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December 2020

On Wednesday, December 16th, Legendary club Jazid re-opened its doors after almost three years of renovations. New Owner and Creative Director, Arnaud Nicolas, kept in mind the iconic venue’s festive spirit and musical roots when transforming the downstairs 1st level Lounge Bar into an alluring and mysterious Garden of Eden. The decadent golden mirrors, marble bars, and gorgeous cherry blossom flowers, inspired by Baroque, Renaissance, and 1970s give the space an aura that is both classic and yet timeless. Ascend the stairs to the 2nd level Social Club where Gatsby black and gold accents the chic crystal chandeliers. Rest comfortably on the beautiful teal leather couches that are perfect for guests to enjoy the hottest new music and opulent bottle service until the sun rises.

“I wanted to create a place where guests can have the time of their lives,” explained Nicolas.  As a hospitality developer who previously created and sold two successful nightlife concepts in France (including the award-winning Klubb), Nicolas’s experience and expertise gives guests an unforgettable night out and allows Jazid to thrive outside of trends.

Jazid stands out as a space full of originality. Eccentricities and curiosities are the winning formulae for an exceptional evening. Like its bold, eye-catching design, this is not a quiet spot for the reserved or the timid. During Jazid’s re-opening, friends and family enjoyed the festive party vibes and the jaw-dropping performers and entertainers. They delighted in the eye-catching craft cocktails and premium champagnes. They also had a preview of the tantalizing bar bites menu. 

Located at 1342 Washington Ave, Miami Beach, FL 33139, Jazid is now open to the public from Wednesday through Saturday from 7 p.m. to late in the evening. The 1st and 2nd floors, perfect for any special occasion, will be available for private events, birthdays, and buyouts. At Jazid, anything goes with wild entertainment, glorious staff uniforms, and the best music from a rotating line-up of top DJs and live bands.

WEBSITE www.Jazidclub.com

FACEBOOK /jazidmiamibeach/

INSTAGRAM @jazidmiamibeach 

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CHRISTIAN DELPECH, originally from Buenos Aires, is a true superstar and one of the most innovative and dynamic flair bartending champions in Miami. Winning more than 19 world championships and over 50 first-places in international competitions in more than 40 countries around the world, he’s a living legend, known for his highly original, dexterous showmanship and influential impact upon a new generation of up-and-coming bartenders. We are proud to offer this exclusive interview as part of our National Bartender Day celebration. 

Christian is currently teaching flair technique through online platforms, workshops and special events.  You can also watch him work his magic behind the bar at Spanglish and Sweet liberty. 

 

When did your passion for bartending start? 

A friend of mine introduced me to bartending when I was 17 years old and working in a pub.  I didn’t even drink alcohol at the time and didn’t know how to make any cocktails.  I was just pouring mixed drinks back then.  I wanted to learn more so I enrolled in a bartending school and that’s when I started to fall in love with bartending.
 

How did you come across flair bartending?

When I was working at my first job, I saw the movie “Cocktail” and I fell for flair bartending instantly. 

Did you come up with these tricks on your own or study other people?

When I started flair bartending, it wasn’t popular in Argentina.  In fact, I didn’t know anybody that did it at that time.  So I learned all the moves from the movie “Cocktail.”  Then I found out, years later, about flair competitions in the US, so I got some videos (VHS at the time) from the world championships and immediately started to practice new techniques from the video and came up with my own moves and style.  I learned tricks related to juggling, contact, dancing, martial arts, and magic sleight-of-hand.  After becoming a pro and world champion, I continued to improve on my own tricks and introduce more ideas.
 
WhatsApp Image 2020 12 04 at 2.47.48 PMWhat has been the most memorable experience?
I’ve competed, judged, and performed in over 40 countries, so it’s very hard to name a single one, but probably the one that made me a world champion for the first time: the Pro Division, Legends of Bartending in Las Vegas in 2001. That’s a great memory!
 

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?

That I was a magician once. I worked doing magic in Ibiza going from table to table. I learned magic from the best magicians in Spain.
 
 

What’s your favorite flair bartending competition and why?

