B: What made you decide to move to Bali?
A: I have been living in Asia for a while (five years in Singapore and two in the Maldives), so I was keen to stay in the region. After my two previous postings – in a busy city and on a remote island – I was looking for something in between to align with my ideal work-life balance. Bali had always struck me as a place that offered the best of both worlds: just the right blend of nature, culture and city life. To me, it’s perfect. Furthermore, Bali has put itself on a map quite significantly in the past decade with its food and beverage scene, making it a very exciting place to be professionally. All things considered, when the opportunity arose with Four Seasons, I didn’t hesitate for a second.
B: What does it take to be a good mixologist?
A: That is easy. It takes passion and the right attitude. Mixology is an art and with it comes a lot of learning, self-discipline and hard work. As with any other profession, if you want to do it at highest possible level, you have to put in the work. As mixologists, however, we mustn’t forget that we are also bartenders, and to tend the bar properly means making sure that our guests have a good time, as well as good drinks. I always like to say that mixologists serve drinks, but bartenders serve people, and that’s where the true reward of our profession lies.
B: What is your philosophy when it comes to mixology and crafting cocktails?
A: Very simple: “Less is more”. Over the years I have learned that fewer ingredients – used in line with the best ability and technology at hand – will always be more satisfying than overly complex concoctions with way too many flavours. I also like to keep it local as much as possible; that’s why I am very excited about all the flavours and ingredients that Bali has to offer.
B: What is the craziest thing you’ve seen happen in a bar during the course of your career?
A: Haha! A good bartender never tells! Bars are always very eventful places; and the later it gets, the crazier things become, from fights to love dramas to boundless after parties. I have seen my fair share of them all!
B: Where do you get your inspirations for your cocktails?
A: Pretty much wherever I look. I always love to explore the flavours I find around me and experiment with them in my cocktails. Mostly I like to discover the local flavours, fruits, spices and traditions of the place I’m in and build my drinks around them. In Bali I am particularly fascinated by arak; it’s a unique product that is made with lots of passion and dedication. I recently visited a local, traditional arak distillery and I can’t wait to utilise what I learned there.
B: What’s your most well-known creation, and why?
A: It’s hard to say as I have worked in many bars around the world and, in most of them, I have left signature cocktails behind, which was always the perfect drink for that particular place and probably wouldn’t fit anywhere else. I think I have more of a signature style than a signature creation: simple, clean drinks with lots of flavour created with a less is more philosophy in mind.
B: What are three of your favourite cocktails?
A: I love classic and simple drinks: Mezcal Margarita, Death in the Afternoon, and Last Word.
Four Seasons Resort Bali at Jimbaran Bay