2020 Seattle Rising Star Bartender Jennifer Akin of Rumba

2020 Seattle Rising Star Bartender Jennifer Akin of Rumba

1112 Pike St
Seattle, WA 98101




Click Here to Support Jen's Fight Against Ovarian Cancer

Jennifer Akin grew up on a farm in Lawrence, Kansas, with a talent for horseback riding. She enrolled in William Woods University on an equestrian scholarship, but left her freshman year for a full-time horse training job. For the next ten years, Akin was in and out of school, training horses, competing, and working as a barista and a beer trough girl. When she moved to Kansas City, Missouri to finish her degree in biology and chemistry at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, she worked at a beer bar, a Mexican cantina, and 715 cocktail bar back in Lawrence. 

Akin graduated in 2012 and moved to Seattle, hoping to attend the University of Washington School of Medicine. She landed a bartending job at Local 360, where she quickly fell in love with the beverage industry and quit horsing around. She left all other career aspirations behind, and leapt head-long into the bartending world. Akin joined the United States Bartenders Guild, and for the following five years gained as much experience as possible. She worked as a bartender at Oliver’s Twist, Tavern Law, and their speakeasy Needle & Thread. In 2015, she moved to Ashland, Oregon, to become the opening bar manager of Alchemy Restaurant and Bar at The Winchester Inn. One year later, she returned to Seattle for a role at her dream bar, Rumba. Now as the bar manager and general manager, Akin is training the next generation of great Seattle bartenders and her immense love for rum is ever-present on the tropics-inspired menu.