Behind the Bar, Wining & Dining

Behind the Bar – Bartender Kathleen Coombs

Behind the Bar with Bartender Kathleen Coombs © Chester Simpson
Behind the Bar with Bartender Kathleen Coombs
© Chester Simpson

Kathleen Coombs at River Bend serving a River Bend Cocktail

How did you get started bartending?
In the early 70’s I needed to supplement my income so I took a job waiting table at night. Liquor by the drink was new in Virginia, and people were very enthusiastic about drinking cocktails! I started working behind the bar and fell in love with it. Fine dining was just being introduced to the Washington area, and new restaurants were popping up everywhere. There were so many great opportunities.
What is your bartender pet peeve?
Someone talking loudly on their cell phone. Ever hear of texting?

What’s the best line somebody has used to get a free drink?
I won’t buy someone a drink because of a line. You have to earn that privilege.

What’s the most memorable pickup line you’ve heard?
I’ve never really heard a good pick up line. I’m always amazed when they work.

Can you tell me an interesting story?
Two gentlemen sat at the bar and I recognized one as a favorite customer that had moved away a year ago. I walked over to greet him not really focusing on the other man. He said “Kathy, so nice to see you again. I’d like you to meet James Gandolfini.” There he was. Tony Soprano Himself! The show was really hot at the time, and I was a huge fan. He was a really charming and funny, and I was thrilled to meet him. Unfortunately, it wasn’t long before “Tony” was recognized and had to be moved to a private room.

Who would you most like to sit down and have a drink with?
Billy Coombs

Please list the days and hours you work = M-F 4-12 pm
Wednesday, Thursday, Friday = 11:30-5:30
Phone# ( 703) 683-3650


~ Written by: Chester Simpson

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