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Paris Christofides

Paris Christofides

Paris Christofides is a World traveler, a connoisseur of lifestyle and a perceiver of situations. He has the charisma of seeing through things but seeing things coming in the future as trends although often creating trends! He is an extremely creative person capable of putting things together in a unique manner and has a way to present simple things in a stunning way. He is highly communicative and a people’s person thus a good trainer. He is flexible and adaptable coming from being a gypsy and an aristocrat the same time. His trade is being a consultant on food/drink and music, design and atmosphere, organization and management, personality coaching and…concepts, concepts, concepts!

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Made from molasses and sugarcane “honey”, Diplomático rums are produced in the foot of the Andean Mountains in Venezuela and became favorite rums around the world claiming all sorts of awards relevant to their reputation.



Diplomatico planas, in the range of all the rums produced by the distillery, is aged for “up to 6 years” and charcoal filtered to simply strip the color out. It is white with a note of yellow.

Some maintain that it is targeted to mixologists and sets itself apart with its ABV at 47%, clearly aimed at Tiki drinks. However Hacker finds it as delicate GOURMET and excellent a white rum as you are likely to find. Yes the alcohol is there, coconut, lemony and when tasted notes of pineapple with perhaps licorice or spice at the end are evident to the palate. Yes, Planas to be used in the Daiquiris for perfection, or for medium to sweet cocktails but also sip it down on the rocks in a balloon glass for perfect senses awakening!

We visited RUM TREE in Larnaca/Cyprus, a bar dedicated to the glory of rum with a list of rums to do justice to the Noble spirit. And as Alex Christodoulides, its founder maintains a mission statement to pay a tribute to rum and spread the gospel of rum thus developing the taste of it to multiple guests and people in the industry.

We enjoyed the Diplomatico Planas and praised it’s excellence through sipping but also enjoying Rum tree’s stories, by Alex himself.




“One story tells according to popular legend; El Presidente was created by Eddie Woelke at the Jockey Club in Havana, probably during the mid-1920s. He was said to have named it after then-president of Cuba Gerardo Machado, who served from 1925 to 1933. Others tell otherwise. Don’t believe them all. Just drink :) Cheers!” Alex Christodoulides 



Following an El Presidente formula, this one goes through our basic elements of creativity: Copy, Transform, and Combine, resulting on an El Presidente with a twist, a Rum Tree twist. 


• 45 ml Diplomatico Planas
• 20 ml Dolin Dry Vermouth De Chambery
• 15 ml Grand Marnier 
• 10 ml Homemade Rosehip and Hibiscus Syrup 
• Dash of Aperol  
• Orange Twist


• Add all Ingredients and ice in a mixing glass
• Stir with high quality ice 
• Strain into an Old Fashioned glass 


• Garnish with Orange Peel twist  and Blackberries



Following a Daiquiri formula, it goes into our basic elements of creativity: Copy, Transform, and Combine, resulting on a Daiquiri with a twist, a Rum Tree twist, with an exotic fruity note and Mediterranean. 

“Suggested on warm sunny days of summer, a great drink to have before you hit those Mediterranean entrées” Alex Christodoulides


• 50 ml Diplomatico Planas 
• 10 ml Medium Dry Sherry 
• 30 ml Freshly Squeeze Pineapple Juice 
• 10 ml Demerara Sugar Syrup
• 15 ml of Mix Citrus Juice
• Loose Leaves of Arugula


• Add all the ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice 
• Shake  and double strain into a chilled coupe glass


Arugula Leaves and a sprinkle of white pepper 


Speakeasyhacker PREFERRED 


What’s your story now?

Pavlos comes from Thessaloniki/Greece where he has worked with many teams at reputable bars such as Vogatsikou 3 and Spitaki Cocktail Bar. He took part in many bartending competitions with distinction. He also won the Beefeater MixLdn CY Competition. He declares a rum fan while amongst the people that inspired him is Ago Perone and Marian Beke on the knowledge of ingredients. Pavlos is currently the Head Bartender  at the Columbia Beach but has a story for the hacker!


1. What’s the fuss right now in the bartending world? 

Simple and classy drinks, not so fancy as the previous years and of course the re-invented classics. We respect the classics. Premium and healthy products, detox, pickled, salty and of course Vermouth and Aperitivo cocktails. It will be the next big thing….


2. You have created a cocktail ‘El Pappy’s’ for the Bacardi Legacy 2017. What was the inspiration for it’s name and can we try it somewhere?

