Chitchat with Henrik Bendorf

In our chitchat format, we meet someone we like and talk about food, drink, partying, atmosphere and the great life in the pub. This week we meet Henrik Bendorf, bar manager and operations manager at East.

Tell me, what did you do before you came to East?
I have worked in the restaurant industry all my life, including at Hotel Rival, Södra Sällskapet and Ellery on Lidingö.

What is your story to East?
I have of course been a guest here a lot - since it is always open until 03, it is easy to stop here...

What do you want your guests to experience at East ?
Because of the location we have, we get very different types of guests and have to have some tact and read each person. We have to tailor each guest journey and find a harmony around food, music, drinks and the overall experience. When they leave, they should want to come back - we love regulars!

You've changed some of the drinks. Tell me.
We want to show that East is so much more than grog and have made a drink list with real cocktails, but which are actually possible to deliver in the high volumes we have. This approach requires a lot of prep, but is certainly worth it.

You have some funny names for the drinks, where do they come from?
This edition of the drink list is made with summer, colour and Asian flavours in mind. We put the names with personality linked to our staff. Razz Matazz is Rasmus' drink, Jojo Daiö is named after Johanna, Saigon Saga after our Saga and Nori Lee after Lena.

East is open every day until 03. What can guests expect from the music?
Right now we are moving towards not having quite as many DJs, but for guests to recognise their DJs. Fridays and Saturdays should be a bit more commercial, while we can go in a different direction on the other days.

You've done a lot of racing. Tell me!
Competing as a bartender has been a fun thing to get confirmation that I'm with the times, that I'm thinking right, haha. Two years I have been top 10 in the World class in Sweden.

You seem to have an incredibly lovely team bonding. What's the key?
I really want to create close ties between EVERYONE and try to have regular conversations every three months or so and tune in. Everyone should work in an atmosphere that is fun - without taking away from the professionalism, of course.

What do you do when you're not working?
I'm with my kids, of course. But I'm also out and about a lot - food and drink is my big interest.

What would you be doing if you weren't doing what you're doing?
Children and young people. Or maybe something creative - I've studied art and do some writing.

Starter or dessert?

Wine or champagne?

The country or the city?

Friday or Saturday?

Pool or sea?

London or Paris?

Pre-party or after-party?

Daniel or Filip?
I would have worked with Filip, but partied with Dani, haha!

Thanks Henrik! We love that you are part of Brasseriegruppen!

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