WHAT DO YOU DO AND HOW DID YOU GET HERE?
EZ: I am the Co-Founder of Bar Lab Consullting and Managing Partner of the Broken Shaker, Miami Beach. I came to New York City with $220 in my pocket. I started as a dishwasher at the Plaza Hotel & from there I discovered my love and my passion for the industry.
GO: Co-Founder of Bar Lab and Managing Partner of the Broken Shaker. I got here by working my ass off since I was 15 and held every position in F&B from barback to dishwasher and cook etc.
WHAT MAKES THE PERFECT DRINKING EXPERIENCE?
EZ: A lot of people can make a great cocktail, but not a lot of people get the overall picture. I'm all about the total vibe, (the bartender, the lighting, the music) and most important, "don't try too hard!"
GO: Friends, good music, quality spirits and a hospitable host (bartender).
WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN THE PERFECT COCKTAIL?
EZ: Creativity & balance.
GO: There are many things like fresh ingredients, good spirits, technique, glassware, but the most important is BALANCE.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST INSPIRATION AND WHY?
EZ: My wife and my daughter, the people that surround me. My wife is a fountain of ideas and has traveled the world and still can't wait to discover more. My daughter, well just because she makes my heart warm & makes me laugh and gives me so much joy every minute.
GO: Growing up in Colombia and Hawaii, it give me two very different perspectives on life.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE HOTEL IN THE WORLD?
EZ: I love the Moorings in Isla Morada, FL. It's very chic, private, simple and just an hour and a half drive from Miami Beach.
GO: Tavarua Island Resort in Fiji.
WHERE WILL YOU BE ON YOUR NEXT DAY OFF?
EZ: Hopefully with my daughter eating in a dim sum restaurant.
GO: At the beach surfing or paddleboarding and enjoying the sun.
CAREER ANECDOTE YOU'D LIKE TO SHARE?
EZ: I have taken care of a lot of high-profile celebrities in my bartending career. One of the only times I was impressed was when this kid came to my bar and asked me if he could sit down at a table, I told him: "yes of course man, not a problem." Ten minutes later there were 5 security guards surrounding the table & Bill Gates showed up, sitting down with this kid talking business. I was very impressed by it. It doesn't matter how much money or power you have, you can always learn from other people.
GO: Making a vegetarian meal for Adam Yauch from the Beastie Boys at the Tibet Freedom Concert in San Francisco, 1996.
WHAT DO YOU SEE FOR THE FUTURE OF BARS AND COCKTAILS?
EZ: They will all start or keep sourcing local & organic ingredients and/or grow their own supply of ingredients. This keeps the product fresh & interesting.
GO: Anyone can make great cocktails but it all comes down to hospitality. Drinking is meant to be fun and enjoyable and cocktails bars should be as well.
WHICH CITY OR COUNTRY'S BARS ARE YOU MOST IMPRESSED WITH?
EZ: Los Angeles!!! It's fun, it's not snobby, and the people behind it are really cool.
GO: Portland has some great bars and an awesome cocktail scene… all I can say is: Vegan Strip clubs with proper cocktails.
IF YOU COULD MAKE A COCKTAIL FOR ANYONE DEAD OR ALIVE, WHO WOULD IT BE?
EZ: Lol.... my soccer team from Israel, Maccabi Tel Aviv & the Dalai Lama.
GO: Kurt Cobain, he revolutionized the music industry. And probably something with bourbon or rye whiskey.
WHAT'S YOUR DREAM JOB?
EZ: To do what I do, but to grow with it.
GO: Owning a hotel/bar on the beach in Padang Padang, Bali.