Mixologist: His initial plan was to study catering but the fun in the mixology class saw him change his mind. 11 years later, Simon Akora has no regrets.
What do you do?
I am a mixologist.
Where did you learn to mix cocktails from?
I went for training in catering at International institute of Management Studies in Zimbabwe, only to be amazed by the bartending class. The way they enjoyed mixing different drinks prompted me to change and major in mixology.
How much do you charge to mix cocktails at a function?
It depends on the number of people expected to attend and how long it might take as well as the number of cocktails to be served. Charges are standard for either corporate or home events/weddings but also negotiable.
What inspired you to start doing this job?
My inspiration started in my teenage years. We had a bartender in the neighbourhood who was always praising his job and seemed less stressed yet successful. He used to say my job is a happy job and I deal with happy people, so I thought this was the kind of job I needed to do when I grow up.
Which places have you worked at so far?
My career started at Café Harare, Zimbabwe, Le Chateau Belgian Restaurant, Club Rouge, Cayenne Restaurant and Lounge, Bartender’s Forum Uganda, Sky Lounge, Kisementi and Bubbles O’Learys where I am now.
For how long have you been doing this?
I have been in hospitality for about 11 years.
What have you achieved out of it?
I have achieved quite a lot, ranging from personal success, excellence, and exposure. Although it has its ups and lows like any career, I still don’t regret joining mixology.
What are the different types of cocktails you can mix?
I do a whole range of cocktails, from the classics, fizzes, fusions, punches, specialty shots, frozen cocktails and mocktails.
What steps can one take to make a cocktail?
Cocktails are easy to make but one common mistake bartenders make is taking shortcuts, like the classics. Once an ingredient is missing it affects the final taste. And you also need to adhere to the formula used to produce a cocktail. If it is shaken, shake it, if muddled, do that.
How can one get in touch with you in case they need your services?
You can reach me on 0775115104, Facebook: Akora Simon Peter, and Instagram: Akora Peter.
Can you also make a cocktail for people who don’t drink alcohol?
Yeah, I can and lots of them, but we call them mocktails.
What do you use when making cocktails?
For starters, you need the appropriate glassware, basic tools of trade (shakers, muddler, blender, tongs, lots of ice), some fresh juices, basic liquor (spirits) and fresh fruits. Then you are good to go.