Harrison Lee – The Diplomat
Toronto – Public’s Choice Winner
– Fun facts about MADE WITH LOVE National Finalists –
How long have you been a bartender and how did you get into bartending?
5 years, give or take. I just hung out in bars until somebody hired me. The rest is history.
What turns you on about bartending, what are the new trends that are exciting you?
Bartending combines the best aspects of front and back of the house. I love being able to interact with guests as well as create something that they enjoy.
As for new trends, I like the low ABV trend. Offering a full flavored, carefully constructed cocktail with an ABV more closely in line with a pint is a pretty cool way to diversify a menu.
What are some of your favorite ingredients to work with?
I like all the old tiki stuff. So my favorite ingredients tend to be bizarre syrups and heaps of rum.
Which bartenders have been inspirations for you?
Jeffrey Morgenthaler and Dave Arnold
What is the most ridiculous cocktail request you ever had?
Someone once asked me for a Flaming Moe. When I told them I didn’t have cough syrup on hand they lost interest.
If you had to describe your bartending style using a style of music in comparison, what would it be?
I suppose it would be classical music. My style is very technical, careful and practiced.
We ask you to create a cocktail called MADE WITH LOVE, what’s in it?
Gin, goatweed shrub, rhino horn tincture and green Skittles foam. Served with oysters under the northern lights.
You have the choice to invite anybody you wish to sit at your bar, (fictional, dead or alive) who would it be?
Norm MacDonald. He doesn’t drink, but he’d still be great.
Which cocktail would you serve to your lover? And which one would you serve to your ex?
They would both get negronis.
What got you into MADE WITH LOVE and how do you feel about the National Finals?
I got into it to test my skills at my craft in a new and challenging way. As for the finals, I feel nervous.