Robert Hoover

Robert Hoover, Bartender

 

profilepic_largeNewport Beach bartender Robert Hoover once named a drink after a 1940s-era .38 Special he inherited from his father, who acquired it from the Los Angeles Police Department. Known to friends and customers as “The Bearded Bartender,” Hoover works at Bosscat Kitchen & Libations, where creative Southern-inspired American food, a whiskey tasting room and an energetic vibe earn stellar reviews.

Reciting a quote he learned from his late father, “Good things take time but great things happen all at once.” Hoover says he finds inspiration for a great new drink all at once, anywhere. Sometimes it’s watching a cooking show about a new seasonal ingredient or flavor; other times it’s the feeling he gets from a song or a movie.

 

“I enjoy calling my cocktails by obscure or indirect references to the mood of the creation rather than the ingredients,” he says.

Hoover’s latest creation is “Tex-Me Later,” a spin on the Texas origin of Tito’s Vodka and a snippet of conversation he overheard. He started with vodka because it’s the most requested bar spirit and mixed in honey syrup, apple cider vinegar and Chipotle Sour Blend for a bracing southwest flavor that complements Bosscat’s bold menu. The drink is garnished with a dried chili pepper.

“It is a savory cocktail and it has a lot of elements to it,” Hoover says. “I remember someone saying, ‘text me later,’ and I woke from a dream with the name.”

Hoover, 38, has worked in the restaurant industry since he was 24, and used The Perfect Purée products a number of years ago. He was reminded of them recently while listening to a mixology podcast. Along with The Perfect Purée Chipotle Sour blend, he’s used The Perfect Purée Raspberry Puree for a seasonal lemonade and continues to experiment with other flavors.

At a high-volume bar like Bosscat, which has a lively happy hour and a loyal nightly following, Hoover says there’s rarely time for him to create his own syrups. The purées guarantee flavor and consistency, leaving him more time to indulge his creative spirit. “It’s an amazing product,” Hoover says.

Recipes by Robert Hoover

Tex-Me Later

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