Muzzem “Kofil” Hussain, a bartender at OTG restaurant Baba Bar recently received the “Impression Makers” award in Philadelphia International Airport’s (PHL) Employee Recognition Program. This award recognizes customer-facing employees who provide direct customer service to passengers.
As a bartender in Terminal B’s Baba Bar, Hussain takes drink orders from guests while providing exceptional customer service. The “Serbian Sombrero” and “Brazilian Smash” are some of the many drinks Hussain serves guests. He also takes food orders and is responsible for closing the bar.
“It’s a great experience working here. I enjoy this job. I’m happy coming in and happy when I leave,” said Hussain. “OTG is a great company to work for; I like the people, hospitality, and management.”
Hussain has worked at the airport for 18 months, rotating between OTG-operated restaurants Local Tavern, LOVE Grill, and Independence Prime before joining Baba Bar. His energetic spirit naturally draws people into the bar, which is beautifully decorated with various colorful drinks. He begins his shift by connecting with the morning bartender to figure out what he needs during his shift.
At the airport, Hussain works four days a week, beginning his shift at noon and ending his shift when the last flight leaves the terminal, anytime between 9 p.m. – 12 a.m. He has 17 years of experience within the hospitality industry, was trained as a barback at two New York City restaurants, and trained barbacks once he became a bartender.
In his recommendation of Hussain, OTG PHL Beverage Manager Justin Berlin said, “Kofil exhibits all the characteristics of a great ambassador for the Philly Airport and OTG restaurants. He is consistently getting great feedback from the passengers. It’s not uncommon to see him helping a passenger find their flight and then showing them exactly where the gate is all with the most welcoming attitude you can find.”
Berlin also emphasized a comment Hussain received from a passenger who called him the best airport bartender she’s ever had and even rated Hussain within her top 10 outside of traveling. She also noted his excellent customer service skills that made her feel welcomed and appreciated as a guest.
Hussain has a friendly personality and enjoys interacting with people from across the country and asking them about the different cities they have visited. When he isn’t working, he enjoys trying different brunch spots in Philadelphia, socializing with friends, and playing soccer.
At OTG, Hussain will be able to join an upcoming employee roundtable where staff will be able to discuss the day-to-day operations of the restaurants with management, suggest solutions and impact change within the company.
“OTG management is always helpful,” said Hussain. “All of us at Baba Bar work as a great team. I love teaching my coworkers how to make different cocktails. We communicate well with one another.”
Bartending is undoubtedly no easy feat. A few weeks ago, Hussain served over 160 guests after their plane was delayed. Although Baba Bar was about to close for the night, it remained open. Hussain swiftly served them while maintaining his energetic work ethic with a big smile.
“This is my first time working at an airport, and I enjoy it more here than at any other place I’ve ever worked.”
The PHL Employee Recognition Program was established by the airport’s Guest Experience (GX) Department. Honorees are nominated by their peers and selected by the GX Council Steering Committee’s Employee Conduct and Recognition Committee. To nominate an employee click here. For more information about the program, click here.