Yann Salentin: House Garden (Paris)

Yann Salentin is the co-founder of House Garden in Paris. He makes us two cocktails, one with Rum and Homemade Citrus Syrup and the second with Suze and Pineau des Charentes infused with Mustard Seeds.

Yann introduce yourself
I’m Yann Salentin, I am 28 years old and I started my career in Corsica. I moved to Thailand and moved back to Paris where I met Olivier (my business partner) while we were working as bartenders at The Pullman Montparnasse and we got on really well, especially regarding cocktails. I’ve never studied hospitality so I went back to school, but before I finished I received a job offer as a bar manager to a three floor bar/restaurant focusing on meat, whisky and cigars. Then I became the beverage director for Ralph Lauren restaurant groups. At the same time, Olivier and I thought we should open our own business because we worked hard and it should be more rewarding. We both share the same love of sourcing the right products, alcohol and food and House Garden is all about authenticity. We do everything ourselves and the place is a low ABV bar, so we play more with liqueurs, vermouths and bitters (even if you can order a strong classic drink if you want to). We offer bar food too, with the same idea of authenticity and sourcing, for instance, our charcuterie is organic without antibiotics supplied by a small producer in France.

The classic you want to show us
40ml of Plantation Pineapple Rum
20ml of Lemon Juice
15ml of Citrus Homemade Syrup

The bar you dream of
Having a place where I could work with local products and have my own garden, so I could make everything myself. I’d also like to promote the products of local French farmers, especially if the bar was based in the South of France. I am originally a carpenter, so the bar would be full of wooden furniture I made myself. It would look like a chalet for 40-50 people to create an atmosphere that people can’t find at home. For me it’s all about authenticity.

What do you do in your time off
I go to the cinema, watch series, read a lot and spend time with my wife and family. My inspiration regarding food comes from my mum.

The spirit you like the most
Whisky is my go-to especially Islay for the peat. There are so many whiskies which are finished in different casks it gives you so many options to play with. In cocktails I like to use bourbon with its corn notes and fat washed with beef ribs, it is a perfect match. I started with Maker’s Mark and really like this one, as it’s easy and efficient.

What makes a good cocktail
It’s all about balance and especially for us with our low abv approach, it’s even more important. The customer really needs to feel the different ingredients and the texture because it’s not just about the spirits.

What ingredient do you enjoy using in cocktails
Pedro Ximenez as it can be dry or rich and sweet in a cocktail. Even neat with a good cigar, it’s a fabulous sherry.

The signature cocktail you want to show us
Charles Ingalls is Back
35ml of Bourgoin Pineau des Charentes infused with Mustard Seeds
20ml of Suze
20ml of Black Radish Syrup
15ml of Lemon Juice
Top with Prosecco

Where do you think we need to go to interview another bartender
In Paris you have to go to Blue Bird, Le Calbar, Sherrybutt and Gentlemen 1919. In Thailand, check out the Rock Bar on Koh Samui.

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