After being injured in the Marine Corps, Steve Schneider turned his goals to becoming a rock star bartender and eventual bar manager at Employees Only, winner of 2011 World's Best Cocktail Bar Award. Entering himself in bartending competitions around the world, Schneider quickly made a name for himself as one of the most innovative bartenders in the world. In 2015, he received the award for Bartender of the Year at the Nightlife & Bar awards. Schneider is currently in Singapore where they are opening up another Employees Only location.
Steve Carpentieri aka Carpi is a former VP of Citi Group. He opened Dunville's, a corner restaurant and bar, to create a spot catering to both the working class and the white-collar communities of Westport, CT. With the changing landscape of the economy, the industry, and the town, Dunvilles went from being the "it" bar in town to a place barely staying afloat. After 18 years of ownership, with both his business and his personal life struggling, Carpi's dream of running a bar in his hometown is in jeopardy and he must decide what he is willing to do to save it, or if it is time pack it up and close the neighborhood staple for good.
Jim Meehan honed his skills behind the bar at Five Points. He went on to become one of the head bartenders at Danny Meyer's Gramercy Tavern, as well as one of the influential bartenders at the Pegu Club. Jim then went on to open the trailblazing cocktail den PDT (Please Don't Tell). PDT is known around the world and has received numerous awards and accolades, including the 2012 James Beard Award for "Outstanding Bar Program." Jim published The PDT Cocktail Book, which sold out its first run in less than a month, solidifying Meehan's influence in cocktail culture, within New York City and beyond. He is universally considered a leader in the cocktail industry.
Dale DeGroff or "King Cocktail," as he is known in the industry, is the founding father of modern mixology. DeGroff is credited with reviving and reinventing the profession of bartending and pioneering a gourmet approach to recreating the great classic cocktails. He is a master mixologist who developed his techniques behind the bar at several notable establishments, including the Rainbow Room in the 1980s. DeGroff is the author of two award-winning books, The Essential Cocktail and The Craft of the Cocktail. He has received many awards including the James Beard Award for Outstanding Wine & Spirits Professional, the Lifetime Achievement Award from Nightclub & Bar Magazine, Tales of the Cocktail Helen David Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Cheers Beverage Industry Innovator of the Year. Dale also founded the Museum of the American Cocktail in New Orleans.
Charlotte Voisey is an expert British mixologist, and a legend in bartending circles who has created drinks and run bars in cities as far flung as Barcelona, Buenos Aires and London and the New York. Charlotte opened Apartment 195 on the King's Road in London, which was promptly named London's Bar of the Year, and shortly afterwards Charlotte herself was rewarded with the coveted title of UK Bartender of the Year. Charlotte was recently awarded the silver medal at the World Female Bartender championships in Italy. She is currently the Ambassador for the entire William Grant & Sons portfolio.
Dushan Zaric is the cocktail mastermind behind the world-famous New York City bars, Employees Only and Macao Trading Company. He is widely recognized as an industry leader and a pioneer in craft bartending. His innovative work behind the bar has revolutionized the art of the cocktail, winning Employees Only the high award of "Best Cocktail Bar in the World" at Tales of the Cocktail. Dushan is the co-author of two books "You Didn't Hear It From Us: Two Bartenders Serve Women the Truth about Men, Making an Impression and Getting what you Want" and "Speakeasy - Classic Cocktails re-imagined by New York's Employees Only Bar," which features Employees Only Cocktails and has received numerous acclaims including being listed in the To 10 Cookbooks by New York magazine.
Julie Reiner has been elevating the state of mixology in New York for the last decade with the openings of several world-renowned establishments including the Flatiron Lounge, Pegu Club and Clover Club. She began her career in the cocktail lounges of San Francisco and made her way to New York City in 1997 where she caught the interest of King Cocktail himself, Dale DeGroff, who has been a mentor to her since then. Julie's story and her recipes have been featured in a variety of publications including The New York Times, Esquire, Gourmet Magazine, and Bon Appetit.
Sasha Petroske made his mark in 2000 by opening New York City's now legendary Milk & Honey, which played an important part in helping to revive the once-lost art of classic cocktails and mixology. Since then, Sasha has helped launch many craft cocktail establishments including Dutch Kills, Little Branch and The Varnish. He has been recognized internationally for b eing a guiding force in the modern cocktail industry. Sasha has been written about in major publications around the world for his contributions, including New York Magazine naming him one of the most influential New Yorkers.