Mixologist: Matthew Hemphill of Martini Modern Italian

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

Hometown: Boulder, Colorado

Years behind the bar: 10

When did you move to Columbus?

About four and a half years ago for school at Ohio State. I went to film school at University of Colorado for a number of years and then I just stopped going because I was working in film and TV. I never got my degree, and that's something I always regretted. So here I am back getting my film degree, finally.

What will you do when you finish school?

A good friend of mine just [released] his film, The Cove. It's an awesome film. He's just begging me to get my butt back out there and help him with all kinds of projects he's got burning.

What's your favorite film?

I'm really into old movies. A lot of old films like Double Indemnity, and I'm a big Buster Keaton fan. Charlie Chaplin is my favorite filmmaker of all time.

In terms of recent movies, a film like Memento makes me think I don't have much of a future in filmmaking because it's so brilliant. Seriously, when I got done watching that movie I felt like I'd just taken a calculus exam - I was mentally and physically drained.

What are your other interests?

I am pretty big sports enthusiast. I love hockey.

What do you drink?

Grand Marnier is kind of my vice - just straight up.

Being from Colorado, I'm a huge microbrew fan. My favorite microbrew of all time is Sawtooth Ale from the Left Hand Brewery in Longmont, Colorado. I put that stuff on my cereal if I run out of milk.

How does Columbus compare to Boulder?

To be brutally honest, I really do not like the weather here. Humidity is still foreign to me. However, and I really mean this, the people in this area are generally very nice. You can definitely [see] the Columbus hospitality.

If you could have a drink with anyone, living or dead, who would it be?

I'll go with Mario Lemieux. When you're a kid, you've always got your idols, he's one of mine. Plus, he battled cancer and he's done a lot for Hodgkin's disease.

Italian Grapefruit Gimlet

Matthew Hemphill's Signature Drink

2 oz. Finlandia Grapefruit Vodka

1/2 oz. Aperol

1 1/2 oz. fresh grapefruit juice

1/2 oz. simple syrup

Juice from half a lime

Pour over rocks. Garnish with slice of grapefruit.

Martini Modern Italian

445 N. High St., Short North


Web: martinimodernitalian.com

Is there a Columbus bartender you'd like to meet in Mixologist? E-mail jtigges@columbusalive.com