Bartender of the week- Crissen Ritchey
Name: Crissen Ritchey
Bar: Breathe Cocktail Lounge
Where are you from? Originally Michigan, but I’ve traveled and bartended all over the U.S. I stayed pretty stationary in Jonesboro, Arkansas, for three years before relocating to Greensboro a few months ago.
How long have you been bartending? 16 years
How did you become a bartender? I moved away from home and struggled to get by working a part-time job. Having bartended at a younger age, my mom suggested I start serving because I had the personality for it. Worked as a cocktail waitress for about six months and saw an opening for a bartender. That’s where the journey began.
What do you enjoy about bartending? I enjoy meeting new people and hearing their stories.
What’s your favorite drink to make? A smoked Old Fashioned. When you bust out the blow torch, people are always amazed.
What’s your favorite drink to drink? Jameson, neat.
What would you recommend as an after-dinner drink? The Vesper; It’s the martini James Bond orders in Casino Royale. I like the story behind it and how, really, it is a very versatile drink, as it can be taken alone, or any time during a meal. Plus, the drink was created by a guy with a License to Kill, so you know it’s got to be awesome!
What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen while bartending? We were having an Emo night and knew it was going to be super busy, so we moved all the tables to the back room. During clean up, I noticed one of the tables was missing. Someone somehow managed to take an entire table and sneak it out the back door of the back room and down a flight of icy stairs.
What’s the best/biggest tip you’ve ever gotten? A guy came into the pub on a busy Friday night and ordered 50 jager bombs. It shocked me, but he clearly wanted to buy a round for the bar basically. Anyway, he ended up buying 100 overall and tipped $250.