This is Kevin Demers.
Kev is 35 years old. He has a four years old daughter. Studied in Film Writing. Dreamed to be a professional hockey player. And owns some of today’s Canada’s best bars.
What we realized meeting with him is that Kev is an inherently shy person and got into bartending to help him overcome his shyness. He knew he wanted to work in hospitality but also knew he didn’t want to be a server because he was afraid to approach people. That’s why he wanted to be a bartender, because at the bar people come to you and not the other way around. And it worked. Kev became a very successful bartender, but was always bartending as a side line during weekends to allow him to do what he really wanted during the week.
And for a while, Kev thought he was going to have a career in writing. How he got to become a bar owner is an interesting story full of coincidences. Not so coincidental we could say…
One day, Kev was still a young bartender and got the opportunity to participate in Bombay Most Imaginative Bartender competition. Which he did and won the regionals. When he came back, people thought he won out of luck so he did it again the next year, and finished in the world top 6 finalists.
After those experiences, Kev got a couple job offers as a movie writer in Toronto and Nashville. Meanwhile his girlfriend tells him he’s gonna be a dad. So Kev decides to go to Tales of the Cocktail to think it all out. Yes, you heard that, the perfect place for mediation and introspection, right?
Turns out he did think things over and the day he got back, he got a call from the landlord of a space he had eyes on in the old port and signed the lease for what was to become The Coldroom.
Building Coldroom happens to be the hardest thing he ever did. But lucky for us, he succeeded and his success radiates much larger than the walls of his bars. Kev has played an active role in putting Montreal on the international map and in forging new generations of bartenders that will one day hopefully not get through as much hell as he did to open their own bars.
A little bit more.
The three words that describe him best –
Creative / hard-working / passionate
A fun fact about him –
He loves chick flicks.
His life moto –
Do what you like. Do what you want. Invest in yourself.
What he likes most about bartending –
The creativity. The stories you can create, the idea that you create a whole new world. That’s what he also loves most about other bars, to enter another universe and be completely immersed in it, to taste a cocktail that will blow your mind, to have an excellent service. All the wow factors.
The quality he likes most about an employee –
The people that like to work and that work with passion. All the skills can be taught, but you can’t teach someone to be hard-working and to have passion.