Why the Cabin Bartender?

Why the Cabin Bartender?

I’m Mark – a retired fireman, married to a goddess, father of three, savorer of food, exhorter of cocktails, collector of whiskey… absolutely living the life. Why the Cabin Bartender

As a child, my love for food began in my family’s garden. We grew and canned our food, raised and processed our own meats, and sold any abundance at the local farmer’s market. This provided the foundational understanding that great foods start with fresh, high quality ingredients. When I started cooking myself, I devoured cookbooks and experimented with new cuisines while searching for new culinary experiences, eating around the U.S. and abroad. From a fresh papusa and a cold beer at a Springdale taqueria to Chilean wine and pork belly at a white tablecloth restaurant in San Jose’s Barrio Escalante, I revel in the experience of dining well and actively seek new experiences.

When I discovered the magical elixir of the tongue, the lubricant of conversation: whiskey, I began exuberantly searching for other amazing spirits and eventually, to the art of the cocktail. When I met my wife, I mentioned in passing that any woman that could bake a pie and make me a proper Old Fashioned, I would be sure to marry. Thanks to the power of Google and her Grandmother’s baking lessons, she perfected her seduction skills and has forever held me entranced.

Years later, as I faced retirement from 20 years in the Fire Service, I decided it was time to dive headfirst into what I love and share my passion with others.

When deciding on a name for my business, I wanted a name that spoke to my love for entertaining… one that speaks of wonderful experiences and fond memories. My wife and I fell in love in a cabin, got engaged in a cabin, and got married on the porch of our family cabin overlooking a beautiful river with a handful of our closest friends and family. We are blessed to have a small river cabin as our family retreat that nourishes and revitalizes our souls. I cook and experiment with cocktails and she paints and puzzles with a drink in her hand. We lay in the hammock, float in the river, love on each other, and plan for the future. I am the Cabin Bartender, a role we both appreciate quite a lot.

The cabin has always been our sanctuary.


One of those nights in the hammock, my wife insisted that my most remarkable skill is producing great cocktails in any environment… at our cabin, for instance, where the kitchen is small, my tools are limited, and the local stores don’t carry many specialty products, I have created some of my very best signature cocktails. It is, perhaps even, the limitations that spark my creativity there. Cocktails that are simple, accessible, and easy to make in any location. Oh, and delicious of course. With a basic kitchen and the right supplies, nearly anything is possible.

From recipes, inspiration, and new tastes to parties, events and our favorite haunts, The Cabin Bartender is my way of bringing my passion and knowledge to you. I’ll be sharing my experiences with you, answering questions, and learning as I go. My email newsletter “The Weekly Escape” delivers inspiration, recipes, and instructionals to your email inbox. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do. Thanks for reading!

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