Spice Is Nice

Arriving in the U.S. from Venezuela a scant year ago, Cantina La Veinte bartender Marco Nava is already shaking up our city’s conception of what makes a top-tier Magic City margarita.
Text by Ryan Jarrell Photos by Edward Leal | May 8, 2018 | People

Marco Nava’s story is the type of tale told over and over again across the length and breadth of our sun-soaked shores. An emigre enthusiastic about the possibilities in our great nation, Nava converted a lifetime of career experience in his native Venezuela not only into a vocation, but a top position at Cantina La Veinte. Since then, he’s been crafting a strict work ethic with an artistry found only in those truly passionate about their craft. Head bartender at Icon Brickell’s devastatingly delicious Cantina La Veinte, Nava is proud of the creative corner the restaurant has etched out among our city’s saloon scene. “Cantina La Veinte is a restaurant proud of its Mexican influence, and our cocktail menu showcases that,” he says. “Our offerings are really brought to life by the premium tequilas and mezcals we stock.” Head wrangler of an institution notorious for its convivial atmosphere, Nava believes his career is composed of a heady mix of two parts mixologist with one part bon vivant. “The experience behind the bar is amazing, and more so when it’s behind a bar like ours,” he says. “Just being there, making cocktails and providing entertainment for our customers…that’s exactly where I belong!”

La Mezclarita
2 oz Montelobos Mezcal
1 oz Passion Fruit Pureé
1 oz Fresh Lime Juice
.5 oz Agave Nectar
1 Egg White