Woodford Reserve Goes Beyond The Bar with NYC Bartenders

Bartending is a profession that many people initially get into with the intention of it being a “part-time” or temporary gig.  Although career bartending is finally regaining the respect that it once held during the golden era, there are still a lot of people that are attracted to the work because of the flexibility it affords to pursue other interests outside of the bar world.

Woodford Reserve takes a look at individuals that are deeply passionate both behind and BEYOND the bar and asks them to share what drives their spirit.  In this “Beyond the Bar” series, we will speak to several New York City bartenders to explore what fuels each of these highly dedicated individuals that are certainly ones to watch.

Woodford Reserve Goes Beyond The Bar Part I

Dorothy Elizabeth

Bartender at Henry NoMad, Nomo SoHo & “Friends of Dorothy” –  an experimental traveling pop-up raising money for LGBT youth 

What is your passion Beyond the Bar?

Math and Science.

How it gets started and how you are pursuing it today?

I studied chemical engineering at the University of Michigan and fell in love with calculus and chemistry. I bartended throughout undergrad since scientists aren’t always the greatest social outlet. At the moment I instruct for organic chemistry labs and work as a lab technician.

How does your work as a bartender fuel that passion?

It allows me an outlet to play with the world of food science. Most modern mixology is simply food grade applications of basic lab techniques, so they go hand in hand. Bartending gives me the ability to play with chemistry outside the lab. Infusions and centrifuge clarifications taste so much better in a cocktail at the end of the day.

What is your favorite way to enjoy Woodford Reserve?

Dorothy’s ‘Capitol Park’ Cocktail recipe

  • 1.5 oz Woodford Reserve Rye
  • .75 oz Cardamaro
  • .25 oz Bonal
  • 5 dashes Angostura
  • 5 dashes Hopped Grapefruit Bitters

Stirred, up, with Grapefruit & Orange Twist

Albert Pero III

Albert is a Bartender at the Royalton Hotel

What is your passion Beyond the Bar?

Beyond the bar my two biggest passions are people and entertainment.

How it gets started and how you are pursuing it today?

In truth, they are both so closely related on my heart. It’s interesting for me to look back at the time when I was earning a theatre degree, and realize that the real thing I was studying was people.  I studied how they interact with one another and what they need in their own pursuit of happiness. That being said, I think my point is that entertainment in every form is a way that I can make someone’s day better and by doing so help make the life struggle seem a little easier. From listening to guests or friends going through hard times to laughing and singing and dancing on the bar, whatever we do we just need to be better for each other. It feels good to do good.

How does your work & experience as a Bartender help fuel that passion?

Well I’m hoping that my passion in the booze world will someday translate to a television program where I can be that liaison for the everyday person who wants to see how the passion and love from a distiller starts as a grain and ends up in their glass as a perfect escape into a classic Woodford Old Fashioned! Nothing better than remembering your roots and the roots of all cocktails when escaping from reality for a drink. I love the idea that no matter what happens in our lives we still have two things: our favorite escape and each other. So if things are great celebrate with your pals! If things aren’t so great commiserate with your local caring barman. Because this is our way in the world as people: win or lose…we still booze!

What is your favorite way to enjoy Woodford Reserve?

Definitely a Woodford Old Fashioned!

Patrick Marran

Patricks is a Bartender at On the Rocks and Private bar services, Bar Rover

What is your passion beyond the bar?

My passions beyond the bar are in the arts; I’m an actor, director, producer & musician.

How did you get into it and how are you pursuing it now?

It’s the reason I came to New York! I’m really happy right now to be balancing my love of whisk(e)y with my artistic career. I’d definitely consider it a success that the band I’m in, The Rogue Diplomats, has an album on iTunes and will be taking a tour of Ireland in November!

How does your work & experience as a Bartender help fuel that passion?

My work as a Bartender is ingrained hand-in-hand with being a performer. They live and breathe each other— I have to think on my feet when a guest asks me to make something off menu (improvising) get my drink recipe down (lines/musical notes/staging/emotional inflection),  discipline long hours (rehearsal and tech rehearsal, performance).  It’s probably why I love doing both so much, they’re intertwined to me.

What is your favorite way to enjoy Woodford Reserve?

