Mixologist/Bartender/Cantinero Gustavo Ortega-Oyarzun grew up in Celaya, Mexico, where he learned at an early age, helping his mother cook, the importance of using the best and freshest ingredients from her garden. She would explain everything as she added it and described what element that ingredient brought to the dish. From this, he learned how to balance and enhance flavors.
In college, Gustavo majored in architecture and interior design. After university, he worked for Sabores Mexico where he collaborated with restaurants in NYC to create and educate people about the authentic food and flavors of Mexico. This experience was the beginning of his cocktail career. He started encouraging bartenders to use only the freshest juices and ingredients and to experiment with different spices and fruits from Mexico. Then in 2012, he formed The Art of Drink, the new trending consulting and beverage program specializing in combining agave spirits with the flavors of his native land. His creations aren't just limited to sweet, sour, and bitter. Instead, they more resemble Mexican candy including sweet, sour, bitter, spice, smokiness, and umami.
Upon creating a new cocktail, he relies on his architecture education and his love of food. The spirit is the platform, the juices and liquors form the frame, the sugar/spice are the layouts, and the finishing touches are the decor.
Gustavo is currently selling a line of salts and syrups for specialty cocktails as well as creating cocktails for Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Coronado Springs and Disney Springs with Rick Bayles at Frontera Cocina.
Gustavo has worked with some of the best International Chefs and Mixologists worldwide, As his time acting as a Global Brand Ambassador for a brand line of mezcal, he traveled around the world educating consumers and industry professionals about the different types of agave spirits where he successfully built lasting relationships with sales teams both nationally and internationally. He is currently owner of one of the best Mexican Restaurants in Brooklyn, Casa Publica blends traditional Mexican home cooking with dishes found in the country’s mercados. Our evolving menu is complimented with a variety of colorful and flavorful cocktails, Mexican wines and micheladas, all just one block from McCarren Park.