Get to know: Evangeline Malley

Charli Tomney | 25/05/2022

Name: Evangeline Malley
Bar Name: Jake's Bar and Still Room
Nickname: Stevie 
Pronouns: She/they
Job Title: Bartender 

Key Skills: Flavour pairings and consistency.  I push consistency throughout all my pours aiming to produce well balanced, tasty drinks which not only appeal by the taste but also by the appearance and general aesthetic of the drink. Additionally I believe that I compliment the existing dynamic of personalities at Jake’s Bar, bringing a fun yet organised vibe, one of my key skills is the ability to adapt to situations and new workplaces alongside the ability to get along with most people I meet, I believe this to be one of the fundamentals of being a successful and respected bartender.

How long have you worked at Jake’s Bar?

Since October 2021, so coming close to 6 months

Favourite drink?

My favourite drink is definitely a Singapore Sling, I really appreciate the overall balance the drink has as well as its simplistic and neat appearance. In my mind it marries a perfect amount of sweetness and sourness, making it a refreshing and boozy highball. It’s rare to find a cocktail which uses contrasting flavours which each bring a unique and important element to a drink. Furthermore, I love cocktails that hold a strong heritage and have an interesting story behind them. The Singapore Sling was created to allow women of that period to disguise their alcoholic drinks as punch.   

What got you into cocktail bars?

I got into cocktail bars whilst managing a small restaurant in my hometown. During my time there I found a real passion for menu development, creating my own cocktails inspired by classics. From that point I knew the experimental and creative element of making drinks was what intrigued me, I felt like I’d unlocked a completely different side to bartending. After I had discovered my passion for creating drinks, I knew the next step was to find a job at a respected cocktail bar, so I could expand my knowledge and learn more about the cocktail trade.

What makes a great cocktail bar?

To me a great cocktail bar is a place which fits any occasion. Going on a date? Meeting up with some friends you haven’t seen in a while? Heading for a swift one after work? Or maybe a place where you often find yourself when you’re just wanting a minuet to yourself. A great cocktail bar offers a sense of sanctuary as well as an escape from whatever may be going on in your life. Aesthetically a lot of factors also come into play such as soft lighting, mellow music, and decor. Arguably a cocktail bar which directs its focus primarily on the drinks they create are ones I value the most, where the product is that important and executed so perfectly that no other thoughts cross your mind asides from how great the drink tastes.

What do you enjoy most about the industry?

One of the main elements I enjoy the most about the industry is the creative side. I love experimenting with new spirits that appear on our back bar, trying new flavour pairings and developing a drink from start to finish. I am very lucky to have creative freedom at Jakes Bar, having the opportunity to create new drinks for our menu on a regular basis. I really enjoy customers choosing and enjoying the drinks I create. Even more so when they come back for a second one. As well as this I enjoy learning, for myself only being in the cocktail industry a couple years now I am constantly learning new things. Surrounded by great people who take time to expand my knowledge and aid my progression is something I am deeply appreciative of. 

What’s a signature drink of yours?

One of my signature drinks is my recent cocktail I created for the Jakes Bar Menu. Called the Kentucky Rose, it marries delicate flavours with a soft bourbon. Combining Kentucky bourbon with elderflower Rose honey and lemon, it creates a boozy yet light fluffy coupette. But if you want to know more about it you know where to find me. 

Favourite post shift meal?

Any pasta with any sauce. Seriously pasta is the only thing that fuels me. A nice tagliatelle with a mascarpone and tomato sauce is the favourite at the moment.

What does being a Top 50 Cocktail bar mean to you? 

Working in a Top 50 Cocktail Bar is something I’m incredibly proud of. The people I work with at jakes bar have all worked incredibly hard over the many years to achieve this award. Whenever I come into jakes and see the plaque on the wall behind the bar it is a constant reminder that what we are doing is recognised as well as respected. Whether it be our customer service, our menu developing, or even finding ways to be more sustainable, Jake’s Bar is constantly progressing, and it is no shock to me that we won this award.

What is the best cocktail bar you’ve ever visited?

I am forever telling myself I need to visit more cocktail bars but somehow, I always end up in a dive bar. Despite this I did visit a cocktail bar in Manchester a couple months ago called “The Fitzgerald” I really liked it there as it combined classic cocktails with more of a chilled vibe, I’m a huge fan of bars with great atmosphere.

What do you enjoy most about working at Jake’s Bar?

The contrast between the day and night. Throughout the day I consider Jake’s Bar as a chilled getaway and throughout the night I consider Jake’s as a party bar. It’s great working at a bar where you can experience both ends of the spectrum. Another thing that I love about working at Jake’s Bar is the consistency of our drinks, whatever the time whether it be a mid-week daytime or a Saturday night, we still provide beautiful intricate cocktails from our menu as-well as a huge list of classics. 

Least favourite ingredient?

Mezcal, I really wish I liked it. I’ve tried so many drinks attempting to widen my pallet to try and enjoy it but it seems like there’s been no luck so far. Maybe someone could change my mind?

What does the future hold for Jakes Bar?

With distilling back in full swing and our menu development getting more intricate I know that jakes has a very promising future. I hope for our homemade distilled liqueurs to make a comeback so we can use our new bottle shop space on the ground floor.
Alongside this we have an Incredibly strong management and bar team in place who will aid jakes progression as a top 50 bar. With management prioritising tastings as well as brand ambassador events and our bar tenders prioritising personal development the only way is up for us. Every day we are learning more from the people we work with and growing as individuals as well as a team.