Barry Jackson of Acquafarina R egional bar director Barry Jackson is a busy man. Managing the bar at the luxurious upscale Acquafarina—think foie gras, Wagyu beef, caviar and black truffles—on West Georgia Street, as well as the multi- faceted Per Se Social Corner—think tapas, pizza, gelato and espresso—in Yaletown, keeps him on his toes. With roughly 20 years of experience, Jackson has worked behind the wood at some of the province’s most prestigious eateries. When asked to join the opening team at Acquafarina in November of 2020, he jumped at the opportunity to work with one of Vancouver’s growing and influential restaurant groups. WHERE ARE YOU FROM AND WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO VANCOUVER? I was born in Langley, BC. It was there I worked in nightclubs and at a place called Sonoma Grill & Lounge where I learned the bartending basics. After that I moved to Whistler for five years where I worked at La Brasserie and Trattoria di Umberto. After the Olympics, I was over Whistler. I wanted to challenge myself and move to a big city, so in 2011 I came to Vancouver. I worked at Gotham Steakhouse for almost 10 years—first as a bartender, then as bar manager. CAN YOU SHARE ANY
EMBARRASSING MOMENTS FROM YOUR EARLY YEARS OF BARTENDING?
Yes, back at the Sonoma Grill, I was 19 years old and it was one of my first weeks there. We kept boxed wine above the bar, and I swapped an empty one for
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