XX Files–our weekly item on Toronto’s better bartenders.
Name/alias Linsey Bell/Sugar Plum.
Current bar Amber and Harbour Sixty.
How long bartending 12 years.
Your first drink/drunk I was at a party with my friends in high school and my friend Mike brought his parents’ home-made red wine… I was violently sick. I couldn’t smell red wine for years to come.
Influences I am definitely inspired by the time of year. I love to incorporate seasonal produce into my cocktails, things like apple cider and pears for the fall season.
Favourite cinematic bartender Tom Cruise with his eccentric dance moves in Cocktail.
Rules I won’t serve someone if they’re obnoxious or rude; I’ll just ignore them forever. I love taking traditional drinks and making them my own, adding a special personal touch to them. A drink that I call my own for this season is spiced rum, vanilla bean and fresh apple cider. Shake in a martini shaker and top with a touch of prosecco. It’s called the “Autumn Apple” and I serve it at Harbour Sixty.
Celebrity experiences Serving Woody Harrelson, such a hottie! OMG!
Best late-night or morning-after places Sometimes if I’m in a frisky mood I like to hit whatever after-hours is happening at the moment; I don’t think I should give out any addresses here, though. For the morning after I love going to brunch: my favourites are Origin for the trail mix and the Drake for a breakfast burrito.
Best tip ever A kiss. Priceless.
Favourite drink Right now I’m sitting outside my hotel in Costa Rica enjoying local passion fruit juice with spiced rum. Sensational!
Watch out for When I’m not bartending, I make custom wedding cakes and work as a food stylist. You can check out my work on the cover of Toronto Life‘s Eating and Drinking Guide (on stands until May) and at my website linseybell.com. I love Thursday nights at Amber. We have wicked DJs and get a really diverse, fun crowd. Expect kick-ass music and amazing energy on the dance floor. Whenever there’s a game on, our hockey nights at Harbor Sixty are also something to check out. It gets packed and we cater to all tastes from Innis & Gunn to champagne, come and say hello…. Amber, 119 Yorkville Ave. and Harbour Sixty, 60 Harbour St. Photo:Phillipa Croft