The Tasting Panel magazine

December 2017

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december 2017  /  the tasting panel  /  107 Datz is known for its quirky attitude. What's the key to keeping the bever- age menu consistent with the brand image? I really pay attention to pop culture and whatever the latest "trends" are. People come to Datz to have a fun and unique experience. By creating pop culture–inspired menu items, I am able to create something the guests can either relate to or get a sense of nostalgia from. This also creates memorable and photographic opportunities for them. I want the guests to remember what they ordered here and tell everyone they know how amazing it was . . . especially on social media. What led you to your career in the industry? After being behind the bar for eight years or so, I sort of fell into corpo- rate restaurant management. I managed for quite some time at a corporate restaurant and then moved into a different direction with an independently- owned mega-restaurant, Datz! After a few years I was promoted to General Manager. I gradually took over more and more responsibility with the Datz beverage program as I learned each and every element more in depth. After seven years, I am now managing the beverage program for several stores and we are growing even more. As a woman leader, what is your advice to fellow females starting out in the business? I feel like people often ask me what it's like being a woman in a predomi- nantly-male industry, but I am not bothered by it at all. I would tell other women to not even think about the fact that they are women. I am seeing more and more successful women in this industry and it's because they worked hard and put themselves out there. Learn everything that you can and keep trying. I can tell you that I have learned the most from my failures; they are humbling and eye-opening. Every chance I take is a lesson learned, successful or not. What is your favorite part of your position? I absolutely love the cocktail experience. I think it's amazing that you can take someone on a complete sensory journey with one cocktail. From flavor pair- ings, aromas, visual appeal, and telling a story, you can really create something amazing for a guest at your bar. I really like to spend time behind the bar as well. It is so much fun to be able to work with guests and create something magical for them. It's also nice to be able to work side by side with my bartenders. What is your favorite spirit category to work with and why? This changes all the time! I would have to say whiskey for now simply because it is so versatile and delicious. There are also so many different types of whiskey that you can make something for almost any palate. Apple Butter Jeans, Booze with the Fig ◗ 1 ½ oz. Calvados ◗ 1 barspoon apple butter ◗ 2 dried figs, cut in half ◗ ½ oz. maple simple (1:1 maple and hot water) ◗ ½ oz. lemon juice ◗ 4 oz. hard apple cider For garnish: ◗ ½ fresh fig ◗ Mint sprig In a mixing tin, combine figs, maple, lemon juice, and apple butter. Muddle. Add Calvados and ice. Shake vigorously to combine for 10–15 seconds. Double strain into ice-filled Collins glass and top with hard apple cider. Garnish with half of a fresh fig and a mint sprig. Zuch on being a woman in the industry: "I am see- ing more and more successful women in this industry and it's because they worked hard and put themselves out there. Learn every- thing that you can and keep trying."

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