Bar owner & bartender
Words by: Cherry Heering
Since I first got behind a bar in 2004, where I was left alone to figure out how to pour a pint, because a fight was breaking out across the room, I have thrived in the social and exciting environment of Scottish hospitality. Over the years following I tried my hand at many things, university, 9 to 5 etc. but one thing always remained consistent, my need to be behind the bar pouring drinks.
I worked in everything from old, dusty spit and sawdust bars, to multi level nightclubs, to swanky cocktail bars, and over the years I soaked up every bit of knowledge I could find. Gaining great inspiration from the bars of Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and London, I decided to take a management position in a hotel bar in Inverness. I landed myself with a company that I would spend the next 10 years with. They saw my passion and took a chance on a relatively inexperienced bartender who was hungry to learn and grow.
I was given great opportunities within the growing cocktail scene in Inverness, being entrusted with management of the towns busiest cocktail bar. Over the past 5 years, it has been my personal mission to improve the bar scene as a whole in this town, and help in any way I can to get Inverness recognised for its work in bartending similar to that of the cities I had previously looked up to. I am now a director of the company I joined, primarily looking after two of Inverness’ cocktail bars, Bar One, and Scotch & Rye.
My job, although management based, allows me to remain creative, creating menus, experimenting with flavours and techniques, and entering competitions.
Perhaps the most rewarding part is training new staff, and passing on my knowledge and passion for this craft onto others and hopefully watching them thrive in the industry as a result.
I am passionate about cooking as well as mixing, and I find the two very similar, its all about flavour and balance. Spice is something that has intrigued me hugely in the past, and shows up a lot in my creations, it provides a kindve new dimension to a drink and doesn’t always have to be reserved for a bloody mary. I enjoy exploring new techniques, and seeing what boundaries can be pushed to create something totally unique, whether that is molecular or something completely out of the box.
For me, like every bartender….every cocktail has a story.
"Cherry Heering lends itself really well to the flavours I enjoy playing with."