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Mixology, Memes and Everything In Between: Devi’s Journey through the world of bartending, entrepreneurship and content generation

  • Devi Singh Bhati
  • Instagram: @mixandtravel, @berojgarbartender
  • Industry Experience : 8 years
  • Favorite Cocktail: Highballs are a top pick, especially curated ones like whisky with ginger beer or whisky ginger ale with lime.
  • Favorite Non-Alcoholic Beverage: Prefers fresh lime soda and coconut water.
  • Signature Combo: Fresh lime soda paired with a fish thali is a go-to.
  • Preferred Bar Scene: Prefers street-style bars over fancy establishments for a relaxed atmosphere.
  • Top Picks: Slow Tide in Goa holds a special place locally, while internationally, Savoy stands out.

Devi’s journey into bartending wasn’t a straight shot. It began with a love for meeting people and a childhood fascination with flavors, leading him through various odd jobs like security guard and waiter. But a stint in Goa solidified his desire for a career that combined these passions. Bartending offered the perfect blend: creating delicious drinks and forging connections with customers.

Speaking of the average working hours for bar tenders, Devi describes the typical workday as a 10-11 hour shift, but acknowledges the unpredictable nature of the industry. There have been stretches of long hours maybe 16-18 hours in a row, followed by days without work. However, his current role as a consultant for brands offers more flexibility.

Beyond the Basics: Skills for Success

For aspiring bartenders, Devi emphasizes kindness as the number one ingredient. It is a philosophy that transcends bartending, applicable to any pursuit. But technical skills are crucial too. Mastering the fundamentals, clear communication, and the ability to balance flavors are essential. Devi also stresses the importance of community involvement, social media presence, and staying updated on industry trends.

Mixing and Traveling: A Spirited Adventure

Bartending opened doors to a world beyond borders. Devi’s first trip abroad was a result of his skills. This experience, of mixing drinks and exploring new places, became the seed for his company, Mix and Travel. They partner with brands, execute events, and provide skilled bartenders. Devi uses his travels to curate unique beverage experiences, bringing the stories and ingredients he encounters to life in comfortable settings.

The Future of Bartending: Experimentation and Growth

The beverage industry, according to Devi, is experiencing a post-pandemic boom. Customers are more adventurous, and well-traveled Indians are seeking to recreate their global cocktail experiences at home. This fuels creativity among bartenders, pushing them to explore new techniques and flavor profiles.

The Evolving Culture of Bartending

However, Devi observes a shift in the bartending community. While it was once a close-knit and inclusive group, he feels competition has intensified in recent years. “Healthy competition is good,” he says, “but the industry needs that sense of unity again.”

Mentorship remains valuable throughout a bartender’s career, and Devi acknowledges that mentors change as we evolve. Danil Nevsky is a name he mentions with respect.

The Power of Networking

In the age of social media, staying relevant requires consistent engagement.

“If you are not on social media people will forget you. I try to be out there as much as possible through social media or through event meet-ups.” Says Devi.

Devi uses his own platform to share bartending content and connect with others.

Devi’s humor shines through in his meme page, “@berojgarbartender.” He admits to spending more time here than on his personal account, and the engagement he receives speaks volumes about his comedic timing. He recognizes memes as a powerful tool for connecting with people and keeping his content fresh on social media.

Financial Education: A Missing Piece

Devi recognizes the financial realities of bartending. He advises young bartenders to prioritize learning in their first five years, not just the money. But financial management is also crucial. Bartenders, he observes, often fall into the trap of impulsive spending. He advocates for educational initiatives sponsored by beverage companies to equip young bartenders with financial literacy skills.

Investing in Yourself: A Long-Term Game

Self-worth is another key concept. After 7-8 years, Devi suggests bartenders start thinking about their next steps. It could be branching out, starting a side hustle, or taking on leadership roles. Planning for the future is essential, and financial management is a critical but often overlooked aspect of a bartender’s career.

Devi’s story goes beyond the art of mixing drinks. It’s about building experiences, fostering connections, and injecting a healthy dose of humor into the world of bartending. His advice is a valuable resource for anyone considering a career behind the bar, reminding us that success requires not just talent, but also the ability to connect, adapt, and plan for the future.