General manager of Liverpool’s newest cocktail bar Margaritas, Adam Wood, is expert at mixing up its namesake famous tequila cocktail. But 26-year-old Adam’s skills don’t stop at the bar’s signature drink – he’s got an A-Z knowledge of ingredients which means customers can challenge him to make their favourite and he’ll always deliver.
“I reckon I can make hundreds of different cocktails without having to look up any ingredients,” he says. “It’s like being a chef, it’s just a question of remembering all the ingredients which go to make the basic recipe, that’s the key, and then you can put your own twist on them.
“We pride ourselves on having really well-trained knowledgeable bar staff at Margaritas so even if a cocktail isn’t on our menu, customers can ask for it. We do have a dedicated margarita menu with six different varieties, but with flavour variations you get up to 20, plus we have weekly specials which the bartenders compete to have added to the menu.”
For Adam, from Allerton, Miami-inspired Margaritas on Victoria Street represents a homecoming.
After a stint in London, where he managed a bar in the city alongside a job in property development, he decided to come back to where his career in hospitality began.
“I missed being in Liverpool, there’s no other place like it, and I missed my family and friends so I was really keen to get back. When the owners of Margaritas were looking for someone they invited me for a chat and I was sold on the idea straight away.
“It’s just something different, it’s got such a good vibe about it with an older crowd, and I really believe it will be good for the city.”
Adam fell in love with bar work as a student when he got his first job at Leo Casino on the waterfront, while he was studying for a degree in international business and finance at Liverpool University.
“They told me they didn’t usually take anyone with no experience but I talked my way into it and as soon as I started I loved it. It’s hard work, and I wasn’t finishing until 4am, but it was a perfect way to meet new people – other staff and customers – so working became like my social life.”
When the bar manager of the casino moved to Mojito, he took Adam with him and he stayed there until after he graduated.
Now he’s back on Victoria Street and can’t wait to see it become the city’s number one bar and restaurant destination again.
“Over the next six months I think it’s going to get so popular and the more places to go here the better, because it’s good for everyone.”
Although he’s general manager, customers could well see Adam still on cocktail duty at Margaritas, especially at the weekend peak. “I’ll always jump in when it’s really busy, whether it’s in the glass room washing glasses, mopping the floor or serving behind the bar. That’s still my favourite job.”