Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Roberto “Robi” Rosa has been bartending for 16 years. He was first introduced to the spirits industry as an engineering student in Mayaguez; a bar owner teasingly suggested he should learn to bartend because he already spent more time at the bar than anyone who worked there. Though a joke, it struck a chord. Deciding that engineering was not for him, he focused all his efforts into honing his craft as a bartender. Always seeking to learn and improve, he moved to New York in 2013, and pulls inspiration from the city, learning from the different cultures and people he has met. He incorporates these various flavors in his cocktails while adding a touch of the Caribbean to them.
Robi’s “keep it simple” style, which involves choosing ingredients to accentuate key notes while focusing on the balance of the cocktail, has served him well; he has won several bartending competitions including the Diplomatico World Tournament (2015, NY Winner and National Finalist), Bacardi Legacy (2015, East Coast Regional Finalist), Bacardi Legacy (2014, NY Winner and National Finalist), the World Class Puerto Rico (2013 & 2012, Finalist) and the 25th Puerto Rico National Cup, Professional Classic (2013, Second Place). With a competitive spirit and thirst to learn, Robi hopes to become one of the best.