While bars across the Northwest Territories are shut down and more people are working from home, what’s a bartender to do?
Skye Plowman usually works behind the bar at the Explorer Hotel in Yellowknife. Now she’s sharing her skills for those that imbibe by making quarantinis in her kitchen and sharing the videos on Facebook.
Plowman said the posts have garnered positive reception. They have the added benefit of allowing her to reconnect with old friends.
“[They] are coming out of the woodwork being like, ‘I love this, I’m living for these videos, it’s so great to hear your voice, it’s been so long,’” she said.
So far, Plowman has shared how to make a raspberry gin fizz and a margarita. She said people have also asked for her Manhattan recipe, and she hopes to highlight companies helping those in the service industry that are struggling during the Covid-19 pandemic.
That includes Campari, which donated $1 million to Another Rally, a non-profit that raises emergency funds for hospitality workers.
Aviation Gin, owned by Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds, is donating $10,000 to the Canadian Professional Bartenders’ Association along with a 30 percent tip for every online order made during April.
Reynolds and his wife Blake Lively donated $1 million to food banks in Canada and the US.
“Hopefully, using this weird platform that I’ve created for myself can get the word about that out,” Plowman said.
While the bar at the Explorer Hotel may be closed, Plowman said she’s thankful to still have work.
Several people from the Kitikmeot region of Nunavut, who travelled to Yellowknife for medical care or to give birth, are currently self-isolating at the hotel.
“I’ve been taking care of a lot of mothers with babies,” Plowman said. “It’s just nice that they can sort-of keep everybody in one spot and can streamline making sure that they’re fed and sheltered and taken care of.”
Plowman said some people have asked if they can tip her for her video bartending skills like they would at the bar. While she appreciates the offer, she suggests people donate to local organizations or businesses that need help instead.
“There are folks that need a tip out there more than I do right now,” she said.