Blog post

Letters from bootcamp

A bottle of Prosecco exploded in my face a few days ago. OK, lesson learned in the hard way. One shouldn't really carry on hitting it with the edge of a knife once there are tiny cracks all around the neck of the bottle.

We were practicing sabrage with my team, and I wanted to make the physical principles of the process clear. I kept explaining about molecular structure when ka-booom: the bottle covered me with prosecco and tiny glass shrapnel... Thank god we found a hacksaw later: a lot more reliable instrument to perform the traditional opening technique.

The team seems to be going through the most exciting change I've ever seen. I always knew that sommeliers were hardcore if it comes to learning new skills, but what I've seen is beyond any expectations really. I can go as far to state that the sommeliers in my team actually want to become bartenders to a certain point. This went way beyond thinking with the enemy`s head. It turned into something like becoming the enemy itself. But more nasty and ruthless of course.

I've seen Christina having to shake a cocktail for the first time ever in her life. Looking at her a few weeks later doing all sort of cocktails and teaching us bartender's tricks, well, if I was in the Bar team's place, I would be shitting bricks with fear.

I decided to do a bit of close-quarters reconnaissance and observe the enemy in its natural habitat. So for the first time ever in my life I wilfully went to a cocktail bar. You've got to understand, I don't normally do this. So there I was, and I learned a couple of lessons before the total blackout hit. (I'll be thankful all my life to Esther our instructor for taking care of me that night. Another lesson learned: an average liver can only process finite amount of tequila in a single evening).

1. Bartending is technically a cleaning job: you are on infinite washing up duty and when you have a bit of time you make cocktails.

2. Speed seems important, that's new information to us.

3. Free-pouring: well, I don't think I'll start working on my 50 and 25 mls now, but it seems to speed up the lengthy process of measuring ingredients.

4. Bartender's wisdom: gotta work on my cheesy cliches for drunkards - perhaps I should read Coelho or so.

The training sessions really do motivate us. Unfortunately we do not like to waste the booze, so they usually finish in a rather jolly and bright minded way. I think we're getting ready for the first round...

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