Best Barkeeper Talent 2023

The best Barkeeper talent comes from Lucerne

The young Barkeeper Timo Schulz from the Capitol bar in Lucerne won the "Best Barkeeper Talent 2023" award at the big award night on October 25 at TRAFO in Baden. He has only been working in this profession for two years.

When you enter the Capitol bar at Zentralstrasse 45 a, there is a beautiful display case at the back. There are many different cocktail books and merchandise items from "Capi" such as caps, a shirt and a jacket with the Capitol logo. The newest item in this cabinet is the award for the best Barkeeper talent in Switzerland, which has found its place here.

It was won by 21-year-old Timo Schulz, who was one of the three finalists in the "Best Barkeeper Talent" category. He poses proudly for photographer Steven Kohl with the award in front of the wall of spirits that almost reaches the ceiling. Many of the guests in the Capitol Bar know the young Barkeeper, who usually stands behind the bar in a black shirt and black trousers. Many feel at home in this great bar. "There are people who call the Capitol their second living room."

Slipped in and stayed

His boss is Tim Michel. The laid-back guy with the long hipster beard has owned this bar for 17 years. "I'm delighted to have been working for him for over a year," says Timo Schulz. His Barkeeper career began at the "Schüür" concert hall. "When I did my vocational baccalaureate, I was looking for a cool part-time job and found it there. I was always able to stand behind the bar at concerts at the weekend. I enjoyed this work right from the start." He had previously done something completely different. As a structural draughtsman specializing in architecture, he spent a lot of time at his PC. He realized that he needed contact with people: "I like being in contact with lots of people. I really like that here. I also like being awake at night."

New object for the display case of the Capitol bar in Lucerne: the award by Timo Schulz.

Craft learned in Barcelona

He is also extremely inquisitive. He soaks up everything from the bar world. That's why he attended the European Bar Tender School in Barcelona. For a month, he was given concentrated facts about spirits and the professional world of Barkeeper. And that's not all: "We had to mix cocktails every day under a certain amount of time pressure. I also learned how to work efficiently and quickly. It was a great foundation for me." Even before starting this school, he was able to secure a job at the Capitol bar.

Fly away from everyday life

You can tell from his enthusiasm that he has taken a lot with him from Barcelona. Above all, the high-energy atmosphere in the bars there. And a certain nonchalance. "There was half a party in almost every bar. The Barkeeper people there always have a lot of fun. That also has an effect on the guests." He says euphorically that he wants to spread the same kind of atmosphere in the Capitol. Sure, he's not always in a good mood either. But: "I've often noticed that: When I come here, everything is blown away. It's a feel-good oasis for me, where I can fly away from everyday life."

"I am integrated into the cocktail development process. I get a lot of encouragement from the whole team here."

Timo Schulz, Best Barkeeper Talent 2023

Big fish drink

There is a special bar menu on the tables. "It's the Bar Capitol movie menu, where we create a cocktail based on a movie," explains Timo Schulz. The story of a cocktail is presented in a comic style. Next to it are short, pointed texts. The drawings for the bar menu were created by an artist from Lucerne, says Timo Schulz. He has already been able to contribute to the menu. One of his drinks is based on the movie "Big Fish". It features a scene with a werewolf, around which he designed his cocktail. "I worked with gin and blood orange syrup. I shook everything with vegan egg white. I then put a dried orange on top of the beautiful foam." The Capitol crew regularly develops a new selection of self-created drinks. "I'm integrated into the cocktail development process. I get a lot of encouragement from the team here," says Timo Schulz.

Next year, he would like to get his landlord's license. "I hope to open a bar myself one day." The way he looks, he will probably go through with it.

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