Hendricks BBQ's Keyan Still: Featured Bartender of the Week
Who would you most like to have a drink with and why?
I guess I'd have to say Plato. He's someone who really changed the way people were thinking. Just sitting down with a bottle of whiskey and that guy would be an incredible experience. The best thing about drinking isn't getting wasted. It's sitting down with someone and talking about things, so you might as well talk to someone who's redefined the way that people talk to each other.
What is the most bizarre or worst drink someone has ordered from you?
I've had people order Georgia Blue Paddle or something like that. People will drink something they like at another bar but not realize that those bars are making up their own cocktails. They'll come in and ask for those and just expect everyone to know them. Which is fine. My response is always, "What does it taste like? What do you like about it?"
What's the coolest or weirdest thing that's happened while working at Hendricks BBQ?
The coolest thing here is the staff. A lot of them had never done bartending like this before, and now we have people making it into competitions, and we have people coming in and saying we have the most knowledgeable bar staff. That's just amazing to me.
What do you think is the next big bartending trend?
Personally, I'd like to see beer cocktails take off. I's use whiskey, which comes from beer or cognac, which comes from wine. It's a great way of showing where those flavors come from. It's almost like putting history into a glass.
What's your favorite ingredient to use in cocktails?
Honestly, I like crème de cacao. I put it in all kinds of things. That and peppercorn syrup.
What's your favorite drink?
Water! OK, OK, favorite alcoholic drink...I'd have to say a Manhattan. You can make a different Manhattan for every person who walks in the bar.
Hendricks House Bloody Mary
This bloody mary features "moonshine" instead of vodka. It's called Kentucky Black Dog, and the corn is smoked in the same house where tobacco is smoked, giving this white whiskey a bit of a tobacco flavor that compliments the spices in a bloody mary beautifully.
1.5 oz. MBR Kentucky Black Dog moonshine
1 oz. house bloody mary mix with St. Louis BBQ sauce
splash of Charlottesville Hoptimistic IPA
House-made rib rub
Stir the moonshine, bloody mary mix and a splash of hoppy beer in a glass. Rim a separate glass with rib rub. Pour mix into the rimmed glass over ice. Garnish with skewered pickles.