Updated: September 1, 2005

When you think of determination combined with originality a few names come up, one being… Mr. Francesco Leoni. He has a style all his own. He commands the stage with his strong presence and huge smile as he combines different combinations into a silky smooth performance. So stop practicing those elbow bumps and mix up a nice Skyy cocktail mixed with some Finest Call and enjoy ;-). Age? 26.

Where are you from? I’m from Chivari (Key’ av ar ee, for who doesn’t know italian), Genoa, Italy.

How long have you’ve been Bartending? 8 years.

And Flair Bartending? Almost 6 years.

Where do you work? I work at Shadow Bar at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, USA.

What got you into Flair Bartending? A big opportunity.. I was in the right place at the time…..Life Style Bar inside the 5 stars Maritim Hotel in Germany, when my Bar Manager and he’s Assistant decide to take off to London and recruit Mr. Barrett Young Ex Master Bartender T.G.I. Friday’s and get him to do a training to the staff…………THANKS AGAIN GUYS!!!!!!!

How did you start out learning to Flair? I was working in Germany at the Life Style Bar inside the 5 stars Maritim Hotel in Frankfurt and my Bar manager had the great idea to recruit a Master Bartender from T.G.I. Fridays U.K. and bring him down to Germany to train the Staff……got completely hooked after that, as you can tell.

Why do you Flair now? It’s My Life !!! If it wasn’t for flair bartending, I wouldn’t be able to travel the world and see places such as Dubai, Fiji, 8 different island in the Caribbean, the all Central America, the States ect… ect… and believe me, there is not better feeling to travel the world and getting to know people that may not speak your language but they have the same passion as you do.

Francesco_quote1Describe to us your style of Flair? I’m very bad on judging myself , but what I have been trying to do through the years is to be very innovative, smooth, creative and increase my level of difficulty.

What makes you stand out from other Flair Bartenders? Well it’s always hard to judge my self but through past competition scores and judges comments it’s seems that my strong points are originality, smoothness and difficulty. I also have a classic mixology background which I feel is very very beneficial behind the bar.




Tell us about the Flair scene in Italy compared to the Flair scene in Las Vegas? The Flair scene in Italy is pretty small but there are a lot of guys practicing, unfortunately they don’t have the opportunity to work in Flair Bars since there are none and need to wait for competitions even that there aren’t enough.

Franseco_friends1What do you hope to get out of Flair? I got out of Flair way way more that I have ever expected it, such as traveling the world getting to know a lot of beautiful people, learning different languages and overall great life achievement.

What is Flairhouse and what products and services does it offer? Flair House is a Company created from 3 guys that they want to offer their passion, knowledge and skills to the public doing great individual and staff training, design drink menus and tune-up private parties. Is not really concentrating about selling products but thanks to Flairco.com and Flairmonkey Media is holding Flair bottles and great footage from Battle of the Flair Gods 1 & 2.


FBC_Video_ButtonWhat is your favorite Flair Bartending competition? I am such a fence sitter. I like them all. Every King of the Ring, because is more my style of competition since I was brought up with the Roadhouse mentality.Legends of Bartending competition although is also a great challenge and I respect it a lot.

How does it feel to keep finishing in the top three places at Legends but never winning first place? First of all, finishing in the top three places at Legends of Bartending is an unbelievable feeling because it pays off all the hard work and so much concentration that such competition needs.


Who do you look up to in this Sport? Leigh Miller (U.K.) T.G.I.Fridays World Champion 1996 , Nicholas St. Jean for his creativity and originality and Christian Delpech for his determination but there are so many guys that I also respect.
What advice would you give to some of the new people wanting to get into Flair Bartending? Guys….if you like to travel, to meet people that they have the same passion that you have but in a completely different site of the world, if you like to improve your bartending knowledge, what you are waiting for, get some bruises here and there and do it……..and most of all, enjoy loving it!

Tell us about where you work? You’ve never been?!!!! You don’t know what you missing!!! Great, solid and fun Bar team, great drinks, in a upscale, entertaining atmosphere. You’ll love it as I do!

Francesco_quote2Why didn’t you compete at Nations this year and why do you think there was a low turn out from competitors? I didn’t go because I was traveling a lot throughout Europe in April and May so I decide that it was …..WORK TIME!

Oh …..also because the organization give me an opportunity to be invited to Nations, 15 days prior to the event!

When people really want to compete in any kind of competition they travel miles, they go in foreign countries, they save money to afford the airfare, entry-fee, place where to stay and if they didn’t do that for Nations means they had other priorities or didn’t really feel like be a part of it.



What are your thoughts on owning a particular move and someone stealing your move, Is it a compliment or a bad thing? We’ve all been beginners …….but you should be able to reach a spot, that your goal is to create your own move, your own style and you work hard for it, so basically at depends of who those your move and when.

What are your plans now? I want to keep on traveling and see the rest of the world……ah, last but not least keep loving what I do.

Francesco_quote3Tell us about your first Flair Competition and your experiences there, What were you feeling, Did everything go as planned? I was a barback @ T.G.I. Friday’s Haymarket in London, U.K. and from the moment I step on Roadhouse stage in late 1999, when I finish my 5 minutes routine, (those days only Bottle -Tin, which I love) I couldn’t remember a single move or combination that I just performed but I had the biggest smile in my face when I walked down.

How often do you practice? I feel like practicing everyday but normally I practice 3 o 4 days a week. 8 hrs a day before a competition.



Describe to us what your ultimate Flair competition would consist of? In Pigion Beach, Antigua ( Eastern Caribbean ) with the crowd of King of the Ring 2, no prize money but just a big reunion of Flair Bartenders.

What are your predictions for Quest this year? This days……..they are so many talent out there that I wouldn’t know where to start.

jeepIf you couldn’t bartend anymore, what would your line of work be? I would be always involved in the Food and Beverage Industry.

What is your favorite drink? Moooojito and E-poo: the recipe is from B@1 in Battersea, London,U.K., Leigh Miller’s Bar.

Collins glass
1 1/4 oz. vodka
3 oz. cranberry juice
float with red bull
1 lime wedge (I take 2).

Thanks again to Rob and Rick at Flairbar.


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