Name: Tony Galdes
1. Where are you from?
2. Where do you currently work?
CEO of Le 4e Mur, Montreal Bartending School, and Nexus SmartBar
3. How long have you been in the industry?
Took my first bartending class at 18 and got my first job at Le Lab at 19, so 8 years now!
4. If you could work with any other bartender in the world for one night who would it be?
Tom Dyer if it was a chill/party type of bar and Simone Caporale for a cocktail/higher end venue
5. If you could visit any bar in the world where would it be?
City Space Bar in Moscow or Nightjar in London
6. Who is your mentor, if you have one?
Sam Dalcourt hands down, he didn’t teach me the technical know-how to work a bar but rather the beauty and subtleties of the craft
7. Why do you feel MADE WITH LOVE, as a cocktail competition, is important for the Industry in Toronto?
As in every city, to democratize the cocktail culture and allow every bar a mass-audience platform to let others know they have an interest and skill in cocktails. Not every bar has the budget for high deployment PR campaigns.
8. What is the skill you look for in a competitor when you are judging?
It depends on the type of competition. Some competitions are more technique & knowledge oriented whereas a competition like MADE WITH LOVE is more about showmanship and originality
9. What is the most impressive thing you have ever seen a bartender do at a competition?
Didn’t see it live, but Tim Phillips in the WorldClass finals in 2013 did a Houdini-esque routine for one of his drinks where he dropped his shaker with his whole drink inside but prepared a backup of his whole drink in an emptied egg with a syringe and served it at the last second which completely astounded everybody including the judges.
10. What’s the most frequent error competitors do in a competition?
Misunderstand the goal of the competition. Competitors either go too simple or too complex for both their drinks and presentation.
11. What’s the biggest challenge a judge has?
Staying sober and focused until the end of the competition
12. What is the most precious advice you could give to a competitor?
Chill the fuck out. Stress is your worst enemy. It makes you shake in front of judges & forget ingredients.