Look at You, Bartender: Frederic Yarm, Russell House Tavern, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
Frederic Yarm, Russell House Tavern, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA
During my high school years, I was a camp counselor at a day camp which has proven quite helpful to my job as an adult babysitter at the bar. At the school itself, it was probably not all the science, math, and English classes I took, but the pottery and photography classes that taught me to open my mind and not worry about grades as much as personal satisfaction in the art and craft.
What’s your favorite non-bartender-related book?
AndréBreton’s Nadja which broadened the way I looked at the world. I have given that book out as a gift about as muchas my previous favorite, Richard Fariña’s Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up to Me.
What do you like to drink after a long, hard shift?
Often an India Pale Ale of some sort, although I will go for other beer styles if I have not tried that beer before.
Name a specific brand-name spirit that you think is the best in its category:
Bénédictine as an herbal liqueur. It seems like it was the bartender’s ketchup long before St. Germain stole theshow.
What’s your favorite non-alcoholic drink?
Coffee black, unsweetened, and warm.
If you were an animal, what kind of animal would you be?
If it wasn’t a spoiled house catlike my own four, it would have to be a Cambridge rabbit. At various parts of town including the MIT campus, the adults run around, play, eat, and multiply almost carefree in a sheltered environment that is free from predators.
Tell us something that very few people know about you:
Despite being an extrovert behind the bar and on social media, my previous career as a biochemist had me quite comfortable as a major introvert.
Wanna add something?
While home on summer break in college, my mom encouraged me to respond to a bartender-needed newspaper ad at a place called Helwig’s in Milford, Connecticut. Despite never having been in a bar before (I was under 21), not knowing much about booze other than cheap beer, and in the end not getting the job, I remembered her advice that bartending was a job that never falls out of fashion. Which is amusing since she was rather against drinking.