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Top Adelaide bartender faces theft charges

Top Adelaide bartender faces theft charges

Bartender Vini Wang will face court later this month for allegedly stealing $30,000 from Adelaide bar Hains & Co.

Wang, 26, was arrested by detectives last month and charged with two counts of theft. He's been bailed to appear in Adelaide Magistrates Court.

Hains & Co owner Marcus Motteram claims Wang stole around $1000 a week from the business over several months.

Wang was working as a waiter before Motteram offered to sponsor him to stay in Australia and train him as a bartender.

“They are a trusted employee, one that counts and balances the till in the office at the end of the night,” Motteram told Adelaide Now. “Now I feel deflated, I feel angry.”

Just a week before his arrest, Wang was competing as one of three finalists in the Bacardi Legacy Global cocktail competition in Sydney.

Wang created a drink he called 'Aja' for the competition, which has its roots in the culture of his native Korea.

“‘Aja’ the word is an expression in Korean, almost an equivalent to cheers in Australia, but it has a little deeper meaning to it,” Wang told Australian Bartender. “Normally it’s used to cheer when people are successful at what they do, but at the same time, aja is a kind of a pat on the back of someone who is going through something.

“It was a word my father used to say to me while I was in Australia. I’ve been living in Australia alone for about four years, and yeah, every time I had any ups and downs, my father used to use the word aja to help me overcome, and keep in a good direction.”

Wang was also one of the top 5 Australian finalists in the 2017 Angostura Global Cocktail Challenge.