As manager of the Broken Shaker, Gui Jaroschy has a job that's much bigger than slinging good drinks. The Miami Beach bar, which started as a pop-up by Bar Lab partners Gabe Orta and Elad Zvi, has turned into a national brand.
Now that the Broken Shaker has locations in Los Angeles and Chicago — and one planned for New York City — Jaroschy has been tasked with drafting a mission statement that explains the bar's identity as it grows.
"The first years, it was about Gabe, Elad, and myself," Jaroschy says. "But how can you keep that thing going when you can't be everywhere at the same time?"
He says the Shaker began as a place to grab good cocktails, but he quickly realized there were more pieces to the puzzle. A great bar is a place with good drinks that also treats its patrons right every time.
"The creativity of the cocktails has always been the way to get people in the door. That's the grabber," he says. "But the hospitality, and the setting itself, is the driving force."
The Austin native learned at an early age how to treat people well. "My father was artistic director at a theater, but he was more than that," Jaroschy says. "He was the venue's host and the person putting it all together. He knew how to connect with people."
Admittedly shy as a teen, Jaroschy was drawn to the hospitality industry. "The day I turned 18, I applied at a restaurant," he says.
Turning to a marketing career for a while proved disastrous, so when Jaroschy moved to Miami Beach, he applied at the Delano, where he started as a breakfast waiter before working his way to bartender and then manager.
"That was my education in bar management: handling a $20 million establishment with no experience," he says.
The experience paid off, and Jaroschy now runs a bar that consistently wins accolades, including a coveted spot on the World's 50 Best Bars list. Jaroschy says the honors are good, but he always keeps his head level and the basics in mind.
"For a drink to connect with people, it should have a personality, it should be balanced, and the flavors should complement each other," he says.
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Creating a libation with all of those qualities isn't always easy, though. He recalls the genesis of the Shaker's Fish and Rye cocktail. "It's like a Sazerac made with fish sauce, and it's delicious. But there were so many spine-tingling versions before we got it right," he says.
Jaroschy is pleased with how the Miami bar scene has grown but believes it needs to reach the next level. "For my next project, I would love to open a refined, seated-only cocktail bar," he says. "We have spaces that feel that way, like Café Roval, but I'd like to have a dedicated spot."
He envisions a space similar to places in Paris, Dublin, Chicago, and New York, a bar with leather lounge chairs where patrons can engage in conversation.
"I'm a grumpy old man at heart about to have a kid," the 36-year-old says, "so my interest now is in getting together with a friend over a drink and enjoying a good talk."