A lifetime of hospitality has led this entrepreneur to simultaneously open two of New York’s best new bars while also having to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Try as you might, you will never find bar owner Milos Zica in a bad mood. It could be because he grew up in his uncle’s hotel in Montenegro and also learned from his Mom, a fellow hospitality professional, that positivity is absolutely infectious. After living 16 years in New York, Milos is still thankful to be here and is just about to truly get started making his mark on the industry.
For the past 14 years, you could find Milos behind the bar at the prestigious West Village cocktail spot, Employees Only. It’s there that he learned what it took to be successful in the ultra-competitive New York bar scene. He started from scratch as a stocker and at the service bar learning the art of the show. He also learned how the principal bartenders built relationships with their clientele and that these important bonds lead to loyalty and repeat visits.
Fast forward to 2017 when Milos started discussions to be co-owner and operator of a project at McCarren Park in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. A sweeping industrial space with a majestic staircase will soon be transformed into “Fandi Mata” (which means “to connect” in Romani). It will be the ultimate gypsyset/bohemian gathering spot filled with the vibrant energy of nomadic explorers. Set to feature a 35 ft main bar, 2nd floor mezcaleria with one-of-a-kind imported mezcal, a flower shop, live acoustic music, pizza cafe, and additional outdoor space.
While bringing the new Brooklyn project to life, Milos also started working on a unique opportunity upstate in Beacon, NY. Hudson Valley Food Hall was looking for a bar to anchor their new outpost and Milos was brought in as co-owner to help develop the concept. The experience is something that has never been seen before in Dutchess County. The Roosevelt Bar initially opened its doors in January of this year to much fanfare. Unique cocktails, fresh ingredients, swanky setting and stunning artwork had the locals excited. They will just have to wait a little bit longer to indulge in this new experience until it’s safe to congregate after COVID-19.
Once New York relaxes its COVID-19 rules, you will see Milos again at Employees Only, Fandi Mata, and The Roosevelt Bar. Nothing will ever stop him from the hard work of making his dreams a reality, and as long as it’s safe to serve, you will see him taking care of his loyal patrons.
Take in some of Milos’ favorite New York spots:
Best New York Pizza: Gnocco on East 10th St in the East Village. Chef Federico’s specialty is Roman style crispy pizza with the freshest ingredients.
Best New York Museum: The Met on 5th Ave. There is something for everyone there and it’s the best place to take visiting friends and family.
Best New York Park: Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Gorgeous scenery, The Botanic Garden, and a beautiful lake are just a few reasons.