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Stock the bar with Stefano Tatti

Photo for: Stock the bar with Stefano Tatti

02/02/2021 Italian bartender and restaurant manager Stefano Tatti answers the most asked ‘behind-the-bar’ questions by bartenders.

Born and raised in Italy, Stefano Tatti has been in the hospitality industry for over ten years. He moved to London in 2017 as a Senior Bartender for Craft London. Stefano then moved on to working at Soho House as a bar supervisor before moving back to Craft. He made his way up from Head Bartender to Assistant Restaurant Manager and then to Restaurant Manager. Currently, Stefano works at Joy at Portobello as the manager while still deeply involved in the bar scene. 

Stefano is a judge at the 2021 London Spirits Competition, where spirits are judged based on quality, value, and packaging. Today, Stefano speaks to us about his time in the bar world and answers some of the most frequent questions bartenders have. 

Why did you want to become a bartender? 

“At the time, I was in love with the idea to do a job that allowed me to move everywhere in the world and find a job the day after.”

According to you, how has the role of the Bartender evolved, especially during the Covid wave?

“From the bartender point of view, I’m afraid that 2020 didn’t bring a lot of evolution, but the changes it brought for bartenders were good. For managers, this time was useful. A part of our task is adapting and problem-solving. I think that for some managers, covid has been a huge master of that.”

What are some of the most important skills for a bartender to have?

“Know what are the priorities and expectations at every moment. Sometimes can be super focussed, others find the right balance between fast service and quality.”

What do you look for when planning to buy spirits for your bar?

“It is different to things from different products: it may be a reliable and very recognized product that allows me to do a fast and easy selling or something more interesting that allows me to engage the guests. I think that it is essential to have both.”

What support programs work best for you from suppliers?

“A good program of staff training is useful. If the staff knows what is selling, it is a win-win situation: better service and more products ordered from that supplier.”

What cocktails and drinks trends do you see in 2021?

“I think that we will restart from where we start in the summer of 2020. The Italian way to make aperitif with free buffets was a winner, not necessarily for the business in terms of revenue, but people love it.”

What's the best part of your job?

“We’ll manage service and then at the end of a hard and long shift see everything and everyone happy. Work can be hard and stressful, but if we create a good working environment, it’s game-changing.”

How are you marketing your bar to drive some foot traffic during covid-19?

“Pre-bottled cocktails were a winner. We sold a lot all the time, especially during November’s lockdown.” 

Any tips for new bartenders?

“Make good life experience, have some hobbies. Guests love to find interesting people behind the bar for having a great conversation.”

What are you drinking when you’re not working?

“Beer when I’m not eating, red wine is usually my first choice, whisky and mezcal my spirits, old fashioned and Margarita my cocktails.”

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