Sunday, 18 March 2018

The Oceanic Chill Out Bar - Everything you need from a bar

Step in, sit down and relax in the original and only true chill out bar in Kalamaki. OPENING TIMES:- Welcome to the blog of The Oceanic bar. Here's a little history for you to read. After Managing a bar complex in Argassi called Tropicana from 2001 to 2006 i decided to open a true chill out bar, NO TV's, NO LOUD MUSIC, NO ENTERTAINMENT, NO FOOD AND NO GIMMICKS. Since establishing the Oceanic in Oct 2006 it has gone from strength to strength with a good following of people from all nations and of all ages who are no longer customers but who i now class as friends. Just a simple bar with comfortable seating and sofa's, music from all eras 50's to present day with a collection you won't hear anywhere else, mood lighting and candles with a hint of rock music theme running through it. The Oceanic prides itself on only using original spirits in every drink served, original recipes for all its cocktails and also unique cocktails only found at Oceanic. Its not just about the drinks and relaxed atmosphere its about being able socialize with like minded people, enjoy conversation without having to shout and basically have a laugh and enjoy every night of your well deserved holiday without any worries. With 25 years experience in the leisure industry and the knowledge of 140 cocktails i'm sure we can find something for you or even make up a new drink on the spot to suit your taste buds. I have never made out that Oceanic is "The best bar" or "No.1 bar" or "Most popular" as thats not my style, i've always said its just a plain and simple bar, nothing more than that. Each bar is different and different people like different things, Oceanic is a good honest bar getting back to basics, a bar which people use as a meeting place, its like Marmite you'll either love it or hate it but i'm sure after your first cocktail or beer you'll be back again another night. So come along and pop in for a chat, everyone will be met with a warm welcome. Its like the TV bar "Cheers" as the song goes "you wanna go where everybody knows your name" and after a night in Oceanic you'll make plenty of friends . closed

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Winter Wipeout - Oceanic Chill Out Bars Cocktail Rev Kev

For those of you that missed it if you blinked haha or just like seeing me getting smacked about i've uploaded the video for you to watch. Ouch! Painful memories LOL

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Andrew Sykes - a man i'm proud to of called a friend

On Sunday i received a text telling me of the sad news that Andrew had passed away.

This came as a real shock to me as i had only seen him with Lesley a few weeks previous and had been in contact with him via e-mail 4 weeks ago.

If there were to be a picture for the definition of the word "Carefree" then a picture of Andrew could be next to it.

I've known Andrew and Lesley since 2004-05 from when they had come over to the Tropicana in Argassi from Kalamaki which used to be their holiday destination until they settled down to life on Kefalonia.

Never once in all the years i knew Andrew did i ever see him fed up, complain, moan or gossip. He always had a laugh and a joke which was very often followed by the words "Who Care's, Sod it" or words very similar to that, ha, but that was Andrew. Nothing seemed to faze him, didn't really care what other people thought and just enjoyed life. This is what i admired about Andrew and always took time out to talk to them both as they would always visit every night when they were holiday makers in Kalamaki and would also call in every night on their short visits from Kefalonia.

I also have a confession, i used to be Andrews dealer.................agggghhhhhh, no its not what your thinking, i used to get Andrew his stash of John Smiths, a few cases, to take back over to Kefalonia with him for their house. A man after my own heart.
In my 17 years on Zakynthos i can honestly say that I've not met to many people as good natured as Andrew with a wicked sense of humour.
Our last meeting and contact showed Andrews wicked sense of humour, this is part of the last email i had from him:-

"Hi Kev,

Hope everything OK. On the rock legend T-shirt I ordered, can you put on lyrics from Black Dog by Led Zeppelin.

Hey hey mama, said the way you move, gonna make you sweat, gonna make you groove.

Cheers and enjoy the rest of the season

P.S. The Lemon Song was too risque haha"

Andrew initially wanted to have the lyrics from the lemon song which were:-

"Squeeze me baby, 'till the juice runs down my leg
The way you squeeze my lemon
I'm gonna fall right out of bed"

As you can see from the e-mail Andrew was very considerate and conscious of others around him

Andrew and Lesley went from customers, to regulars, to friends and Andrew shall be missed very much by all who had met him and will never be forgotten.