The inspiration behind El Pappy’s is the first Brand Ambassador of Bacardi Family, Pappy Valiente. A happy bartender-brand ambassador. A taxi driver. The man with the hut on his head. A man with a raised glass of Bacardi Rum welcoming the tourist. Hospitality at it’s best. 

That’s my inspiration… 

You can try my cocktail at my bar of course…at Columbia Beach, but you will try it also to many bars in the next month all around the Cyprus.



3. How far do you want to go with your story?

I want to go as far as I can, as far as the story of  my Bacardi Legacy cocktail can go. I will try and I will do my best. Anyway the journey is the most important thing. It’s like a bag  that you are fulfilling with knowledge and stories….I hope it will never end.


4. How difficult is it to feel so responsible from the time of forming the idea to the execution and the dream there after?

No idea I will explore it now…..hahahahaha


5. What do you see as the future of Pavlos?

Hmmm…difficult question. I don’t really know. First of all I don’t know if I will be here for the rest of my life or at another country, let’s say England, London. For now , I would like to create a team with bartenders-friends and to work for what we all love, bartending!


6. Going back to the competition, what do you think the judges will like on your creation?

I believe that the judges will like the story behind my drink, the simplicity and the refreshing character of El Pappy’s.



El Pappy’s

50ml Bacardi 8Anos 

15ml homemade chilly syrup

15ml fresh lime juice

15ml pineapple juice

10ml cinnamon syrup


method: shake

glassware: Collins

ice: crushed ice

garnish: half thin wheel of pineapple



Klelia & Christmas

in Booze
on: 13 December 2017

Klelia Aristotelous, a newcomer in the bartending profession started her experience of the first contact with the bartending experience as a student of a hotel and tourism management course.



‘At first, honestly speaking, it was a way to make extra cash but I was drawn to it, it came to my realisation that this can be my dream profession.  It is a profession that does not lock you between four walls, it always challenges you to be creative and it does not limit you. Techniques, colors, smells, densities and depths....and always in service of those seeking an experience. Love it now!’ Klelia Aristotelous

We have visited Klelia behind the bar and enjoyed quite a few drinks performed by her while poping a few questions in between. Promising new face behind the bar...we will keep an eye on her as the feeling hacker has is that she will go far in this field, so let’s see!


1. Women are  sensitive, charismatic, feminine, romantic and more creative than the average man. Does this help in creating combinations of liquid spirits  behind the bar

Gender has nothing to do with being a bartender.  It is about love and passion for what it is you do. A bartender never stops searching, learning and practising.  Creativity is something that is born by combining these elements. If you have the charisma to be romantic and scenic it will also help to make stories about every drink you mix.


2. When you have guests at the bar how do you approach them?

An approach with a smile!  It is important and essential to make you guest feel that they are in a safe and friendly environment so they can trust you, relax and unfold in front of you, ready to experience.


3. What is your inspiration when you are about to combine different tastes?

For inspiration I follow a line marked by the classic cocktails.  After that, it is important to consider body flavours that you are about to combine.  From that point onwards you experiment and try different things until you reach a satisfying result.


4. How do you see bartending as a profession?

Many believe that it is an easy profession. Nobody really gets how tough it can be.  It causes emotional and physical exhaustion.  Some may argue that it has an expiry date but it still is a fulfilling and rewarding job.


5. What is the next level of mixology according to you. We started with the classics we went sky up developing and incorporating molecular, craft syrups and spirits, smoked, infused, washed and all this jeargon...what's next?

You never know what is next.  Technology and our imagination keeps surprising us all the time. However, many bars have been looking at things in a more environmental way, so they are giving more emphasis on reducing waste. For example, in many countries bars stop using straws. So if you can achieve a cocktail with having no waste at all then, both the environment and your business win.



6. What are the best values in a bartender today?

Knowledge and personality are the best values that a bartender can have.  Because, knowledge improves your skills and personality gains your customer’s trust.


7. Who is your inspiration?

I don’t have a person that is my inspiration but I get my kicks definitely from the environment at my workplace. It is a bar which has a vibrant and inspirational team.  “Library” is one of those bars that does not hesitate to take risks and evolve.  It keeps high standard and strong character throughout. I like it this way!


8. If you had a chance to work in a bar anywhere in the world...which one would this be?

Personally it is not a matter of where but with who. So, if I had the chance to work anywhere in the world, where there is something for me to learn, get inspired and help me to evolve. I would dream to work with Simone Caporale!


9. Match the following food with cocktails or spirits

a. Grilled white fish with lemon butter sauce -  glass of white wine or a basil smash

b. Dark chocolate mousse with crystalized blackberries - a glass of cognac

c.  Roast duck breast with green peppercorns - Rum old fashion

d.  Maki rolls with smoked fish -glass of champagne or  a Gin and tonic


We challenged Klelia to create some Xmas cocktails for us with Diplomatico Planas.

