Nick is a legend on the London and International bar scene. Hailed by Time Out as "London's leading cocktail expert", he is the current world Mixologist/Bartender of the Year (as voted by the industry at the largest international industry event, Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans).
Nick began his illustrious bar career back in the early 1990s, when he started working behind the bar to pay for his studies at the Courtauld Institute of Art. He had a baptism of fire in the industry working first at Fred’s Club in Soho under the still influential and enigmatic bar maestro Dick Bradsell. Nick continued his apprenticeship with Dick Bradsell at many other bars during the 1990s including The Flamingo, Detroit and the legendary Atlantic Bar and Grill.
In 1996 he took his first job as a Bar Manager at the raucous and bohemian Cobden Club based in the Notting Hill, staying there until 1998 when he made a move that would change his life and the London Bar scene.
In 1998 he became the Bar Manager of Che in London’s St James. This bar would go on to employ a stellar team of bartenders and offer an unprecedented collection of spirits, many of which were exclusively imported from the U.S.A. and all over the globe. Che and the talented bar team won just about every award under the sun during Nick’s tenure as Bar Manager, including the coveted Evening Standard Bar of the Year. When the bar was sold in 2002 the trade magazine Class described it as the “Real Madrid of the bar world”.
It was during this time at Che that Nick first started working closely with chefs to develop signature drinks list for restaurants. He set up the bar in Cecconis with world famous chef Giorgio Locatelli. He has continued to work very closely with a number of high profile chefs including Mark Hix and Theodore Kyriakou of the Real Greek. Last year he travelled to the Paris Bar Show to present an innovative re-working of the Bloody Mary created in partnership with Michelin starred French Chef Thierry Marx.
Since 2003 he worked as a consultant to the Bar and Restaurant Industry with clients such as The Floridita, Lounge Lover, Boisdale, Harvey Nichols and the Hospital. His brand work has included Beefeater, Stolichnaya, Havana Club, Compass Box and U’Luvka.
While working for Stolichnaya on Harvey Nichols he helped shape a futuristic cocktail list that paid homage to classic traditions whilst using molecular mixology and innovative bartending techniques. The “Aromotised Martinis” featured delicately infused vodka, accented with a flavour perfume and served with homemade caviar.
In 2006 he opened The Hawksmoor steakhouse and restaurant, which has won many awards for its wonderful food and pioneering cocktail list. He is widely acknowledged to have re-discovered the category of drinks called Punches and they feature prominently on Hawksmoor’s drinks list. At bar shows all over the world during the past couple of years he has been trying to re-educate bartenders with the idea that although the cocktail is American the mixed drink has it’s roots in Europe in drinks such as Punches and Cups, a fact that most Europeans were unaware of. In 2008 he won the prestigious Tales of the Cocktail Worlds Best Mixologist. Recently he set up a drinks consultancy company called Strangehill with Cairbry Hill. Within just a couple of months they have worked with such prestigious clients as Jameson, Beefeater, Wyborowa and King Ginger. They have also established ongoing contracts with the famous chef Mark Hix, setting up the drinks program in not only his existing sites but also opening his highly successful new venture HIX and now HIX Restaurant and Champagne Bar in Selfridges, London.
At the same time they have been developing a full beverage program for the luxury eco resort hotel chain Sixth Senses, working in the Maldives, Oman, Vietnam and Thailand.