Mixologist Of The Month - Dan Bovey

Dan's Bio.

Date of birth: 5th March 1986.

Birth place: Torquay.

Height: 6' 3" on a good day.

Eye colour: Blue.

Nationality: Brittish.

"My career really started about 7 years ago when I joined the guys at Sahara, they opened my eyes to what a bartender could be and from there I was hooked. I started competing in cocktail comps and going to more and more trainings and soon I was spending all my spare time researching cocktails and learning about spirits.

After a few years I became the GM at Sahara and it was then I got into writing menus and building the bar into what I wanted it to be. Since then, we have had bartenders in all the major UK comps, in the bar magazines and started to work with the rest of the Reading scene as well to get a community started.

Everything really kicked off for me when I got into the 3 most promising for Bacardi Legacy, that year was incredible and I got to meet so many bartenders and see so many places."
Awards, accolades, trophies.

I've competed in a lot of comps, the most notable achievements are...

Winning Chambord Rendevous.
Most promising in the Bacardi Legacy.
3rd Place in the Grand Bal.
El Momento Perfecto listed in Gaz Regan's 101 Best Cocktails of 2012.
My cocktail listed in all the Jamie's Italians across the country.
Being asked to run the City Space Bar in Singapore for a Michelin Star food and cocktail week called Chefs with Altitude.
Claim to Fame

Nothing that I can speak about......

What do you as a mixologist think about beer? Any brews of note for you?
I love interesting beers, ales and stouts but I can't stand most lager, it's just boring as hell. Give me a local brew over a lager any day. Check out Bingham's Brewery in Twyford. www.binghams.co.uk

If you could offer a couple of short pieces of advice to the average bartender, what would they be?
Leave your problems at the door. Treat every guest like you would want to be looked after. Keep learning.

Surely you have some pet peeves about bartenders -- care to share?
I hate seeing bartenders make fools of themselves at events like Imbibe by getting too wasted and then cruising stalls for free booze to take home. Go there to learn and to try new products, yes it's great to see all your friends but the after parties are for the real drinking.

How did you get started?
I started in a bar called Zulu's in Torquay, quiet most of the year but during tourist season it would get crazy! I got the bug here when I got my first taste for how working for a bar was like working in a family.

How were you trained in bartending?
I learnt from other bartenders and then furthered my learning through the internet, books and experimentation.

Did you take any courses?
I've taken the WSET intermediate wine course and I go to all the training and tasting sessions I can.

What's your process for creating a new cocktail? And what inspired you in the first place?
I look for inspiration in the brand or a specific idea and then work from there. It's much easier to come up with the cocktail after, than try and weave a story around a cocktail you've already created. I love stretching the truth in my stories...

What is your favourite cocktail To make?
Swizzles, they're just a lot of fun, get some awesome tunes on and shake that booty...

What are some of your favourite tools?
Tin on tin shakers, Japanese bar spoons and my charming smile!

What is your favourite mixology resource?
BarlifeUK, it's always up to date and lists all the upcoming comps and events. Si and Andy have it spot on. www.barlifeuk.com

What does success mean for you?
Success for me is going to work happy every day and gaining the respect of my peers.

What are some current trends you've seen in the cocktail market?
Shrubs, elaborate serving vessels and craft ice.

Where do you see yourself in five years?
Owning my own bar with my beautiful wife somewhere by the sea, nothing too fancy, just great customer focus and a bucket load of whisky.

If you weren't in the drinks industry, what do you think you would be doing now?
I have no idea, I did graphics design at uni... I love this industry I couldn't really see myself doing anything else.

Your biggest career influencer?
The bartenders of Sahara when I first started, Jim, Joe, Dan, Monkeyface and Mark. They gave me the bug to push myself and further my learning.

First drink you ever tried?
WKD Blue, still one of the best! A very guilty pleasure!!

We've all had a bad experience with at least one drink. What drink do you most avoid?
I can't drink whisky and coke, I love Whisky and I can drink Coke but the two together makes me want to hurl.

Your hangover cure?
Eat everything!

£10m comes to you. What do you do next?
Shut the bar, have a private party with my friends and then look after my family.

Bar or cellar at home?
Bar, I don't often make drinks at home but I do like to have the odd Rob Roy, Sazerac or Manhattan after work.

Favourite beer?
Guiness, or Talisker conditioned Doodle Stout from Binghams.

Urlar Sauvigon Blanc or a nice Pinot Noir .

Scotch - The best I've ever had was a Sherry Casked Lagavulin 18, I got to try it straight from the cask at the distillery. Amazing!

Manhattan - Sweet with Cocch vermouth and Rittenhouse 100.

Fav Bar?
Happiness Forgets - Great service and a chilled atmosphere.

Hawksmoor - The best steak I've ever had and the cocktails and service are impeccable.

World location?

Fav film?

A-Z of Whisky.

Horizons - Parkway Drive.

Parkway Drive.

Our Mixologists
December '14
Maurizio Palermo
November '14
Gabriela Moncada
October '14
Nicci Stringfellow
September '14
Ricardo Dynan
August '14
Matthias Lataille
July '14
Paolo Tonellotto
June '14
Stelios Papadopoulos
May '14
Frank McGivern
April '14
Tom Vernon
March '14
Carl Anthony Brown
February '14
Ali Reynolds
January '14
Jamie McDonald
December '13
Phil Huckle
November '13
Tom Higham
September '13
Dan Bovey
August '13
Rob Wood
July '13
Meimi Sanchez
June '13
Carlos Londono
May '13
Joe Stokoe
April '13
JJ Goodman
March '13
miguel Arbe
February '13
Imants Zusmanis
January '13
Esther Medina
December '12
Yoann Lazareth
October '12
Alex Proudfoot
September '12
Nick Wykes
August '12
Mike Aikman
July '12
Amit Sood
June '12
John Collingwood
May '12
Jake Burger
April '12
Andy Mil
March '12
Anthony Peart
February '12
Colin Asare-Appiah
January '12
Jody Monteith
December '11
Mario Neziri
November '11
Julien Lafond
October '11
John Ennis
September '11
Luis Simoes
August '11
George Matzaridis
July '11
Ago Perrone
June '11
Gavin McGowan Madoo
May '11
Tim Homewood
April '11
Sam Kershaw
March '11
Jill Saunders
February '11
Andreas Tsanos
January '11
Marian Beke
December '10
Dimi Lezinska
November '10
James Wynn-Williams
October '10
Jack Rackham
September '10
Ron Frith
August '10
Erik Lorincz
June '10
Giuseppe Gallo
May '10
Sam Carter
April '10
Adam Elmegirab
March '10
Matthew Dakers
February '10
Emily Williamson
January '10
Mirko Falconi
December 09
Stefano Cossio
November 09
Patsy Christie
October 09
Alex Kratena
September 09
Paul Martin
August 09
Sean Ware
July 09
Leanne Davidson
June 09
Duane Shepherd
May 09
Stefanie Holt
April 09
Jim Wrigley
March 09
Papa Jules
February 09
Zoran Peric
January 09
Dale DeGroff
December 08
Ben Reed
November 08
Jamie Stephenson
October 08
Alex Kammerling
September 08
Ian Burrell
August 08
Tony Conigliaro
July 08
Alex Turner
June 08
Richie Fawcett
May 08
Greg Akoka
April 08
Simon Difford
March 08
Mickael Perron
February 08
Andy Pearson