First Person

Courtesy of Rostik Group
Grigory Krasovsky, 23, winner of TGI Friday's barman contest:
Previously, I was an insurance agent. I dreamt of learning to surf and opening my own club. The first dream has come true -- all that's left is to open a nightclub.

"Being a barman is the only profession, of all that I have tried, that not only gives me satisfaction, but also true pleasure.

"To get this job I had to pass an in-house course and practice at one of the restaurants. Skills are achieved with time. The art of being a barman, like any other, needs constant perfection, practice, persistence and inspiration.

"I always go to work with great joy, anticipating meeting the customers. Talking with the guests, I always try to be positive and hospitable, and when I see how my energy transfers to them, I'm ready to move mountains.

"This is a job that allows you to live, not just to work certain hours a day. However, like any other job, it is both emotionally and physically demanding.

"We get a base salary plus tips, which comprise most of my income. Of course, one would always like to earn more, but what you get out of the job depends on what you put into it.

"All barmen are brothers by blood -- or more precisely, by alcohol in it. I don't think that I'm better than other barmen. I have my secrets, but if I revealed them they wouldn't be secrets anymore and everybody would be able to become a champion.

"I can only say that it is important to be up to date with what's going on in the field. Of course, I have to go to other bars and restaurants just to make sure I still have the best cocktails."