Oh, definitely a classic Rye Manhattan. It’s a cocktail go-to when people say they’ve never had a manhattan before, but I also use it as a barometer for testing new bitters. Specifically, I use Woodford Reserve to test/show balance and complexity.

Lynnette Agudelo

F&B Manager at Gin Parlour

What is your passion Beyond the Bar?

To own a boutique hotel with a well-known bar within in 10 – 15 years time.

I originally had studied and Majored in high school and on to college in architecture, but after a full year saw that it was not the right fit for me. Due to the fact that Architecture had evolved through the years from a hands-on career to a more automated profession.

In 2010 the opportunity for me to start for the Intercontinental Hotels company came about in perfect timing, as it was a very hard financial time for everyone as well as me, and with a newborn son at the age of 20 it came as a miracle. With a little bit of history behind hotels,I grew up with my father, a businessman who frequented Hotels due to his business travel and my mother and I would tag along sometimes during his travels. I grew a particular liking for them and their ambience in every visit. So there had always been a sort of inclination for them, like that of an old friend.

I knew that I had a lot more to give at age 20 and to accomplish. With little to no experience in hospitality I was given the opportunity to start as a hostess for Todd English’s French Ça Va Brasserie restaurant Located in the Brand new Opened Hotel at the time The Intercontinental Time Square. As time went by I developed an aptitude for the profession in all areas of Food and Beverage. But the one place that I always saw as essential to Guest experience in their travel and/or during their hotel stays was the Bar. It was the place they would escape to after a tiring day or get all the necessary information from. What a better source than the Bartender themselves and with a drink in hand.

Against many Odds, one of them becoming the First female barback( because woman Don’t pick up Kegs!) on the New Property. As years went by I became a Jack of all trades in Food and Beverage, but above all grew a passion for making drinks. I was introduced to the world of Mixology through a manager that saw potential in me and Believed that I had a particular palate to creating new work behind the bar. eventually after 6 years on property I became Head bartender and went on to competing in mixology competitions Such as Bacardi Legacy 2018 top 10 New York region Semi-Finalist, Bombay Sapphire Most imaginative Bartender 3rd place 2018, and speed rack.

Today I am proud to say that after 8yrs with the Intercontinental Hotels and my time at the time square property I am currently the Food & Beverage manager at their sister property in New York the Intercontinental Barclay. Where I help run their Beverage program at The Gin Parlour bar and restaurant. As One of the world’s top Gin Bars by Liquor.com, I continue to come up with Creative new competitive cocktails, while educating the consumer of the amazing world and details of Gin while inspiring my fellow team members to Pursuit advancement in their skills, goals and Passion through hospitality and/ or Mixology.

How does your work & experience as a Bartender help fuel that passion?

Haha, Multi-tasking, reading/ anticipating people needs and determination for sure.

These 3 skills that I have over the years developed and perfected are just not the only reason I have made it this far but that are to me essential in reaching my goals. Not only has multitasking made me more agile and aware of myself and daily work operations but enabled me to take more advantage of time during the day to accomplish more.

As for reading and anticipating needs is not only a skill that Is of great use in service but also great in interacting with people of all places and circumstances. being able to not only be aware of oneself but of a situation and all the people interacting in it has its advantages and disadvantages in taking on Opportunities in all areas of life or solving any issues. not only In a professional way but as well in personal development and goals. One can not advance in any way if we don’t become aware of our needs/ actions and how to respond to others. Taking the time to self-analyze and/or a situation is the key to handling any obstacle and overcoming it.

It’s funny it is definitely easier said than done as being impulsive is my paradox. But keeping yourself checked and being able to read those in front of you, helps a lot.

And determination. There are a lot of setbacks in life and taking on the attitude of whatever or giving up doesn’t get you any closer to your goals. But staying focused not matter what is thrown at you and learning from previous mistakes and taking it in as constructive criticism while seeing the end of the tunnel, your goal is what keeps you in route and on track.

Keep going! It is what it is.

What is your favorite Woodford Reserve cocktail?

Honestly, I prefer my bourbons neat or with one single ice cube, but if it is a cocktail choice a Sazerac would be it. Perfect display of flavors but sticking to a cleancut style.

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