Interview with Kim Sun-kyung, Glam Lounge ] Groove Korea: You have held cocktail classes. Tell us about them. Kim Sun-kyung: The Glam Lounge terrace, Baron, is a very popular place. With its luxurious atmosphere and unique concept distinguishing it from the lounge below, Baron has been drawing more and more customers. To let more people know about what makes this place special, we decided to hold cocktail classes. We wanted to show people that cocktails are not difficult, com- plicated things, but rather something that every- one can easily enjoy, and we were happy as we got a lot of positive reaction. Do you plan to continue the classes in fu- ture? The cocktail classes will be continued, yes. I’m planning to redesign the classes so that more people can participate and to have more content. I hope I’ll get to enjoy the classes with more peo- ple in the future. You have worked in the Cheongdam area, which is known for its glamorous lifestyle. How is Itaewon different from there? There are distinct cultures in each area. I think the strength of Itaewon is that it’s a place where people can mingle with each other very easily. People can approach strangers, say hi and have a good time together without feeling awkward, and that’s special. It’s also a place that is always full of positive energy. What’s special about Glam Lounge? We’re doing our best to provide new items and superior service and keep our luxurious lounge concept. Our crew is busy making sure we meet our customers’ expectations, especially as we are trying to maintain our reputation as the hot- test place in Itaewon. You have lots of fans. What’s your secret? Bartending is a job that involves a lot of live action, like mixing drinks in front of customers, so you always need star quality. I advise junior bartenders to pay attention to both the ser- vice and the drinks. A more specific tip would be to try to grasp each customer’s disposition and treat them accordingly; sometimes politely, sometimes wittily. Kim Sun-Kyung’S Specialty drinKS Praha Jaro It means “spring in Prague” in Czech, and is made using Becherovka, a traditional Czech liquor. I’m trying to capture the flavor of the culture and air of different countries in the renewed cocktails, to ft the customers’ tastes. Praha Jaro’s motif is the historical Prague Spring of 1968. As customers are turning to spirits with lower alcohol percentages and seeking out a healthier drinking culture, I’ve put in a lot of thought into choosing a cocktail base accordingly. For this reason, I looked to Becherovka, the traditional Czech health-boosting spirit, and Jägermeister, a German traditional spirit made from a variety of herbs and spices. Groove Korea: How is Itaewon different from other places where you have worked before? Jeong Ho-bin: As we all know, Itaewon is known to be the best place to find locals mix- ing with people from all around the world. I think Itaewon’s biggest strength is that it’s often one of the first neighborhoods to embrace the new- est trends in Seoul. What makes Mute stand out from other clubs? It’s hard to pinpoint, really: The cool interior design, with its unique DJ booth shaped like a bird cage; the title parties with techno, funky house, deep house and techno house music that captures the characters of the resident DJs; and guest parties where we invite famous local and foreign artists are all things that come to mind. We get a lot of great feedback from customers on our cocktails and overall drink menu — good drinks really boost the mood. I also think it’s our friendly bar staff here who make the drinks, and the overall service of the club. You have worked at both bars and clubs. What the charm of clubs? Bars and clubs have their own respective charms. A big characteristic of clubs is that they are places that are a lot more open than bars. The mood, music and cocktails let people enjoy themselves freely and forget about their stressful week. A club is also a place where anybody can be in the spotlight. I think that’s their most fun- damental charm. What do you like most about being a bar- tender? Bartending is one of those jobs that has infinite possibilities. People who haven’t experienced it themselves wouldn’t know, but it’s a job where you get to make everyone feel happier and more welcomed, be it at a bar or at a club, through a cocktail or some other service, by treating peo- ple like a friends and sometimes family. I think this is what the charm of this job comes from. If you want to know more about being a bartender or about cocktails, I recommend you to visit my blog: m.blog.naver.com/ghqlsdl1. Jeong Ho-bin’s specialty drinks Rings of Saturn This cocktail is made with Irish whiskey as the base and has a unique visual that reminds you of the rings of Saturn. But as a person who mixes and creates a variety of cocktails, I have so many that I want to recommend. Also, each person has his or her own preferences, so each would have different cocktails that appeal to them. For this reason, I would recommend that all readers explore and try cocktails from many different areas, bars and bartenders, and fnd the one that suits them best. Interview with Jeong Ho-bin, Club Mute Praha Jaro Glam Lounge Rings of Saturn Club Mute