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The Modern Bar Cart Podcast

May 9, 2019

In this episode, we hang out with bartender Zac Hoffman and focus in on cocktail competitions and the craft bartender experience. What does it take to become a real bartender, how do you deploy those skills to build a career, and what’s it like going head-to-head with other skilled mixologists to create a cocktail that rises above the rest?

Some of the specific topics we discuss with Zac include:

  • How he steered his chef-driven career, kicked off at the Culinary Institute of America, to take a more liquid-focused route, going on to drive some of the best beverage programs in the Mid-Atlantic.
  • What it means to be a brand ambassador for a craft spirits venture, and how brand ambassadorship can enhance the career of an aspiring bartender.
  • The four different tiers of cocktail competitions, as defined by Zac, ranging from the God-tier, to more local or brand-driven experiences.
  • What it takes to develop a successful cocktail competition entry, drawing from Zac’s experience using Embitterment Aromatic Bitters in his recent creation: Don’t Sleep on Kings.
  • How to spend an intoxicated evening with Karl Marx,
  • And much, much more.