Going 10 Rounds with Top Bartender Christine Wiseman
The talented bartender and bar director of the Broken Shaker in L.A.’s Freehand Hotel, tackles our speed round of questions.
What do you like to drink after a shift? “Lately, I have been trying to keep it a little more chill, so a glass (or a bottle) of natural wine.”
What is the all-time best dive bar jukebox song? “Stellar by Incubus.”
After all these years bartending and creating drinks, do you still enjoy going out to bars? “I do. I love supporting my community and seeing what everyone is doing. You can’t continue to grow if you are not challenged or challenge others.”
Name the first good drink you ever drank and where you had it. “I have three cocktails that I will never forget: Paul McGee’s Banana Daiquiri, Joaquin Simo’s Grilled Peach Piña Colada and my first Nico de Soto Pandan experience.”
What book on cocktails or spirits is your go-to resource? “I love all of Death & Co’s books, while my cocktails are not at all like their drinks, I respect the simplicity and elegance in what they do and always get inspiration from them. I am also more into using cookbooks or books that chefs have written. There are a couple of books out there about fermentation that I am obsessed with as well as the Noma book.”
What’s your favorite cocktail and food pairing? “Tacos and mezcal.”
What drink are you most proud of creating? “The Carrot Colada (gin, Montenegro, marjoram, pink peppercorn, carrot coconut orgeat, lemon juice).”
Is there one person (dead or alive) you’d like to make a cocktail for? “José Andrés.”
What’s your favorite shot-and-a-beer combination? “Hell or High Watermelon Wheat Beer and mezcal.”
What is the one tool that you always make sure to pack when you’re traveling for business? “Glitter.”
Christine Wiseman is a talented bartender and the bar director of the Broken Shaker in L.A.’s Freehand Hotel.
Interview has been condensed and edited.