For a bartender, stepping into the role of bar manager is always going to be challenging. And stepping into that role at Rumba, the renowned Seattle rum bar, just as it’s celebrating its 10th anniversary? Oof, not easy at all—but Josh Ibañez is up to the task.
The Houston native first honed his bartending skills at Better Luck Tomorrow before heading to Seattle in 2019, and has aligned those skills with his new home city’s cocktail culture by working behind the bar at Rumba and (2020 Imbibe 75 alum) The Doctor’s Office ever since.
“I think the recognition that Rumba gets nationally and globally is immense, and it’s a lot to take in,” Ibañez says. “But I’m really excited to take it on, and I feel ready for it.”