Behind the Bar: Alyzabeth “Lyz” Davis
Alyzabeth “Lyz” Davis
710 King Street
Old Town Alexandria
Lyz Conjures up her Summer in Maine cocktail. Stoli Bluberi Vodka, Bacardi Superior White Rum, blueberry lemon-honey syrup, lavender extract, lemon, club soda and blueberries for muddling!
Lyz is behind the bar Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday – 4pm to close.
How did you get started in the bartending business?
I started in the bartending business in an unusual and interesting way. As a native of Maine, I began working at 17 at a local dine-in movie theater, Smitty’s Cinema. Smitty’s beverage execution consisted of servers taking drink orders then actually going to the back and preparing them on our own. We were trained in cocktails, proper beer pours, etc. After working there for 4 years I was fortunate enough to have a friend introduce me to this awesome island in Sebego Lake. There was a cafe there called Frye’s Leap. Here I would actually get behind a traditional bar, prepare cocktails and interact with patrons. The interaction with great people and creating drinks that they loved really drew me in. I was hooked. Creating cocktails for people also linked into another passion of mine which is baking. Now I could use my pastry expertise to combine different flavors to really create unique combinations that my guests would love!
What is your biggest bartender pet peeve?
My biggest pet peeve is when guests believe they are entitled to one too many drinks – especially when it’s after hours. Having to tell guests that they can’t have another cocktail or that the bar is closed is an issue I know all bartenders share!
What is one of the ways clients try to get you to buy them a FREE drink?
When their drink is gone so quick, they use “there was a hole in the bottom of my cup” I think I need a new one.
What is the best/worst pickup line you’ve heard since you’ve been behind the bar?
My favorite pick up line came from a customer who made a comment about my red hair. When we started talking he asked if my name is “Ariel, since we “Mermaid” for each other.” I had to laugh!
Tell us about an interesting encounter you have had with a customer.
I can recall there were 2 girls I met in DC while working at Yard House. I was still really new to the area and they were so friendly. They stayed at the bar for more than 5 hours drinking and chatting. (Mostly chatting ha!ha!) I had never gotten so close to someone at my bar before. One of them was actually breaking into the wedding/catering business. She was in the process of building her business so it was more of a side thing at the time. We bonded instantly having that connection over the wedding industry. By the end of the night we even talked about potential business partnerships in the future; where I would provide her with my wedding cakes while she focused on the other details. We still talk to this day about possible future plans. It was really interesting because I was never able to get so close to one of my guests from the bar and I’m glad we still talk today.
If you could have a drink with anyone past or present, who would that be?
I’m a huge foodie, and I did attend culinary school. If I could sit and discuss the industry with anyone I would love to sit down with Gordon Ramsay and have a drink. I would love to pick his brain and see how he started as an apprentice and how he eventually worked his way up to create a culinary empire. His brutal honesty and tough work ethic is definitely entertaining to watch!
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