Mixologist Shawn Barker from The Patio on Lamont, a newly-minted Pacific Beach restaurant which replaced the Lamont St Grill, shares some of his personal cocktail culture with Eater San Diego.
Where do you go for an after-shift drink?
It depends what we feel like. For a craft cocktail I go to either Craft and Commerce or Noble Experiment, the staff if very knowledgeable and great to talk to. Bartending is a mentor/apprentice type of profession and if I can learn something to improve my skills while relaxing, a craft cocktail bar is the place to go. If I want to cozy up to a nice glass of whiskey at the end of my shift, my favorite spot is the Aero Club, by far the best whiskey selection in San Diego.
Have any advice on how to prevent or cure a hangover?
The bartender's hangover guide is all about preparation. We preach drinking responsibly, but you got to practice for those big games. First, never go out for a night of drinking on an empty stomach or at least eat while you're out. Next is water, after one or two drinks, have a glass of water, it will help you in the long run.
Don't mix your alcohols. Stay with one type of alcohol throughout the night: wine, beer, or alcohol. Last is sugar; try to stay away from sugar (sugared mixers, energy drinks, fruit juices) that is what really jump starts a hangover.
What's your favorite hair of the dog cocktail?
My two favorite breakfast cocktails are classics: the Bellini and the Hemingway Daiquiri. Both are simple, but also hard to find a bar that does them right. The Bellini should be made with prosecco and a white peach puree or peach nectar, not peach schnapps. The Hemingway Daiquiri is an old drink that used to be called a Papa Doble — rum, maraschino liqueur, lime juice, and fresh grapefruit. Both are great for early consumption.
Any bar horror stories?
Early in my career I witnessed a guest order a flaming shot; when he took it he didn't blow out the flame and it dropped all over his polyester pants, creating hundreds of burn holes. If you're going to drink a cocktail that is on fire, blow out the flame first! Scary moment, but we laughed about it for quite some time. That was the last time anybody served a flaming drink at that bar again.
· The Patio on Lamont Preview, A First Look [EatSD]
· The Patio on Lamont [Official Website]