Bartenders Bible

Papi from Savona Thinks Bartenders Should Shake Hard and With Passion

Pablo “Papi” Hurtado Photo: Savona

Bartenders spend most of their time, well, tending to you. They make you drinks, make you laugh and convince you that your drunken babble is nothing short of genius. Or at least the good ones do. In our weekly series, Bartenders Bible, we let the folks manning the speedrails and taps around town have their say. This week we hear from Pablo “Papi” Hurtado, who you’ll find behind the bar at Savona. Papi tells us which James Bond portrayer is a generous tipper, which liquor he’s named his dog after and reveals his preferred shaking technique.

Name: Pablo “Papi” Hurtado

Location: Bar Savona, Gulph Mills, PA

Bartender or mixologist?: Master mixologist - I love to play with my syrups to create cocktails!

Tenure at Savona?: Two years, six months, two weeks, three days plus this evening.

Total years behind the bar: Around 12 years. I started at some of the best bars in London before I moved to the area.

Favorite beer: Paulaner Hefeweizen

Favorite liquor: TEQUILA - What else?! I even named my dog after it!

Favorite cocktail: I don’t drink cocktails, but if I have to, I like a really good old-fashioned made with tequila.

Your best customer in five words or less: Those who enjoy my drinks

Your worst customer five words or less: Sorry, will tip next time!

All bartenders should know a good joke. What’s yours?: Come see me at Savona and ask me to tell you my Cuban joke.

Have you ever had to break up a fight at your bar? What was it about?: Yes, in London. Two brothers had been drinking all night and were hammered. Both wanted to pay; a fist fight ensued. In the end, I told them I would call their mother if they did not stop. They split the bill.

It’s okay to sleep with customers. Yes or no?: Only one, my wife!

The best tip you ever got?: A £100 tip from Sir Sean Connery at a private function in Ireland. Also, sharing a bottle of Crystal with Cuba Gooding Jr. at a London bar.

What’s the best part of the job?: Empty glasses, big smiles and a full tip jar!

What’s the worst part of the job?: Making coffees and rude customers


What’s the worst thing you’ve ever seen at your bar?: Someone ordered Louis XIII on the rocks!

What’s your patented drunk-handling technique?: I say “the police are on their way and taking names and addresses! Time to go!”

Give us one of your bartending tips-of-the-trade: I always complain when I see a bartender shake like a sissy. Shake hard and with passion until the shaker freezes!

Why should people get a drink from you rather than the bartender down the block?: Because in the words of Craig LaBan, “Papi Hurtado’s creative cocktails are worth an imbiber’s notice.”

Where do you like to go for a drink when you’re on the other side of the bar?: Teresa’s Café and Verdad for a beer and a shot of tequila.

What’s the secret to being a great bartender?: Well, it would not be a secret anymore if I tell you! But I can give you a tip: be curious and passionate!

Know a bartender who should be part of the Bartenders Bible? Tips gladly accepted here.

Papi from Savona Thinks Bartenders Should Shake Hard and With Passion