Mr. Mohammad Ali
What’s in a name? Well, a whole lot apparently.
The students at ‘The Mixologist’ ask you not to call them bartenders because they frown upon the ‘B’ word.
Don’t let the terminology fool you; each of these mixologists can whip up a mean cocktail in about a minute. And they’re good.
Let’s get back to the school; The Mixologist Academy of Bartending is a whole lot of skill based action peppered with passion in every visible crevice. This school was started in June 2013 as an attempt to professionalize the Goan bartending industry. The idea just grew from there.
Mr. Mohammad Ali, is responsible for that vision. A talented Mixologist to this day, he has grown through the ranks steadily in this industry and decided it was time to give back. With experience that crossed 9 years and a passion that was unrivalled by any other, he certainly has the expertise required to mould the young minds aspiring to venture into the hospitality industry’s much overlooked craft in Goa & India.
According to him, “most establishments dismiss bartenders as ‘pourers’ without a second thought. We are more than just one dimensional. If utilised and trained properly, the bartender can be solely responsible for increasing your sales and adding depth and a personality to your establishment that most places lack.”
“While a bartender will add personality, a mixologist will add soul.” He adds.
“The Mixologist has taken the initiative to better the Goan bartender. What Goa really lacks is a professional bartending academy that trains willing students in every aspect of the craft. Not just the ‘stirring & shaking’; but the finer points, like the scientific approach of molecular mixology, personality building, talking to your clients, flairing, dealing with difficult clients etc. If utilised properly, a bartender can double your sales in no time.” Says Ali.
“The Goan bartending industry deserves the best. This is what we have taken upon ourselves to do. We definitely are trying our best” says Ali, “We offer our graduates placements in five star hotels, fine dining establishments as well as jobs abroad. The relationship with our students doesn’t end after the course is over. We also offer freelance jobs where we give our students jobs at high-end events where they make substantial money. It’s an option taken up by many since their potential to grow and receive exposure (not forgetting the big pay checks) is better.”
The potential to grow is massive. In fact, it is the one trade in the hospitality industry where you can grow the fastest. (Depending on your skill & dedication)
“We are trying to grow constantly with different organizations as well” he says. They work with a plethora of brands that include Aperol, Paul John Whiskey, Diageo, Desmondji amongst others.
“We are constantly looking for support within and outside Goa to further the art of mixology. We are constantly learning newer ways to be as creative as possible with mixology. Study is essential and a thirst for knowledge is key.”
The Mixologist is doing its part in developing the Goan bartending scene. They believe they still have a long way to go, but Ali looks energized by the thought. He has started by changing the outlook of the bartending scene in Goa. By christening himself as a ‘liquid chef’ he has taken up the challenge of adding an Indian twist to molecular mixology. There are innovations contantly showcased on their social media and at their events.
Cocktail culture isn’t slowly coming back; it just never left. Keep an eye out for our work; and don’t forget to tip your bartender.