Barry Halstead – Luc Belaire Brands

I have had the privilege of working with Boris Ivan over the last 7 years on various ventures that we have both undertaken.

Boris is highly regarded in the industry not only as one of the best cocktail innovators, bar managers and masters of his trade, but he is also known for his huge personality, his welcoming smile and more than anything his willingness to drive this industry forward via his skills, application and ever evolving appreciation for the products that are being made available to him on a day to day basis.

From Soho hotel, to Hush, to Galvin at Windows and all the wonderful places in-between, Boris is exemplary when it comes to his attention to detail and his passion is infectious throughout all of his staff and the people around him.

No matter how busy I have ever found him, Boris has always taken the time to listen and help the many brands, people and colleagues keen for his opinion, influence and ideas.

Whether it was Armand de Brignac Champagne or my Luc Belaire brands, Boris was always passionate about supporting not only the brand, but the people behind them.

There are very few in the industry who can apply themselves in all environments with such grace and professionalism. Tirelessly and effortlessly, Boris reminds everyone around him just how wonderful our industry is and just how privileged we should all feel, to be part of it.

I feel honoured to know Boris and my admiration for him knows no bounds, not only do I consider him one of the foremost authorities in the drinks trade but I am lucky enough to call him my friend, a good friend.

The drinks industry is a far better place with Boris Ivan in it and I have no doubt that he will continue to set the high-test of standards, not just as a bar manager, mixologist and colleague but as an exemplary human being and friend.

My only regret is that I never got to work behind the bar with him!

We should all take a leaf out of his book.