My thoughts and prayers go out to Lesley and their Son.

I shall raise a pint of John Smiths in your honour sir and enjoy it while listening to "The Lemon Song".

Our loss is John Bonham's gain, he's a lucky guy.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Isn't it October yet! I need a body transplant.

Hello, hello and hello. So i thought i would fill you in on the why i haven't updated for so long.

Well firstly I've just been manic busy all season long so 4 to 5 hours of the morning is taken up running around getting stuff for the bar. Secondly due to stupid security with this blog it was saying that the device i was trying to connect from was not known even though I've used it all season to update so i couldn't log in to my blog account although today it has allowed me, good grief. Thirdly i think the updates would have been boring and same old same old as all i've done is work, work, work and no adventures. So this update was my duty to let you know what was going on.

Everybody sing along "It's rant time, everybody loves a rant time, everybody needs a rant tiiiiiime, it's RANT TIME!"
Well again i don't really have anything major to rant about but a few things have made me think "IDIOTS!".
For instance, in the UK if some random guy you never knew came up to you and said "Sir here is a vehicle that is meant for off road use mainly for farming for you to use with the added bonus of letting your 2 year old child cling for dear life to the petrol tank as you take off at high speed" would you accept it? NO. Cause in the UK you know its wrong. Here on Zakynthos it seems to be fine to put your youngest born in danger without any thought at all, Marvelous.

I think that's it, see told you not much to rant about these days.

Many customers are asking me about the All Inclusive killing the resort, i have to say i disagree.
Lets look at this logically. 
If you own a hotel that's AI your best interest is to get your customers out of your hotel in to the resort to eat and drink and this is why. If your hotel holds say 60 people and all of them stayed in all day and night eating and drinking for the full serving duration of the day your profit margins get less and less but if you can get them out of the hotel and you halve the consumption of the customers then your profit margins are higher. 
I can honestly say that this season about a third of my customer base has been from AI hotels, that's more than ever before and why.........because the drinks in the AI hotel are cheap local brands. I've had more customers from Cavo Doro and Kelelia Hotels since they went AI than when they were self catering and half board. 

Well the season is almost coming to an end but don't worry i'm already booked my flight to come back for 2018 and season number 12. Still even now people think someone else is having the bar. This is false. I have been here all season this year even though customers had told me this person and that person were having the bar for 2017, HELLO! Its still me serving drinks and name on the licence. Told you many times before never listen to rumours, always go to the source if you want the facts.
Talking of rumours, last season (2016) there was a rumour being spread that Veronica from The Lighthouse Restaurant had died. When i was told this i instantly said unless its come direct from a family member then i wouldn't take much notice of it and guess what............i was right. She was alive and well in December 2016 as one of my customers who came in this season had spoken to her on the phone. She told Veronica that she was dead and in her typical dry wit Veronica way she said "That's nice to know i'm dead thank you for telling me". And the moral of this tale is "Never tell anyone something unless you have proof or the full facts".

My eldest sister Fran and brother in-law Colin came for a surprise visit and what a surprise it was. I was talking to customers early evening and looked across the road and thought "I know that couple" so i waved and shouted "Hi" then realized it was them and said "Oh shit it's my family". Great to see them both on the island, only taken them 17 years but they made it and loved it and think we may have 2 new converts to Kalamaki.

So the bar is still very very busy so late on in season which is amazing and now i have to leave you to do my bar chores for the day.

I will sign off with a few pictures for those of you who don't like reading.

This sign was in Argassi, brilliant!

The sunrise as i leave my house for my morning coffee.

Bollards, do not park here.

Banoffee Biscuits, mmmmmmmmmmm

A great stocking filler for Christmas, the Oceanic 2018 calendar, sorry, SOLD OUT!

And for next years beer lovers i have spoken with the Levante Beer company rep Niko this week and will be stocking four of their micro brewery beers next season, they are so so good. I drink them when i have my early finish Saturdays and go in to Zakynthos town. You are in for a real treat. I will be stocking a Unfiltered Pale Lager, .Unfiltered Dark Lager, Bavarian Wheat Beer (My fav) and a Strong Bok Beer.
Here is their website

So time to head off now, not long left, the finish post is in sight, until the next update.......

