In an effort to ensure that more voices in the bar community will be heard, it has been decided that this column should rotate, and I couldn’t agree more. I look forward to hearing what everyone else has to say, and to learning from their collected perspectives. I am so thankful to have been given the chance to have a voice in this amazing community, and I can’t wait to read what comes next!
With thanks and admiration, there are a few things I wish to remind not only myself, but the entire bar-tending community of, before I go…
- This city is full of strong players, who are growing wiser and stronger at their craft by the day. I hope for all of you working in the Yangon hospitality industry, that you are proud of what you do, and how you represent your city’s ability to welcome people, from both near and far, to feel at home and be entertained here. It is an important roll (though some are not yet understanding of that) so believe in your talents and the big things you are capable of, for yourselves and for your city.
- Some of the big competitions are coming around, and more will come in the future. You can’t win them all… try anyway! You will learn by leaps and bounds through the process, and you will expand your network beyond Yangon. Remember that even the exposure of these competitions can quickly advance your career. With that being said, learn to take a loss with grace. Thank the brand that gave you the opportunity, thank the competitors that challenged you, thank the guests who cheered for you, congratulate the winner, and hold your head high into the next big comp. Never let a win go to your head, and never let a loss go to your heart.
- Learn together. Regardless of where you work. Join together and share ideas. Inspire one another and support each other like a big family. You will go further together than you can on your own.
Thank you all for hearing me, and for allowing me to grow in this beautiful city. It has been a great year, and I truly look forward to the future. I invite you all to come around and share a drink with me at Union, and I’ll surely be around for a drink or two with you.
MYANMORE Awards Winner and Spirits Ambassador of the Year 2018 Jen Queen is the bar manager for restaurant and bar group 57-BELOW, and mixes the cocktails at Union Bar and Grill. She is an expert in her field and the only Master Mescalier in Yangon and quite possibly the only one in Southeast Asia.