Spirit Cruises Summer 2019 Leaderboard

Behind the Bar: Adam Judeh of Fond

by Drink Philly on Jan 31, 2019 in Culture

 
This time on Behind the Bar, we spoke to Adam Judeh at South Philly’s Fond. Judeh, who grew up in both Holland and Jordan, relocated to the United States in 1999 and lived in California before finding his way to Philadelphia. We talked to Judeh about Fond’s origins, his language skills, and where he likes to grab a drink after work.
 
Drink Philly (DP): Tell me a little bit about the place.
Adam Judeh (AJ): Fond is an American brasserie with a French influence. Chef Lee (Styer) worked with Georges Perrier at Le Bec Fin before working in the kitchen at Lacroix, and he then opened Fond nine years ago in the space where Laurel is now. He relocated here six years ago for a larger dining room, full bar, wine list, and a great view of the singing fountain.
 
DP: Have you bartended elsewhere?
AJ: I was a manager in the hotel industry for most of my career — I was the general manager at XIX at the Bellevue for six years. I left hotels in 2016 and joined the team at 1 Tippling Place, working alongside and learning from Myles Carroll, Chris Zingler, Rich Beury, and Dan Hamm, before joining the team here in early 2018.
 
 
DP: What’s trendy right now?
AJ: Not sure if this is a trend, but we’ve seen more requests for and interest in mezcal cocktails, as well as variations on the classics like Old Fashioneds and Manhattans.
 
DP: What are some trends you wish would die?
AJ: Following trends. We try to focus our attention on creating drinks that complement the menu, make use of seasonal ingredients, and make our guests happy.
 
DP: Any predictions about where the industry might go next?
AJ: I hope that the “no waste” movement maintains traction and creates momentum in a meaningful way.
 
DP: One unexpected fact about you?
AJ: I speak three languages fluently, including Arabic and Dutch.
 
 
DP: Favorite beer?
AJ: I enjoy pale ales, sours, and dry ciders.
 
DP: Favorite liquor?
AJ: Brown liquor, to work with and to drink. I keep Blanton’s at home.
 
DP: Favorite cocktail?
AJ: A rye Old Fashioned.
 
 
DP: What’s your favorite kind of customer?
AJ: Somebody who’s open to experiencing new things, whether that means food or drink. Being respectful always helps.
 
DP: What do you think the essentials are for a good home bar?
AJ: Quality liquor — it doesn’t have to be top shelf, because as long as the spirits are well made, they will taste good in a cocktail. Fresh juice is key in creating a well balanced cocktail; no store bought mixers. Good vermouth and some bitters go a long way.
 
 
DP: Where do you go for a drink when you’re not working?
AJ: If I’m in Center City, I go see Chris Zingler at Destination Dogs or Dan Hamm at Giuseppe & Sons. In the neighborhood after work, I love seeing Rich Beury and David at Stateside or Harry Jamison and Bohdan Darway at Townsend. We love to play pool at Watkins Drinkery with “Nice Guy Mike” and the rest of the crew there. For a late night drink, you’ll us find at the counter with Gabrielle and Jorgen at Palizzi Social Club.
 
DP: What’s the secret to being a great bartender?
AJ: It’s mostly customer service, but also, a passion for creating memorable experiences — creating the experience around the guest rather than the bartender is key. Knowing your products and how they work together facilitates the creation of those lasting experiences.
 

The New Hat, created by Fond's head bartender Carnie Gilfillan (charred orange syrup, bitters, bourbon) 
 
DP: If you could have a drink with any famous person, living or dead, who would it be and what would you drink?
AJ: A bottle of Le Cigare Volant with winemaker Randall Graham from Bonny Doon.
 
Photos via Drink Philly

Tags: Behind the Bar
Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
Get Ready For the Annual Drink Philly Summer Boat Party, July 25

Get Ready For the Annual Drink Philly Summer Boat Party, July 25

On Thursday, July 25, prepare to hoist anchor for a three-hour tour of crazy proportions. We'll sail down the Delaware River in style with a three-hou...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 11, 2019
Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2019

Best Bars for Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2019

Whether it's to enjoy the first warm breezes of spring or the unexpected sunshine of a crisp day in fall, Philadelphia is full of great places to drin...read more ›

by Drink Philly Apr 11, 2019
SPONSORED
Bloomsday, An All-Day Cafe with a Wine Shop, is Now Open in Headhouse Square

Bloomsday, An All-Day Cafe with a Wine Shop, is Now Open in Headhouse Square

Bloomsday, an all-day cafe with a focus on local, sustainable food and drink that houses its own wine shop, is...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 11, 2019
The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

The Best Cocktail Bars in Philadelphia

Here it is - the definitive list of Philadelphia's best cocktail bars....read more ›

by Drink Philly Dec 13, 2017
Philly's Best Happy Hours: a.kitchen's $25 Bottles of Wine, $8 Spritzes, & $6 Snacks, Seven Days a Week

Philly's Best Happy Hours: a.kitchen's $25 Bottles of Wine, $8 Spritzes, & $6 Snacks, Seven Days a Week

This week, we focused on a.kitchen, the sister restaurant of a.bar which is also located in the heart of Ritte...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 10, 2019
Enjoy Neighborhood-Wide Specials, Music, Art, Local Spirits, Great Food, & More at 2nd Saturdays in Northern Liberties

Enjoy Neighborhood-Wide Specials, Music, Art, Local Spirits, Great Food, & More at 2nd Saturdays in Northern Liberties

On the second Saturday of each month, Northern Liberties will now host their monthly 2nd Saturday series from ...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 10, 2019
Independence Day 2019: Where to Celebrate July 4th in Philadelphia

Independence Day 2019: Where to Celebrate July 4th in Philadelphia

It's time once again for the Fourth of July, and there's no better place to celebrate than in the city where t...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 3, 2019
Jet Wine Bar Opens an Outdoor Wine Garden Next Door on South Street

Jet Wine Bar Opens an Outdoor Wine Garden Next Door on South Street

South Street's Jet Wine Bar now has its very own wine garden right next door to the main bar, located at 1525 ...read more ›

by Drink Philly Jul 3, 2019
Where to Host a Private Event in Philadelphia

Where to Host a Private Event in Philadelphia

Whether it's for the holidays or you have a special birthday coming up, Philadelphia has some amazing options when it comes to event spaces. ...read more ›

by Drink Philly Nov 26, 2018
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close