It no longer exists but my favorite was Legends of Bartending in Las Vegas because it was the most technical flair bartending competition ever.  There were four different rounds: Pour Test (accuracy), Speed, Working Flair, and Exhibition Flair.  The one who scored the highest in all combined was crowned World Champion.  The competition was invitation-only, with champions from all over the world.  You really had to train for this one, in all the different aspects.  Also, it was in Las Vegas! 
 

In your opinion, what makes a good bartender?

A good bartender maintains an ideal balance between hospitality/customer service, knowledge, technique, and speed (when needed) while also having the ability to empathize with the guest.
 

What can you tell us about your new phase as an online educator? How did you initially get involved?WhatsApp Image 2020 12 04 at 2.47.49 PM 1

Well, I’ve been training bartenders for two decades, but only recently on social media.  I love to teach people who have a strong desire to learn and if someone goes to your page, YouTube channel, or buys your training videos, it’s because they’re genuinely interested in learning from you.  That is an inspirational fuel for teaching.
 

What is your advice to novice bartenders wanting to learn flair bartending?

It all depends on what your goal is.  For instance, if you want to learn working flair (to me, that’s the most useful ability) to add skills to your bartending job, my advice is to start with the basic moves, make them very solid and learn moves that you’re going to be able to use/perform in that environment specifically.
If you’d like to become a competitor, then you would have to step it up a notch and train hours a day to learn faster, although the concept is the same, solid base and then train smart.  Often people want to know how long it takes to learn flair and I always answer with another question: how bad do you want it?
 

Where do you see yourself next?

I’d like to continue in education, training for sure, but at one point I’d like to explore the other side of the bar, which is brand ambassadorship.  If it’s related to education, all the better.
 

Where can we follow your journey?

 

CHRISTIAN DELPECH WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY 

1st place 2000 Quest for the best Rookie division Orlando – USA

1st place individual 2001 Legends of bartending 3 Las Vegas – USA

1st place individual 2001 Grand Cayman Masters 1 Cayman Islands

1st place tandem 2001 Grand Cayman Masters 1 Cayman Islands

2nd place 2001 Quest for the best – Pro division Orlando – USA

1st place 2001 Road House Grand Final London England

1st place individual 2002 Legends of bartending 4 Las Vegas – USA

1st place Tandem 2002 Legends of bartending 4 Las Vegas – USA

3rd place 2002 WBC – Pro division Orlando – USA

1st place 2002 Grand Cayman Masters 2 Cayman Islands

3rd place 2002 Road House Grand Final London – England

1st place 2003 Legends of Bartending 5 Las Vegas – USA

1st place 2003 WFBC – Pro Division Orlando – USA

1st place overall individual 2003 Triple Challenge Panama City – USA

1st place tandem 2003 Triple Challenge Panama City – USA

1st place 2003 Road House Grand Final London – England

1st place 2004 Legends of bartending 6 Las Vegas – USA

2nd place tandem 2004 King of The Ring 1 Las Vegas – USA

1st place 2004 Quest for the Best – Pro division Orlando – USA

2nd place 2004 IBA Finals Las Vegas – USA

1st place 2004 Road House Grand Final London – England

2nd place 2005 King of the Ring 2 Las Vegas – USA

2nd place 2005 IBA Helsinki Finland

1st Place 2006 King of the Ring 3 (aka-UFBC) Las Vegas – USA

3rd Place 2006 Road House Grand Finals London – UK

1st place 2007 UFBC 2 (a.k.a. King Of The Ring 4) Las Vegas – USA

1st place 2007 Skyy Global Challenge Grand Finals Montecarlo – Monaco

6th place 2007 Bacardi Pro Flair Moscow – Russia

2nd place 2007 Quest for the Best Orlando – Florida – USA

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Certified Sommelier Dennis Conger has an incredible new wine course that is worth celebrating. Wine Educator Dennis Conger’s D. Lobo Wine Education, a  program designed for wine novices, experts, and aficionados, teaches students the history, culture, and geography of wine while also offering applicable skills to those who work in the hospitality industry. Using his own experience and passion for wine, Dennis’s course boasts a personal touch that aims to strengthen Miami’s wine community and bolster the evolving industry. Unlike other wine programs, D.  Lobo Wine Education adapts to the needs of its diverse clientele as well as guides and mentors its students during and after they have taken the fantastic course. 

