Corporate Event, Uncategorized

Venice Beach Corporate Events

Guests gather at the “succulent bar” with Komodo Truck standing by

This week Shaken Not Stirred provided bartending service at two different corporate events for a tech company in Venice Beach.  I did an event there last year and was delighted that they booked me again this year. This time, I did one smaller event on Wednesday night for around 40 people, and then on Thursday I brought a staff of four to serve cocktails o 250 people.

“Weekend Celebrity” setting up at Venice corporate event

For the smaller event I worked with the coordinator to come up with unique drink menu. They chose the Pisco Sour and the Paloma as the specialty drinks. I didn’t think about it at the time, but the drinks are kind of similar. Pisco is a grape liqueur, but tastes more similar to tequila than to vodka, for instance. Then, both drinks have a similar sweet/sour thing going on. The Pisco Sour is a classic South American cocktail, that many people haven’t tried, so I always like serving.

My mom with one of my barbacks, Karen

The company hired a “succulent bar” as part of the event. The succulent bar has different pots, different varieties of live succulents, dirt, and other plants to accentuate the chosen succulent  The coordinator told me how much they paid for the succulent bar and I couldn’t believe it. I guess I am in the wrong business. I also couldn’t believe how excited the guests were about the succulent. I was standing there behind the bar twiddling my thumbs while all the guests were at the succulent bar. These millennials are quite different than my generation, who would have been three drinks in already. The guests eventually made it to the bar. I’m sorry I forget a business card for the succulent bar. Komodo Food brought their truck into the lot and provided the catering.

Full house at corporate cocktail party

The second night was the big event. Last year we scrambled making the specialty cocktails one at a time. This year I brought my drink dispensers and premixed the cocktails, which maked serving large groups a breeze. The line moves so much faster. My mom was here visiting from Montana and she went to the event with me, as she did last year. She is very outgoing and helped pour wine. The guests seemed to love her, though I was a bit embarrassed, because she tells anyone who will listen her life story…Weekend Celebrity provided the live entertainment, and this is the second time I’ve seen them on a gig, and they are very good. I highly recommend them. Dave’s Catering did the food, which unfortunately I didn’t have a chance to sample, but it looked good.  

This weekend I have one event in Thousand Oaks on Saturday and then next week is Thanksgiving. I could have taken a job on Thanksgiving, but I am done doing that. I own my own business now and I don’t work on Thanksgiving. That is a day for gratitude. Next month there will be plenty of work.    

Birthday Party Bartender, Private Bartender, Uncategorized

Hermosa Beach 30th Birthday Party

Pier Avenue Hermosa Beach

Saturday I returned to my old home, Hermosa Beach to bartend a 30th birthday party. I just love Hermosa Beach and it is by far the best place to live in Los Angeles County- if you can afford to live there and don’t have to commute to the rest of the city. It is a little difficult to get in and out of, if you have to drive back and forth to LA. It is also a fantastic place to live if you are in your twenties, or just turning 30.

The birthday boy’s wife hired me to bartend the party and we came up with a drink menu and shopping list together. I made Moscow Mules and Old Fashioneds. I keep making those drinks over and over again at parties, but they are very popular right now. An Old Fashioned is a very strong drink, and maybe that is why it is called an Old Fashioned. Strength is not often in style now days. Anyway, the guests seemed to like them.

The Taco Guy Catering

I set up my portable bar in the backyard and The Taco Guy Catering set up across from me. This is the way it goes at most of these birthday parties – the hosts hire a bartender and a caterer so that they can enjoy themselves without having to run around serving everyone. I try to be of maximum service at every event I do so that the hosts can actually enjoy themselves and not have to worrry about the bar.

Friends mingling at 30th birthday party

30th Birthday Party Ideas

  • Throw a backyard party
  • Hire a bartender
  • Invite friends and family
  • Create a theme

This week I have two corporate events at a company in Venice. I did an event for them last year with over two hundred guests and it went very well. I will be serving Pisco sours at one of the events and it is always fun making those. This weekend I will travel to Thousand Oaks to bartend a birthday party. Next week is Thanksgiving week and I had inquires about bartending jobs, but I am spending that day with family. Next month will be very busy with tons of holiday parties and many of them are on the weekdays. Happy holidays!

Birthday Party Bartender, Fiesta Bartender, Mobile Bartenders, Party Bartenders

South El Monte Birthday Fiesta

Last night I was the bartender at a large birthday fiesta in South El Monte. There were over 100 people in attendance and we ran completely out of booze at 11pm, which was when I was scheduled to leave – so I guess that worked out well. There was still Bud Light left, so those people wishing for one last beverage were not disappointed. We went through all the Corona, Sol, Tecate, and Dos Equis. I was pretty busy the whole night.  This was a Mexican birthday party and I have been doing many of these. As I have said before I am right at home doing these parties, and my Mexican name is Roberto.  One of the Mexican waiters at a restaurant I used to bartend at called me El Pinche Perro, but that is another story.

I made several different cocktails including Cadillac Margaritas, Mai Tais, Sex on the Beach, blended Pina Coladas, Capes Cods, Bay Breeze, Sea Breeze, Malibu and pineapple, and Cuba Libre. If you don’t know what all of those are – look them up. The important thing is that I know what they are. Pineapple juice is a key ingredient in many of those drinks.

I had a special request from a Peruvian lady in attendance. She wanted me to make a batch of a Peruvian native drink, the Pisco Sour. I had never made the drink before, but was familiar with it because my ex wife was from Santiago, Chile and that drink is popular in Chile as well.  Pisco

Reaching for the tools of the trade with a boss watch on!
Reaching for the tools of the trade with a boss watch on!
My workstation gets messy when serving 100 people!
My workstation gets messy when serving 100 people!
DJ lighting setup
DJ lighting setup

is a clear grape liquor that is deadly and will sneak up on you if you are not careful. The Pisco Sour is made with fresh lemons, Pisco, and egg whites in a blender. In Chile, they use powdered sugar as well, but this lady had me use something different. I think she was happy with the drink and I didn’t sample it because I no longer drink. Anyway, I think the Pisco Sour is a great drink to serve and impress your guests. Most people in North America have never had it and don’t know what it is.

I just booked a wedding in Santa Barbara in July. I have at least one wedding booked every month until November. My goal is to book one party or event every weekend and so far I am doing that every month. This month I am on track to do seven events, which I think is my record for one month since I have been in business. I am very grateful to be getting so many events. I just bought a portable bar, so I can now offer that service as well.

Please call me if you have any questions about cocktails, venues, or anything else related to bartending and events. I will be happy to help you, and I have many shopping lists I have done for other parties with prices on them, so you can get an idea what to budget. I can estimate pretty close how much you will need for the time length and number of people at your event. My goal is to get you in under budget and keep all of your guests happy. That way everyone is happy! Buenos Dias!