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Mr Rainer, they say alcohol preserves everything, except dignity and secrets. Would you agree?

There is a lot of truth in that. I always say teetotallers scare me. At some point the body and mind have to be let loose, it doesn’t have to end in excess. The teetotaller is just as much of a stark extreme as the alcoholic. I don’t just say that as a bartender. How does one recognise a good bartender?

Is that someone who listens, who tends to every wish of the customer? There are evenings when one wants to be advised, others directed, but other evenings when one just wants to have a drink and be left in peace. This delicacy of feeling is part of the great skill of a good bartender.

When did you know you wanted to be a bartender?

I started as a trainee at the Hotel Bayrischer Hof in Munich in 1986 and was captivated by flair of this grand hotel. In particular, I loved the room service, it was a great adventure every time. However, the man who made the biggest impression on me was the bartender. At that time I was 13. At 17, I hot-footed it into the night-time catering industry. I’ve done everything from bouncer to DJ, to working behind the bar. You also worked for years in Schumanns, alongside the legendary Charles Schumann.

The job at Schumann’s was good training. You can learn a lot from Charles. The culture of putting the guest centre stage is of paramount importance there. Of course, it was also a bar school. The freedom that I was able to enjoy there and the knowledge about such a variety of different alcohol strongly motivated me to be creative myself and one day to realise the dream of having my own bar. That seems to have worked. By now you’ve become Barman of the Year, owner of the company, Shaker, co-founder of the

Münchner Barzirkel (Munich Bar Circle) and owner of the coolest bar in Munich. What’s special about the Golden Bar?

Certainly my employees, it’s first of all them that make the bar something very special. Then there’s the special location in the Haus der Kunst, where the English Garden starts, surrounded by the Eisbach and its surfers. Good lighting in the room and select music are certainly also a part of the great atmosphere. What is important to me is that when someone has a drink with us, they should feel better than when they’re at home. For our ‘Bar Talks’ series, we would like to invite interesting guests here in the future. How should they conduct themselves?

For me, rules of etiquette have no place in a bar, except where they deal with utterly standard human manners, whether in a bar, pharmacy or at a supermarket till. You go to a bar first and foremost to have fun, unwind, or leave your everyday life at the door. How do I recognise a good bar?

From the service, of course, from how the spirits are dealt with, from the drinks menu but also cleanliness is an important factor for me – 211

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R2M one combines style and elegance with a touch of Rock ’n’ Roll in its own special way. Neither stuffy nor sophisticated. Rather cool, mys...


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