I’ve been in the service industry since I was 18. I am now 27. I first started out at Texas Roadhouse in Valdosta my freshman year in college [at Valdosta State University]. I transferred up to Atlanta to finish college at Georgia State and I worked at Nino’s Cucina Italiana [on Cheshire Bridge Road] and did a few catering gigs, and it was through catering that I fell into bartending.
After catering I ended up working at Jack’s Pizza, the dive bar over there [in Old Fourth Ward]. I did some work with FEMA [Federal Emergency Management Agency], like disaster relief and recovery, so I did a bit of traveling with that. From there, I came back from a contract and ran into Ali and Lana and they gave me a job about three or four years ago.
What was it like starting out at Across The Street?
Initially I came in for training just to kind of do a look-see and see how I liked it. They kind of just threw me out to the wolves, man. I went up to my first table and was like, ‘Hey, it’s my first day. I haven’t trained, so if you have questions I probably don’t know the answer but I’ll figure it out for you.’ I try to build
I hate when people come in and say, ‘Make me something special.’ I’m like dude, I don’t even know what you like, number one. I don’t even know you [laughs]. Like, what do you mean make you something special? So generally I just give them a glass of water [laughs].
I also hate when people say they want something strong. I try to make a cocktail and if they want to pay for a double shot then great, but if they wonder why they don’t have a lovely cocktail anymore it’s because it’s loaded up with alcohol and it’s not balanced anymore.
For the restaurant, our margaritas are absolutely divine. We use all fresh ingredients. A lot of people use simple syrup and fill it with too much sugar and too much fluff and it comes out giving you really bad heartburn. We don’t have any of those problems here. But hands down my favorite drink is a Sazerac. (see recipe)
Dump the whiskey mixture into the absinthe-rinsed glass.
December 11, 2015