Yinying is the champion for Diageo World Class 2014 and is currently working as a mixologist in Marini’s on 57. Having had the chance to work alongside the team at Marini’s and tutelage of seasoned mixologist Rizal Junior, she was presented with the opportunity to learn a variety of techniques that would serve her well in her daily work, as well as see her through her competitions on a global level.
Her bartending style spans from contemporary, classic cocktails to stirring up new creations encompassing Asian and Western flavours. Yinying participated in Diageo World Class at the encouragement of her mentorand friends. Up against the very best in Malaysia, Yinying was named the champion after grueling rounds of competitions in Malaysia & Singapore,impressing the panel of judges with her unique creations.
Winning the competition in Malaysia and emerging as a finalist on a global scale has not only further inspired her to do keep doing better, she has undoubtedly opened doors for the other aspiring female bartenders in a traditionally male dominated industry.
How did you begin bartending?
I began bartending immediately after graduating when I received my first job offer.
Bartending school or real-world experience? Do you recommend one or the other?
I recommend having real-world experience. You can learn the theories from school but you still need hands on experience to truly learn what goes on behind the bar.
How has your experience been being a female bartender? Did you find it harder to get a start or get respect?
Being viewed as the fairer and weaker sex, it was a tough start as there are many physical limitations for a female such as carrying heavy loads but as with any job, if you work hard, the respect will come eventually regardless of gender.
Tell us about how was it like winning the Diageo Reserve World Class 2014 title?
It was an unexpected win especially because my competitors were experienced and well respected bartenders. It was surreal.
Where do you start when creating a new drink?
I enjoy experimenting each time I get behind the bar. Through trial and error I am able to create a new drink.
What’s your favourite drink?
I do not have any favorites, I love different spirits for different reasons and am up to try anything.
As a female bartender have you ever felt like you’re not being taken as seriously by the male dominating Cocktail community?
The community is like a family and we are tight knitted so even though there aren’t many female bartenders in number, we are all treated equally.
What is the best thing about what you do?
Seeing the customers enjoy their drinks and seeing them become regulars. Receiving compliments is always nice.
What is the Worst thing about what you do?
This is tough one. I would have to say wiping the glasses and making sure they are spotless under dimmed lights or worse – LED lights in nightclubs.
If you couldn’t do what you do now, what would you do instead?
If I wasn’t a bartender, I would probably be working in a hotel as an administrative assistant.