This is Kate Chernoff, from Victoria, head bartender at Clarke & Co.
Kate is 20 years old and is originally from a very small town just outside of Edmonton in Alberta. She moved to Vancouver Island to go study at University of Victoria. She started a Political Science degree and decided to leave school in order to focus on bartending during the pandemic. Apart from being a bartender, Kate is an accomplished synchronized swimmer. She has been training pretty much full-time all through high school and she still trains and teaches kids.
Kate was always very interested in hospitality. Her mother was a bartender for a really long time and always used to tell her about a lot of fun bartending stories. Kate started to work in hospitality as a hostess at an Earls back when she was 16 years old and has been eager to learn to bartend ever since. She stayed at Earls for a couple of years before getting a job at a Celtic dive bar in Edmonton. However, it wasn’t until she moved to Victoria and started to work with the 10 Acres Restaurant Group that she got her first bartending gig. This is where she learned basic technical skills and mostly, how to be very speedy and efficient in a high volume and fast-paced environment. Then one day, she saw an ad that Clarke & Co was
looking for a bar back and she decided to take a chance, even though she considered herself underqualified for the position. Little did she know that she was about to embark on quite a journey there. Starting as a bar back, she climbed her way up and is now their head bartender.
If she still has many things to learn, Kate is one of these people that will do whatever it takes to get where she wants to be headed. Her high energy, serial optimism is sure to bring her wherever she wants to go. She is deeply motivated by her passion for our industry and genuinely loves her job so much that we have absolutely no doubt that a great future awaits her.
For Kate's cocktail recipe, click here.
A little bit more about Kate...
The three words that describe her best: chaotic – passionate – determined
The next thing she wants to learn: Molecular gastronomy.
Her life motto: What would you do if you weren’t afraid?
One thing she hasn’t done on her life to-do list: Take months off, go travel around and go to different bars around the world.
One piece of advice for younger bartenders: Listen as much as you can to everybody that tells you about the industry and gives you advice. Enjoy the moments that are gonna get you there, because there are a lot of moments and a lot of steps that it takes to get where you want to be.