When Frankie Medina found mixology, his life found purpose
- by Pleepleus :)
Frankie Medina is a well-known mixologist, bar owner, and beverage consultant with over 14 years of experience in the restaurant and bar industry. Born in Brooklyn, New York, and raised in Jersey City, New Jersey, Frankie's journey has not been an easy one. After realizing that he was headed down the wrong path during his final year of high school, he decided to look for a job.
Starting as a bus boy in a small restaurant, Frankie worked his way up to become a server and eventually a bartender at Houlihans, where he discovered his passion for mixology. Over the years, he gained a wealth of experience and expertise, which he now brings to his work not only as a bar owner but as a bar consultant for two of New Jersey's top premier restaurants, Son Cubano located in West New York, NJ, and Ventanas at the Modern located in Fort Lee, NJ, both owned by Duran Entities.
Frankie and his best friend had the opportunity to open their own bar, Five Twelve Hand Crafted Cocktail Bar located in Park, NJ, after working for ten years in the restaurant and bar scene and saving up cash tips. Although moving to a brand new town to start a business and not knowing anyone was a challenge, Frankie was willing to take it on. Just two years into business, they faced the restrictions of Covid-19, which eliminated all bar seating and gatherings, and this took a huge toll on the business. Despite this, Frankie and his business partner did everything they could to keep their business afloat. They were the first in town to offer delivery and contactless pickup of cocktails and food, which helped them overcome the pandemic and survive the struggles every bar in the country had to face.
Frankie is a strong believer in local support from the community and collaborating with neighboring business owners to achieve success. He doesn't see other local businesses as competitors, but as partners to build a strong foundation that all future aspiring business owners can strive in with the support of the community.
When not working, Frankie offers one-on-one classes to students interested in learning how to bartend and start a career in the restaurant industry. He understands how hard it is for truly passionate people to get into bartending without experience and wants to change that. Once the training is complete, Frankie allows the students to work with him at his bar to gain the experience and confidence needed to thrive in their next job.
Frankie recently got married and gives credit to his wife for being by his side throughout his journey of 14+ years and sacrificing their personal time to build his business and career. He always tries to motivate and inspire people in the industry who find themselves at a crossroad, feeling lost, and working most of their life in a restaurant without knowing where their life is going. With focus and determination, he shows that anything is possible.