Secret santa

4 cl Diplomatico planas
2 cl St - Germain
1.5 cl home made grenadine syrup
1.5 fresh pink grapefruit juice
1 cl fresh lemon juice
fresh pomegranate and cinnamon stick for garnish


Christmas eve

5cl Diplomatico planas
2.5 cl chestnut and cardamom syrup
3 cl soya milk
1.5 cl fresh lemon juice
Spray with rosewater
garnish with dried rose


By Chef Nicos Constantinou


The Japanese began arriving in Peru in the late 1800s. Many factors motivated the Japanese to immigrate to Peru either in search of gold, the mild climate, the rich soil for farming, no epidemics etc as a result we have a fusion of these cultures as Japanese Peruvians, providing a platform for gastronomy to merge. This possibility of experimentation which this synthesis offers is today being exploited throughout the world. We met with Chef Nicos Constantinou specializing in Nikkei and Latin American cuisine.


. What is exactly Nikkei cuisine?

Japanese Food the South American Way…. At its simplest, Nikkei cuisine is the cooking of the Japanese diaspora. Japanese immigrants have found themselves in a variety of cultures and contexts, but have often maintained a loyalty to their native cuisine. This has required local adaptation over the last 100 years: the so-called Nikkei community has embraced a new country's ingredients and assimilated these into their cooking using Japanese techniques.


. How did you come across it and how did you get involved in it?

The desire to explore different ¬flavors and ingredients of the world in order to create aglobal style of cooking made me to travel a lot. The first time I came across Nikkei Cuisine was at Peru back to 2014



. How did Peru influence Japanese taste and vice versa?

Nikkei cuisine uses Peruvian ingredients prepared through a Japanese lens. In fact, most of Peru’s iconic fish dishes were actually made popular by Japanese cooks. Tiradito, the dish of raw sliced fish with aji pepper sauce, is considered a reinterpreted sashimi. Some ingredients that are now staples were popularized by Nikkei cooks for example Peruvian people never used to use octopus or eel.


Salmon Tiradito
Salmon, passion-fruit leche de Tigre, avocado mousse, black sea salt and sweet potato


Beef Tataki
Beef flamed and drizzled with virgin olive oil and Smoked aji panca, pear, passion fruit salsa, petals


. Give us your philosophy in approaching this style of cuisine.

Best available fresh ingredients are a must. Know your products, the balance of the flavors…For example Ceviche is rich in umami flavor thanks to the denaturalization of raw fish when mixed with lemon and salt. Chicha de jora, a beverage obtained from corn fermentation is frequently used in Nikkei dishes to bring out the umami flavor.


Lubina Ceviche
Seabass briefly marinated in Lime juice, Leche de Tigre – Tiger’s Milk, Aji Limo, Red Onions, nasturtium leaves, Yams, shiso and black garlic


Vieiras Ceviche
Scallops, Coconut leche de Tigre, radish, Cilantro, Red onion, Corn, Sweet Potato crisp


. There is sushi and sushi! What is the difference from Japanese traditional sushi and Nikkei sushi?

Techniques are the same, what is different is some ingredients like sauces   


. Give us some examples of best matching ingredient representing the fusion of these two culinary origins.

Aji Amarillo pepper with any fish, warm or cold


. Surely like most recent marriages of thoughts there is continuous evolution in this idea. Do you have a feeling which direction this is going?

Well is a big community of Chinese in Peru as well. The cuisine is called Chifa. Also New Mexican cuisine has an influence of Nikkei presentation.


. What are the most indifferent techniques in cooking this style compared to traditional French or Italian? 

The only thing that can define the difference between the two is the attitude with which they are prepared. Nikkei use dashi the French use stocks, sashimi is very similar philosophy with carpaccio …


. What would be your advisory tips to a younger chef approaching and learning this style of cuisine?

 Learn the ingredients use is very important to understand the cuisine.


. Are the skills needed by a chef different than the ones of a European cuisine chef?

Not really.


. Where have you experienced and were mostly impressed by Nikkei cuisine?

Restaurants  Maido in Lima and Pakta in Barcelona.


Picante de Camarones
Prawns, Moromi Miso sauce, Purple potato, spring onion, baby corn, crispy yam and lime


.Your motto?

I have an absolute passion for cooking and have done all my life.  I am very creative and love to make new and exciting dishes to serve to my customers. 


