A French mixologist with an Asian heart
Who are you?
Tim or “Moustiche”
Where are you from?
A question that haunts most expatriates… So I’m just going to tell you where I’ve been and you decide where I’m from. I was born in France (Rennes), grew up in Nantes and moved to Asia at the age of 7. Stayed in Singapore for four years and moved to Hong Kong for seven years. After graduating high school I then headed to Paris. Unfortunately this city didn’t work out for me so I decided to make my way back to Asia...
Where do you currently live?
What is your current occupation?
On paper, "mixologist" but you can surely call it bartending… Currently in the process of opening a new restaurant on Hollywood road called Bistro Boheme aka Bibo. Regarding the bar: we are more focused on old forgotten classic cocktails from the 1930’s, we’ll also be playing with absinthe for a part of the menu and the signatures… you’ll just have to come and try them!
Tell us more about your path.
I started a bachelor’s degree in Communication and Information at Sorbonne University Paris III. At that time I had already started working in restaurants right after graduating high school. I worked throughout all summer as commis sale and commis bar (food runner and bar back) in a café called “café de l’Odéon” and did a few extras during the academic year. After my first year of university I went back to working in the same café (as a bartender) and that’s when I started getting hooked to the industry. The thrill of those long hour shifts and the sore muscles in the morning made me want some more. Working with people that had been in the industry for more than 20 years gave me a new vision of this world but also respect for those that practice the profession. My goal was set and my course had changed.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I try not to think too far ahead because I know I still have a lot to learn… but I hope by then I’d have started my own business or partnership for a consultancy company or maybe open my own outlet. Who knows? It’s not something I like to think about it because I know it will change eventually depending on the people I encounter.
What language(s) do you speak?
French, English and maybe Spanish when there’s one too many beers…
What are your passions/aspirations?
I am passionate about my job as a bartender but also about everything that surrounds the industry. It’s a profession that demands so much care, attention and details. The person that motivated me to stay in this field was my previous manager back in Paris. A man of knowledge that would do everything perfectly in crazy manners… I don’t know if that makes sense but it inspired me!
What are the adjectives that would best describe you?
Determined and motivated.
What is unique about you?
I stand out a lot in a crowd. Especially in a city like Hong Kong… because of my mustache! I might sound very cliché for a bartender to have a mustache, but not in Hong Kong!
What is your favorite French restaurant/place in your current city?
That’s a tough one… I don’t really go to French restaurants in Hong Kong. But if I had to pick one I would say Metropolitain. The prices are reasonable, the food is good, and you’re in nice quiet neighborhood that doesn’t go crazy like Soho or Wyndham Street. There’s a good atmosphere, and the chef is always around checking his tables.
What is your favorite French dish?
Steak tartare of course!
If you were a French brand, which one would you be?
Picon... I love picon! Reminds me of the one drink we were allowed to have after our shift ended in Paris and I always had a picon biere. And it’s hard to find in Hong Kong…
What is the first word that comes to your mind when thinking about “French Savoir-Vivre?
Culture. It would be a shame to forget our manners...
By Sophie Baron