How did you get started in the Hospitality Industry?

In Spain, being a part of the hospitality industry is almost like a tradition in the family. You’re just following what your father did, what your uncle did, and what your grandfather did. It’s a career tradition inside of the family. My family and I always loved to go out and have dinner. Wine was the drink of choice for my mother. As far as I can remember, for example, when I went to my grandparent’s house, my grandmother always had a bottle of wine on the table, waiting for my grandfather and uncles. They would have a quick lunch, have three or four glasses of wine, and then go back to work happy, in a good mood. That’s just part of the culture and tradition in Spain.

How is the hospitality industry different in Spain than in the U.S.?

It’s not like in the United States where if you’re a waiter or a sommelier you can make really good money because you’re a tip-based employee. Over there, it’s one of the toughest jobs. Long hours, maybe one day off out of the week, five or six doubles…You don’t get a table gratuity. We don’t have that system. Spain is huge in gastronomy. It is huge in hospitality, the restaurant, and the hotel industry. There are tons of bars and restaurants on one block. Every family has a bar or restaurant that they have been going to for decades, in some cases, centuries. The oldest restaurant in the world is in Madrid. 

What inspired your move from Spain to the U.S.?

I was living back and forth between Thailand and Spain. I moved away from the restaurant business and got into the importation business. I would sell clothes, art, furniture, anything that I could get my hands on and make money from it. My parents thought about moving to Miami and brought the idea to me. Spain was falling into an economic crisis from 2006 to 2010. We all decided to come to Miami and start a new life. I fell in love with the city because it was a city evolving when it comes to gastronomy. A few years after I got here, a lot of celebrity chefs were starting to come here from New York, Washington, and Chicago. Then, Wynwood started developing and making a nice neighborhood with a nice ambiance of art. It was very trendy and modern. There was a fusion of all types of cultures and cuisines. I fell in love with that. I’m here today after 10 years. 

What was your journey as a sommelier?IMG 2418

I have always had a strong wine knowledge because I have always worked at high-end, upscale, fine dining restaurants. In these restaurants, you needed to know a lot about wines because these places had an extensive wine list or the guests required knowledge from the staff when it came to recommendations. In 2012, I joined a Spanish company called 100 Montaditos. It’s like fast food, an upscale concept with tapas and little sandwiches. I was a corporate manager. I got involved with wine at that point and little by little I found myself in the wine world. 

What are some key characteristics of being a sommelier? Discuss your role as a sommelier. 

I’m not just a sommelier. I am also a Wine Educator. I try to inspire upcoming sommeliers or just someone who wants to discover new wines. There are many knowledgeable people who keep their knowledge for themselves. They help themselves but they don’t help the industry. It’s a relationship. I build relationships with my clients and I keep in touch with them. I ask if they have questions and if they’re using what they learned in the class. The perfect or a professional sommelier should know that it is not about selling a specific wine or selling a glass of wine to make money. In my opinion, wine is the most perfect representation of a country, a region, and most importantly, the people who have lived and worked the land for centuries. These people are the ones who create the magic and transform those grapes into an amazing juice that you get to enjoy later with your family. For me, recommending or suggesting a wine to a table of guests is like taking them on a journey. Forget about how their day was and make them travel to the region and talk about not just the wine, but the history and culture of the region. That’s what I try to do. I try to take them on a journey and find the perfect wine that suits them, that will pair perfectly with their dinner, and that might make them say, “This is my favorite wine.” 

Tell us about D. Lobo Wine Education in your own words. 

We focus on providing excellent wine education. Our program is more than just a class or a course. It is full guidance through your career. It is mentorship. Miami was, and still is, a city that is evolving in gastronomy and wine. When you compare it to the wine world in New York, Washington, Chicago, and San Francisco, Miami is behind. These are much older cities that have a lot more culture. Here, I had trouble finding guidance and mentorship. D. Lobo Wine Education is a full mentorship that will guide you through the journey. 

How do you distinguish yourself from the other wine courses? What do you offer that is different? How is your program more personalized?

