Introducing: Ben Hickey

Venue: Kit & Kaboodle
ADDRESS: 33-35 Darlinghurst Rd Kings Cross
PHONE: 02 93687333

This story appeared in the November issue of Australian Bartender magazine.


When Jason Williams (The Keystone Group) approached us about ‘Introducing’ one of his bar managers, Ben Hicky, his obvious passion got him across the line. “Ben makes his own syrups, is constantly reading, always working on cocktails and conducts training regularly for his bar team,” Williams told us. “He is a leader within that venue and has helped create a great team there. He is always positive and always asking questions. Not an easy attitude to have when working in nightclubs.” So take it away Ben…

Love your job. Love your cocktails. Google lots.”


How long have you been bartending?

“Fourish years.”

Before you were bartending what were you doing with yourself?

“At uni being poor.”

What is your proudest moment behind the bar?

“Creating the world’s sweetest passion fruit and vanilla Caipiroska”

And most embarrassing?

“Realising sometime later that I had created the world’s sweetest passionfruit and vanilla Caipiroska.”

How do you prepare yourself for success in a cocktail competition?

“Have as many people try my drink as possible to see if they really like it or are just being nice! Also a few drinks beforehand for courage doesn’t go astray.”

Where have you worked previously?

“A few pubs in Sydney, and ski resort bar in the US and the roof-top at Kings Cross Hotel.”

What’s your advice for a young aspiring bartender?

“Love your job. Love your cocktails. Google lots.”


What’s been your favourite bar to work in?

Kit & Kaboodle – where I am now.”

What’s your favourite bar gadget?

“The tea towel stuck in my belt.”

What’s your favourite city to visit?

“New York, New York.”

What’s your favourite movie?

City of God

What’s your favourite song?

Once in a Life Time – Talking Heads

What’s your favourite sport?

Rugby Union or Motorcycle racing”


Describe your fantasy bar.

“The bar from Eau De Vie but on a beach in the Caribbean islands.”

Can you tell us some of your favourite bars to visit?

“Anywhere that is still open at 7am after work – Goldfish and Dive Bar KXH in the Cross. Going out – Hunky Dory, Flinders Hotel and Eau De Vie.”

What is your favourite product to work with at the moment and why?

“Rye whiskey. Sweet like a bourbon, complex like a Scotch.”

What do you drink to…

Unwind after a long shift?

“Asahi and a rum shot.”

Impress a lady?

“Asahi and a rum shot.”

If you could have a drink with one person (alive or dead) who would it be and why?

“It would have to be Earnest Hemingway, the man was a legend. Also I would love to know his preferred recipe for a Daiquiri #3.”

Other Stuff:

What was the last book you bought?

Ubik by Phillip K. Dick – Very good.”

If you could have a superhuman power what would it be – why?

“The power of permanent awake-ness. Working at night and having a life during the day.”

If you were to be something other than a bartender, what would it be and why?

“A vet.”

Who’s your hero?

“Stephen Colbert, Kurt Vonnegut and Spike Milligan”

What products do you think will be hot over the coming year?

“Mezcal for sure.”

Last drink ever – what would it be?

“A very large one and a very strong one.”

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