Nanae Nagata & Naji Rahman

Nanae Nagata & Naji RahmanOccupation:
Proprietors of Heart Cocktail
Time in Japan:
13 years

Nanane:When I started out in the mid ' weren't too many women bartenders in Japan. I worked for six years for a famous bartender and I won several cocktail competitions during that time. In 1990, I won second place at the "Martini Grand Prix" competiton in Portugal.

Naju:I'm from Dhaka, Bangladesh. Prior to meeting Nanae, I had my own Asian food business in Ikebukuro where I sold spices, meats amd so on.

Nanae: We met in a salsa bar about two years ago. At that time I was starting to think about opening my own place. We dicided to do something together. Today, I run the bar and he makes home-cooked Bangladeshi food and is the house DJ.

Naju: I love music, especially soul , and salsa.

Nanae: I also have a live jazz night once a month and I sing. I love jazz because my family are jazz musicians. When I started this place, I naturally wanted to perform , and I thought it would be a nice to have live music. I opened Heart Cocktail in Ginza because I have been working in this are for a long time and know it well. Ginza is known for its expensive bars and clubs. I rearlly wanted to open an inexpensive bar here where people could relax and enjoy themselves.

Naju: I think running a successful business in Japan is 50% luck and 50% real business activity.

Business is good, thogh we work long hours.
Nanae: Working together is okay. Customers who have known me for a long time as a bartende expect to see me in my formal attire then, all of a sudden I'm working in this funky atomosphere with this guy standing beside me.

Naju: We enjoy the business and have fun making our custmoers happy!

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