/mix-ol'-o-gist/ n. An employee who mixes and serves alcoholic drinks at a bar.
Shall I address the white elephant in the room?
/bar'-tend-er/ n. One who mixes and serves alcoholic drinks at a bar.
What's the difference between the two? According to the American Heritage dictionary, absolutely nothing. According to Erica Lancelotti, pictured above with me (she's in black) there's a huge difference. Ms. Lancelotti has been in the press a bit, mostly the subject of chiding jokes, all geared towards the rumors of her being an old "girlfriend" to Ryan Seacrest. I will not insert the obvious joke - I'm thinking what you're thinking. Aside from her alleged love affair with Seacrest, she's an entrepreneur, branching out to form the company Bar Candy. She built a roster of hotties that work as bartenders - er, mixologists for private parties.
I ran into Ms. Lancelotti at the launch party for the Carl's Jr. Kentucky Bourbon Burger, where she created the Kentucky Bourbon Twist cocktail to accompany the burger. "So what's the difference between a mixolologist and a bartender?" I asked her. She went on to tell me how mixologists specialize in flavors and how they compliment one another, plus mixologists are driven by a passion for creating innovative cocktails. "Uh huh," I said, trying to give her the benefit of the doubt. Just because she "dated" Ryan Seacrest doesn't make her a compulsive liar.
She then went on to describe how she loves Miami and was influenced by the flavors there. She described a mango cocktail with chili and lime (chile y limon), and it intrigued me. Then I tasted the Kentucky Bourbon Twist and was convinced. But since she's allowed to be called a mixologist, I would like to allow these new job titles as well:
Pool Boy: Backyard Aqualogist
Factory Worker: Laverne and Shirologist