Portrait: Barkeeper of the year 2021

Victor Topart: "I didn't expect that".

"Every time I'm in Zurich, something good happens," enthuses Victor Topart about the Limmat city. And so it will happen on 15 September 2021 on the night of the SWISS BAR AWARDS this year.

In the competition for the title Barkeeper of the year, the Fribourg native wins against Flurin Kopp from the award-winning Zurich Bar am Wasser and Monika Zünd from the Turbo Lama in Bern.

"I didn't expect that. Just crazy! I know my competitors, they are stars of the bars. Competing against them was a challenge for me," says the Parisian, who grew up in Quimper, Brittany.

Topart takes the trophy home. For the first time in a long time, it goes to Fribourg in western Switzerland. It is enthroned in the sphere of activity of the bar manager of the Crapule Club, which wants to see itself as a cocktail bar where guests can also dance, and not as a club.

From Paris to Quimper, to Biarritz, Valance, Scotland and Switzerland

Before Fribourg, the 33-year-old perfected his passion as a host in gastronomy in various countries and work stations such as service or bar: at the Lausanne Palace or Le Comptoir Cocktail Bar, at the Hotel de Biarritz including Barkeeper training, at the Scottish Gleneagles Hotel or even in a nightclub in Valance.

At the Crapule Club, which he helped to open in June 2019, as well as in Fribourg, the frequent traveller currently feels he has arrived. But no matter in which country he pursues his profession, the most important thing is to make the guests happy. His young team and the owners are also very happy with him about the fantastic award.

Barkeeper of the year 2021: Victor Topart, Crapule Club, Fribourg

"You felt the pressure drop," says the Crapule bar manager. His training in bartending had taken a bit of a backseat to management since opening the bar, he says. "I was worried I wouldn't be able to maintain the same level as my competitors," reports Topart, who knew he wanted to create at the bar from the age of 18.

He now shares his industry experience with newcomers. For almost three years, he worked as a trainer for young interested bartenders in the Diageo Bar Academy. Now he is continuing a teaching position at the École de Bienne for Wine and Sprits Education Trust and is starting his training as a beer sommelier on the side.

Teamwork is the most important thing for the Barkeeper and trainer

At the Crapule Club, he can confidently rely on the chef de bar and his team. When between 400 and 600 cocktails pass over the bar on busy nights, every move has to be spot on. "Without a good team and cooperation, nothing would work here if we want to maintain both quality and quantity. My team is the most important thing here," he says proudly of the ten-strong team.

"Without a good team and cooperation, nothing would work here if we want to maintain both quality and quantity."

Victor Topart, Barkeeper of the year 2021

Elaborate cocktails served in jugs, book bottoms or light bulbs, such as Les Folies de Moment, are only available until midnight. After that, signature drinks like the current Negroni Estivo or Mule Sauvage flow, which Topart only creates in a shared team spirit.

Cura Helvetica

Cura Helvetica by Victor Topart | Crapule Club, Fribourg
2 clMaker's Mark
4 clWilliamine Cucumber Timut Pepper Infusion
1.5 clMonin sugar syrup
1 clBelshazzar Bianco
2 clLemon juice
6 leavesMint
12 clSwiss Roots Ginger Beer

Decoration: Isomalt, mint leaf, "Cura Helvetica" espuma

Preparation: Shake all ingredients except Ginger Beer , fill up with Ginger Beer .

Infusion: Williamine, 2/3 cucumber, 4 g Timut pepper

He tinkered with his award-winning drink Cura Helvetica, based on Williamine (cucumber-timut-pepper infusion) from Morand, Maker's Mark, sugar syrup, lemon juice, Belsazar Bianco, mint leaves and Gents Ginger Beer for around seven days during the restrained summer.

With Cura Helvetica, he wanted to bring a little summer feeling to the tasting and sympathy judges at the SWISS BAR AWARDS. Translating this elation into liquid form and his performance made him the Barkeeper of the year 2021. Congratulations!

This article appeared in
Issue 4-2021

BAR NEWS magazine as single issue

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