There are just some mixologists that you’ve known for years in the Cayman Islands. They are fixtures, familiar faces and legends in the industry. Even though we know she’d blush at this description, Jennifer Yeo is one such legend.
Jennifer was born in Edmonton, Alberta after her parents moved to Canada from South Korea. Like all good mothers and fathers, they wanted her to be a doctor and play the piano, but she was having none of it. “I did get a bachelor’s degree at the University of Alberta,” she reveals. “I was a psychology major, sociology minor, and I may not [have ended up being] a psychologist, but sometimes I play one behind the bar [laughs].
“I started working in restaurants and bars to pay off my student loan. My parents were in the hotel industry, so I started helping out when I was 18. Since then, I’ve worked as a beer keg girl, in a shooter bar, diners, pubs, as a beach server, in fine dining … lots of food and beverage experience packed into the last 20 years!
“I still love it … making drinks, sharing stories, and having fun,” she says.
Before Jennifer moved to Cayman, she lived in Banff in the Canadian Rockies. It was a beautiful place to be, but after five years of mountain living, she decided to check out the Cayman Islands; that was 15 years ago.
“I traded in my mountain bike and snowboard to live in eternal summer,” she says. “I much prefer summer activities like diving, surfing, kite surfing … everything Cayman has to offer.
“After 15 years of calling Cayman ‘home,’ I am really, really hoping to get my permanent residency!”
Jennifer believes that the islands are the perfect place to eat, drink and be merry – perfect for a career mixologist like herself. She also couldn’t be happier about her latest appointment, at Hemingways on the beach.
“I lucked out, landing a job with the opening team at Hemingways,” she says. “We have a great team, fun atmosphere with DJs and dancing, a beautiful location, a delicious, diverse menu and, of course, amazing cocktails. You really feel like you’re working (or playing) in paradise. It has a great vibe!”
- 1½ ounces Flor de Caña 7yr
- 1 ounce guava juice
- 1 ounce coconut water
- ½ ounce fresh lemon juice
Shake all the ingredients together and pour over ice. Garnish with a lemon wheel and cherry.