Alex Valencia began his career in the service industry in 2003, and had the opportunity to follow his true passion – mixology – three years later. In 2008, he started working alongside some of New York City’s top-rated mixologists from bars such as PDT, Little Branch, and Apotheke. During that time, Alex was able to hone his skills as well as learn and create new techniques and recipes that have become his signatures.
Alex’s limitless creativity and talent quickly garnered recognition from industry peers, local and international press, as well as extensive praise from the public. In 2008, Alex was part of the opening team of trendy Latin fusion eatery Yerba Buena in New York City’s East Village. Following the success of the first location, Alex was named head bartender and bar manager at the second Yerba Buena in the West Village, where he was tasked with creating the restaurant’s cocktail program. Alex received many accolades from publications such as The New York Times, New York Magazine, The New Yorker, and many more for his work at both Yerba Buena locations.
In 2012, Alex began working as the head bartender at The Flatiron Room, a beautiful whisky bar with more than one thousand whiskies. Shortly thereafter, his whisky recipes were published in the book Whiskey Distilled: A Populist Guide to the Water of Life, by Heather Greene. Most recently you would have found Alex behind the bar at Bathtub Gin, a famous speakeasy located in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City, where he proudly featured some of his newest recipes on the menu.
Aside from showcasing his masterful cocktail skills at some of the city’s leading bars and restaurants, Alex has been educating the public in the art of creating cocktails through his mixology classes since 2010, and has been a mentor to several novice bartenders. In 2011, he was nominated by a local news publication as one of New York’s best bartenders, and has won various awards at national mixology competitions over the years. Aside from his continuously growing list of awards, the most important honor for Alex is the opportunity to get to know and form lasting friendships with mixologists around the world who share his dedication to the craft.
Alex’s honest passion for cocktails guides his career and personal life, and his dream to one day open his own mixology bar has been fulfilled at La Contenta. Alex enjoys spending his leisure time cooking, dining out, and discovering new bars and restaurants, as well as devoting time to his daughter and wife of 14 years, who are his biggest fans.