The Tasting Panel magazine

October 2014

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 108 of 132

108  /  the tasting panel  /  october 2014 DAY IN THE LIFE backdrops (though there's plenty of that), but imagine a 24/7 job where no two days are alike and accountability is all about how much ground you can cover. Sound fun and easy? In one month's time, Schaefer is expected to visit roughly 40 plus accounts, lead up to six to eight trainings and host at least one impactful trade event per month, all in the name of reminding both trade and consumers about ABSOLUT ELYX in a way that "brings it home," says Schaefer. "The biggest part of my job is to edu- cate people about what's in the bottle. And not only do I have to know about all our brands, I have to know about everyone else's vodka," she says. "I focus mainly on the trade, because if you train the trade, they'll teach the consumer." And, according to Schaefer, a successful Brand Ambassador takes an inclusive approach. "It's not about why my brand is better than other brands," she explains, "it's about what makes my brand different. I think there are a lot of really great vodkas and it's a highly competitive category. For me to get people to enjoy and appreciate ABSOLUT, I have to explain the differ- ence and show how we are different as a company—one bartender at a time." Schaefer is quick to point out that if she didn't love her work, it would be impossible to succeed. "Sometimes I have to tell myself 'No,'" she says, "take a break and do something for yourself— you don't get a lot of personal time in this job." There is flexibility however in that she gets to create her own schedule, but it's a full load. "I'm on conference calls sometimes at 8 a.m., then out doing account visits all day, then out hosting an event—sleep at some point—get up and do it all over again." An ABSOLUT Winding Road "My love affair with ABSOLUT began long before I started working with the company," says Schaefer. In 2008, she was one of ten bartenders from around the country to land a role on a new reality show about bartending called On the Rocks, which just happened to be sponsored by ABSOLUT. "I made it far, but didn't win—I got kicked off, but here I am now, the Brand Ambassador of ABSOLUT ELYX!" An ironic twist of fate that began a decade prior with a big start at Shadows on the Hudson in Poughkeepsie, New York where she met and began working with Tobin Ellis and his cocktail consultancy. A move to Las Vegas brought more consulting Constantin Alexander, Beverage Manager at Hakkasan (at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas) discusses the attributes of ABSOLUT ELYX with Kristen Schaefer.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Tasting Panel magazine - October 2014