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Wandering bartender Tetsuji Ono explores cocktails to suit people and food

2023.12.14

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A circle of friends connected by goo touch! The “FIST BUMP” corner of the radio program “GRAND MARQUEE” features people who live and enjoy Tokyo in a relay format.

On October 10, wandering bartender Tetsushi Ono will appear. We asked him about how he became a bartender, his title of “wandering bartender,” and mainly about how he communicates when serving cocktails at his restaurant.

What inspired me to become a bartender was Tom Cruise.

Celeina (MC): Let me start by introducing his profile. Tetsuji Ono is a wandering bartender from Oita Prefecture. He started bartending in his hometown of Oita, later standing in bars in Yokohama and Tokyo, and currently works as a bartender at the Chinese restaurant “Nanpu-ro” in Ginza. At the same time, he travels around Japan as an event bartender for liquor manufacturers and importers.

Takano (MC): You are a wandering bartender because you bartend at events.

Ono: That’s right. I think it would be more accurate to say that I was a wanderer.

Takano: But sometimes you still wander, don’t you?

Ono: Yes, that’s right.

Celeina:Because you were wandering at Naeba this year, too, weren’t you?

Takano:That’s right. We were next to each other at the “Fuji Rock” event. We greeted each other. Johnny’s highball was delicious.

Ono: Thank you very much.

Takano: You are dressed in your usual attire today, and the silk hat suits you well.

Ono:It’s not self-branding, but there are not many bartenders who wear hats, so I thought it would stand out.

Takano:But you really wore that outfit at Fuji Rock, didn’t you?

Ono:We wear silk hats every year at Fuji Rock, and then all the other bartenders started wearing hats as well.

Takano: You are creating a bit of a culture.

Celeina: The vests are nice, but they also have name tags. It says “TETSU-G.”

Ono: I’m allowed to use it like a bartender’s name like that.

Celeina:Then it is “TETSU-G” instead of Mr. Ono.

Takano: I would like to ask you many questions, but what made you want to become a bartender in the first place?

Ono:When I was in junior high school, I got hooked on Tom Cruise and watched a lot of movies. Among them, I fell in love with the movie “Cocktails,” in which Tom Cruise plays a bartender. Tom Cruise has been in many movies, but bartending was the job that I thought I had the best chance of being in. I don’t think I could be a pilot, either.

Takano: Spying is not an easy job to become, either.

Ono:Yes, that’s right. Bartenders were the closest to me.

Takano:They look cool, don’t they? When they make cocktails, they throw shakers from their backs.

Ono:Throwing the bottle and turning it. That was cool.

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