How did you get the job?
I was recommended by a friend who had just joined the team and I was able to join the staff, meet and exceed the expectation of our customers and management staff at Pineapple grill.
What is your favorite spirit to work with? What is the last drink you made with it?
Tequila. Margarita Top Shelf of course.
What is the last incredible beer you have had?
I enjoy our Maui Brewing Co. Beers especially the Bikini Blonde. It is refreshing and smooth.
If you could change one thing about the drinks business on Maui what would it be?
I would change the rules about dance floors, so that more people can dance to and enjoy music when they are in an establishment that may not have a permit and applicable dance floor.
Where is your favorite Happy Hour?
Pineapple Grill has a happy hour on drinks everyday 2:30-5:30pm. $2 off tap beers, 25% off wine by the glass and we feature drinks with Svedka Vodka for $4.
What is your bar’s signature?
Alii Mai Tai – made with fresh squeezed lime, orgeat syrup, orange curacao, Bacardi, guava and pineapple juice, dark rum and 151 rum.
What is YOUR drink?
Da Faisky Whiskey! Whiskey, peach syrup, carmelized Maui Gold Pineapple, fresh squeezed lemon and lime, pineapple juice- all shaken tableside in a mason jar by your server.
When you are making a cocktail what is the most important thing?
Consistency, taste, and preparation along with fresh ingredients.
Let’s say you’re pitching an investor who wants you to open your ultimate bar. What is your concept?
Sports Bar but mainly pool tables, darts, foosball etc, and lots of TV’s with all the sports you can get! Maui really needs a great pool hall!
What are your greatest influences outside of the drink industry?
Any and all forms of music.
What is the most recent new liquor you have tried and what was your impression of it?
Jack Daniel’s Honey. Very good, tasty and different. It opens up many possibilities for exciting drinks!
What are your regulars like?
Wonderful! Most of my regulars I pretty much have all of their preferences memorized which is why they return. We are like family here, staff and customers.
What characteristics should a good bartender possess? Why are you one?
Efficiency, attitude and consistency. Ability to make someone’s bad day turn around! I am one because I am always having fun and NEVER showing it if I’m busy.
PINEAPPLE GRILL HAPPY HOUR – Daily. Get your day going with $3-$4 draft beers, $4 Signature Pineapple Grill Cocktail, $4 select Svedka Vodka drinks, and $5.50 Svedka Vodka specialty cocktails. 2:30-5:30pm. Pineapple Grill, (200 Kapalua Drive, Kapalua); 808-669-9600; http://www.pineapplekapalua.com/
About Jen Russo
I write lifestyle and culinary columns for MauiTime. I love being a Maui girl and adore my big family. Dedicated food taster, blogger, internet fanatic, and Maui and Hawaii specialist.