Interview with Ryan Storey

Ryan Storey | O Lounge & Coast | Vancouver

Ryan Storey is the Bar Manager for O Lounge and Coast Restaurant in Vancouver, where he has been mixing drinks for the restaurant for close to 3 years.

How did you get the nickname “Martini Slinger”?

I used to own a martini lounge in Nanaimo where I had 27 martini’s on the list. I worked the bar on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights all I did was shake drinks and that is where the nickname came from.

How did you end up becoming a Bartender?

My dad owned restaurants all his life. At 12 years old I started washing dishes in the restaurant, then I was cooking and then running front of the house and I started bartending when I was 23.

Would you consider yourself a Bartender or a Mixologist or both? And why?

Straight up – I am a bartender. I am here to create an experience and put on a show.

What was your training like and how long have you been a leader in this industry?

I am pretty much self-taught, I learned everything by experience through the restaurant industry.

What goes into creating a new cocktail? What inspires you?

I use fresh ingredients, fresh and simple. It is just like food, keeping it nice and fresh.

What are some current trends you’ve seen in the cocktail market?

Going back to the classics, from Negroni’s and Old Fashioned’s to Manhattan’s.

What type of drinks do you like personally?

Beer and red wine and a scotch after dinner once in awhile.

If you weren’t a bartender, what would you be doing?

I went to school for business and marketing, so I would be doing something in marketing.

What are the ingredients that have been hard to get?

We tend to use what’s in season, fresh and local, so finding ingredients hasn’t been an issue.

What are the most unique ingredients you have every used to create a cocktail?

Honey roasted pears – for a honey roasted puree

Infused cardemon pumpkin spices – simple syrup for a Thanksgiving Cocktail – Pumpkin Martini

What is one of your tricks of the trade?

I have a shake weight which looks like a mini barbell, I use it to entertain.

By: Richard Wolak