When you join these wine worldwide famous organizations, they just prepare you for an exam. You cannot call your teacher at one in the morning and say, “Hey, I have an exam tomorrow” or “I just got out of work and I have this question”. It’s hard to have that guidance and mentorship and this is what D. Lobo Wine Education offers. You can text us or call us at any time. We also work with what works for you. For example, I had a client who just joined a new restaurant and it’s a Steakhouse. My course starts with Burgundy, Bordeaux, Tuscany, and Piamonte and then we go on from there. My client said that he didn’t see a lot of those wines on the menu and that he was at an American Steakhouse in North Carolina. I started with California wine instead which wasn’t part of the course. I added it for him and gave him a class on the big wines of Napa Valley and introduced that because that is what was going to work for him. That’s what he needed to know to recuperate the money he invested in his education. I adapt to my client. You don’t see that in any other wine program. 

What else can be expected from these classes?

The classes include basic information about the most important regions and wines that you really need to know. In more advanced classes, we go through the regions of France, Italy, Spain, California. If you’re in Miami, we also go through tasting the wines, which is an additional charge. If it’s a virtual course, I send the client the list and we do virtual tastings. I strongly believe that you can love to read and learn, but when you bring in wines and start tasting as you’re learning, it’s more exciting and you get a better feeling of what the wine is. You’re not just listening, you’re living in the moment and experiencing the wine yourself. It is not just a class or a course about wine. I am teaching you how to sell the wine. I am teaching you what sells. I am strong in selling emotion and feelings. Create desire. I teach you to put all your passion and love into this and that is what will make you money. Sell history. Sell the emotions. My clients constantly receive information so they can keep training. Learning never ends. 

What’s a significant goal of yours?

My number one goal is to be able to educate people so they can earn a living. I want to motivate them and allow them to be financially stable. I want them to set goals and make more money every year to provide for themselves and their families. It’s all about creating a bigger and better industry. 

To contact Dennis Conger or to take his wonderful class:

Follow Dennis on Instagram @D.lobo_wine_education and @DennisCongerSomm.  

Website: Dlobowines.com

*Classes start at $65.00 and the Introductory Course (comprising 4-6 classes) start at $300.00.

Photos Courtesy of Dennis Corgen

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On Monday, November 16th Moët Hennessy’s Volcán De Mi Tierra unveiled its new hand-crafted Tequila, Volcán Reposado. Launched in 2017, Volcán De Mi Tierra became Moët Hennessy’s first Tequila, thus beginning a beautiful legacy, a part of which Volcán Reposado has recently become. Volcán De Mi Tierra created the new Reposado in collaboration with the prominent Gallardo family in Jalisco, who connects the product to its Mexican roots and brings recognition, resources, and respect to the new spirit. Crafted with intention, teamwork, and, above all, heart, this new Reposado is a stand out addition to an already impressive collection. The Volcán De Mi Tierra is known for its mantra of “100% Heart.” This mantra represents an emphasis on the “heart, care, and craftsmanship that is applied to each step of the deeply interconnected process of creating each and every bottle of Volcán Tequila.” The 100% Heart also reveals an appreciation for the “passion, dedication and commitment of each member of the Volcán family.” These key members include the growers in the agave fields, the distillery team, the Gallardo family, and the Volcán de mi Tierra brand team.

The Volcán Reposado also accompanies the Volcán Blanco and Cristalino Expressions, joining the prestigious Volcán De Mi Tierra assortment of super-premium Tequila. In addition to encapsulating the brand values of innovation, tradition, and integrity, this new expression boasts a flavorful union of agave, terroir, and wood. Volcán Reposado comes from 100% blue agave from the highlands of Jalisco. Its rich flavor is free of additives and each bottle contains a liquor that was aged for 135 days in American and European oak casks which distinguishes it from other brands. Both the Gallardo family and the Volcán brand team contributed their commitment and hard work to turn this project of passion and dedication into a product fit for joyous consumption.  

When enjoying the Volcán Reposado, drink it neat or with a large ice cube. Get Volcán Reposado for casual events, celebrations, or other special occasions at $55.00.  It is now finally available in Florida to taste at fine restaurants, bars, and fine retailers. For more updates and information, visit www.volcan.com or follow @volcantequila on Instagram.

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