Director/Executive Chef Nicos Constantinou runs a Consulting company for Concept Development, Menu Development, restaurants start up, Training and Seminars. His personnal trainings and experiences he accumulated over the years from various locations such as  Nikkei, Peruvian Japanese upper class Restaurant in Miami, Florida, Usa; Coya Miami, Peruvian Restaurant Chain, Usa; Above Eleven Peruvian Japanese Fine Dining, Bangkok, Thailand. He has been practically trained in Paris, France  at the Henny Penny training center and in Italy for regional cuisine with practical training at  Rustichella d’Abruzzo.


The two are poles apart. It takes all sorts behind the bar those that are professionals no matter how they present themselves and those that just make a point to present themselves in all tattoo designs, body deforms, fancy aprons and hairstyles or not! My point is don’t be misled!

Bartenders are found  in places where drinks probably cost more and usually are the first to say good evening to you. Any of the others are usually untrained part timers or any bar staff leftovers, with no desire to grow other than being there for some extra cash and Mickey Mouse maneuvers from holding a bottle to filling a glass.

Bartenders are respected individuals,  as trained professionals that studied their drinks and backgrounds, learned and achieved, and have probably developed professional etiquette towards dealing with the public but at the same time they are like chefs where they have egos, complex beasts and  would be difficult to be handled at busy and preassurised times, but this is out of my story!

Economies, culture and social status positioning in some economies have not been encouraging  many to invest time and effort into the bartending profession but since the vodka revolution since the 90’s more and more manpower passion is pumped in the drinks industry. Bar staff or bartenders are like djs some that play well , some that not play well but look good and plenty of both sprouting.

The drinks companies  have been on a rat race as to what to produce and be different and win an extra share of the market. They appeal to manpower and use interesting personalities to launch and promote their new stuff. In fact this race is more similar to the ones of the perfumes industry! However these promoters, so called ambassadors are setting the ways on how to look, how to do it and what to do next as the newcomer bar staff are victimized to follow the trend and feel you are in the box and upgraded in  knowing more and more.

With growing  knowledge, self esteem and with some elements of good character, hopefully deriving from the upbringing of individuals, we come across wonderful personalities behind the bench,  representing at least the labels in displays behind them. It is enough to remember the right measurements and analogies, handled the bottles and gadgets with respect and with a slight eagerness to please…voila, a correctly balanced drink placed in front of the customer all in all to give an experience or a simple pleasure.

It is simpler than what most think! No one is asking the bartenders to dive into books and on line media and get lost in words like fermentation, blending, matured or casks, degrees and acidity…. If they do get into the details of knowledge  it should be to form a base to stand on instead of some random bits of information floating in the brain and expressed here and there as weapons to impose personality issues achieving a light impression. But what is more important to the establishment they represent and to the customers approaching the bench are the social skills and the goodwill to please them. If you are a bartender you should be a natural in giving and listening.

GIVE - A good word with a genuine smile. Try be the person who walked or drove and parked the car, probably meeting someone else there or not, budgeting already what to spend on time and moneys or the lady feeling a little uncertain  as to the table she would declare presence until her company comes, they both need a red soft carpet to feel comfortable and important to be walking in and you probably  don’t have one. They could do with a greeting and a warm smile acknowledging them coming in and declaring peace, yet alone the following word reassuring ability to serve, as in  “ would you like to take a seat at my bar or at the table here?”  or ‘ ill be with you in a second’ ‘ or what can I do for you?’ and all in all, words of offering efforts and suggesting good times ahead. And  this follows many ‘encores’

LISTEN- Don’t assume just because you are thrilled by your recent ego win of a new combination of liquids so called according to you cocktail, that everyone should try it. People have different tasting buds and ideas in their heads that are not in line with everyone else, and all changing at different times. So, listen to them after you suggest ideas like cocktails, beers, wines? and then question the taste prior to trying to match that and even suggest a little tasting adventure. Also have in mind that most of the time people do not have a clue what they want to drink which bring us to the psychologist expert trying to guess what may be their need to please them.

If there is no hints then play safe and suggest an easy way out. Aim to go for adventures on the second round of drinks which is when you have the opportunity to make a new friend and your boss a new dedicated client.

There are those that are trained well with good or bad personal marketing, those that do not know what they are doing with good personal marketing, there are those who have reached the impossible and know it all (!) with the attitude of Marlon Brando where unfortunately marketing works and finally those that are not interested and are there to kill time and win money. The axe is long and everyone  behind the bar is positioned here. Respect to the bartenders!


p.s. Random indicative photos shown with respect to bartenders featured.

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