and is in close proximity to bustling cities like Jersey City, Hoboken, and New York City. It also has a growing craft beer and wine industry. And of course, there is my bar where I get to spend a lot of my time creating magic for my guests! It’s an amazing, lively and visually stunning establishment run by some really cool people. We have many events and DJs on the weekend, so the party is always pumping. Although Fair Lawn may not be one of the bigger towns in New Jersey, it’s where all the fun is at in my opinion! Plus, New Jersey is also rich in cultural heritage, has a beautiful coastline, and boasts limitless to outdoor activities making it an exciting place to live and work in hospitality.

How does your personality influence your bartending approach, technique and style?

As a Bartender, my personality greatly influences my approach, technique, and style. I’m outgoing, personable and I engage my guests in conversation, creating a lively and relaxed atmosphere. I’m extremely detail-oriented and I focus on precision in crafting delicious and trendy drinks. Ultimately, my personality shapes how I interact with guests, the ambiance I create at my bar, and the care I put into each drink I serve.

What does being a Culture Shaker mean to you & how can bartenders use their influence to impact positive progress in the industry?

Being a Culture Shaker means having the ability to influence and shape the norms, attitudes, and behaviors within our bar community and industry. For us as Bartenders, this could involve leveraging our influence to promote positive changes within the service industry by advocating for sustainability, responsible consumption, diversity, inclusion, and supporting local producers and suppliers. We can also use our platforms to educate customers about the importance of these issues and encourage them to make more conscious choices when dining and drinking. By leading by example and actively engaging with our communities, Bartenders can contribute to creating a more sustainable, equitable, and socially responsible food, beverage, hospitality & service industry.

Tell us how you used Gentleman Jack in your signature cocktail.

Gentleman Jack is an ideal base for my signature Culture Shakers cocktail, El Caballero, due to its smoothness and balanced flavor profile. Its double charcoal mellowing process creates a refined taste that complements a wide range of mixers and ingredients, allowing for creative and sophisticated cocktail creations. It could be used in Old Fashioneds, Manhattans, and a few tricks that I have up my sleeve to surprise guests and pull out when I am ready. Additionally, its premium quality and reputation make it a standout choice for those looking to elevate their cocktail experience. There’s nothing else quite like Gentleman Jack!

El Caballero

  • 2 oz. Gentleman Jack
  • .75 oz. lemon juice
  • 1 oz. rhum
  • .5 oz. raw blue agave syrup
  • .75 oz. orange marmalade
  • 3 splash of orange bitters
  • Shake over ice and strain into a heart shape glass.

Edgar Sanchez

What makes the City you live and work in an exciting place to be in hospitality right now?

New Brunswick is the city where I grew up. It’s a fun and welcoming place because there are so many different places to be and so many things to do. As you stroll through downtown New Brunswick, you’ll see people out and about enjoying the theater, comedy shows, restaurants, bars and clubs with their friends and family.

How does your personality influence your bartending approach, technique and style?

When I am behind the bar, I want my guests to feel comfortable, happy, and enjoy their time with me. I really like engaging and getting feedback from my guests. Even if it is negative, I like it because it gives me an opportunity to improve my skills. With bartending, there are always new techniques and to learn to keep growing and improving.

What does being a Culture Shaker mean to you & how can bartenders use their influence to impact positive progress in the industry?

I am very proud to be a part of Culture Shaker community because I am proving to myself that I am doing a great job as a bartender. People always encourage try push myself and try new things in life, so I do! I want to thank all of my mentors for everything they have done for me to help teach and guide me. I would not be as good bartender that I am today without them always pushing me to be better.

Tell us how you used Gentleman Jack in your signature cocktail.

My base spirit was Gentlemen Jack, of course. It has a different flavor profile than what I’m used too which was exciting. I experimented with different flavors to blend with Gentleman Jack for my cocktail, and mango was my favorite because it had such a smooth taste and went so well with it.

Mangonada

  • 1.75 oz. Gentleman Jack
  • .75 oz. mango nectar
  • .5 oz. demera syrup
  • .25 oz. herbal amaro
  • .25 oz. honey syrup
  • .5 oz. lime juice
  • 2 dashes of habanero

Shaken, strained in a rocks glass over a  big cube. Add a tequila reposado float and garnish with a tajin rim

 

Please Drink Responsibly.
Gentleman Jack and Jack Daniel’s are registered trademarks. ©2024 Jack Daniel’s. Tennessee Whiskey, 40% ALC/VOL, JACK DANIEL DISTILLERY, Lynchburg, TN. 

Our Best Stories Delivered Daily



Leave a Comment

Start typing and press Enter to search