Serve All, Love All, Peace All, Kevlar Out!

Monday, 18 September 2017

I am alive, just manic busy, HELLLLOOOOOOOOOOO!

Proper update coming very very soon i promise. Been locked out of account for nearly a month due to e-mail address i used to open this blog 11 years ago doesn't exist anymore. 11 years of drivvle and waffling ramblings, my my, how time flies.

Anywhooooo here is me diving in to a pool on one of my 7 days i've attended a pool since arriving on the island.

Still crazy manic here and a big big sorry for anyone who hasn't been able to get in to the bar over the season, only had 12 nights since i opened that bar hasn't been full at some point during the night, i can only apologies but i am looking forward to the end now, my poor stumpy legs are ready to fail me. "Keep goin' Kev your on the home stretch".

So its ta ta for now.

Serve All, Love All, Peace All, Kevlar Out!

Friday, 21 July 2017

EUREKA! Its ultimate food heaven I've created.

We shall start with my thought of the day as i am now a philosopher as you all know by now:-

"You can lead a horse to water but it will never be a fish"

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls I am that excited about my new food creation that i had to come in to town at 8 am to my secret coffee shop and write an update.

Don't know what to eat? Fancy a pizza but also wanting a Pot Noodle.
WHY NOT HAVE BOTH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

From Kevlars Kitchen Creations that brought you Crumpet Creations i give you..........

The Pozzle.

 Get yourself a fresh pizza base or Pita bread.

Select your pot noodle, for today's creation I've chosen chicken and mushroom and mix with hot water so its thick with no signs of a sauce.

Make a fresh pizza sauce from fresh tomatoes and onion with some BBQ seasoning

Add pot noodle to the top of pizza sauce.

Cover with a generous portion of grated mozzarella until completely covered.

Bake in oven for 15 Min's at 180 deg or gas mark 7 until cheese is just about browning.

Then throw straight down the toilet as that's where it will be an hour after eating it!

NAH! only joking. Oh my god, it tasted so good and the true sign of a good tasting pizza is when its cold the next day and i can honestly say it tasted even better this morning, best next day pizza, EVER!. Its a true master piece in the area of Leonardo Da Vinci's Mona Lisa, Shakespeare's Hamlet, Michelangelo's David and Alan Partridges Monkey Tennis.

Animals everywhere. My garden and courtyard are like the days before Noah set sail on his little jaunt. Not being funny but he took to his boat to save the good from the great flood and banish earth of evil. So in that thinking why take venomous snakes and spiders? Surely you'd take only animals that look cute, also man eating tigers and lions with man, cats with pigeons, silver back gorillas with chimps, do you see what I'm getting at. It would be a total blood bath on there.
Now you got me started, i think the novel called "The Bible" is flawed from the beginning. Adam and Eve had 3 sons, 3 SONS! Seth, Cain and Able. HELLO! Unless they could poop kids out how did the earth get populated? Although there is suggestions in a re-write (Directors Cut) Adam and Eve had 5 sons and 2 daughters. Still on dodgy ground really. Think we need a re-make like they do with the classic movies.
Anyway i got side tracked.

Here are the plethora (I like that word, i shall use it more often) animals at Kevlar Abbey.

Wilbur Hoppington

Gwendolin Hoppington

Carlucius Hoppington

And to the far right of picture its our new edition to the family baby Ticklemus Hoppington

Now then, on to the courtyard.

Kitten one and two

Kitten three.

No point in naming the kittens, they only cute for so long then turn in to cats and become arrogant.

Well what a great surprise. In Zakynthos town yesterday, the Greenpeace boat "Rainbow Warrior" was in port. You could go on and have a look around and give just a donation for the pleasure. Unfortunately i had very deep pockets yesterday and couldn't reach my money so just took a picture from port side but it is a impressive sight.

Its minion time, YAY! Look at this great t-shirt based on Iron Maiden's "The Trooper". See a minion can look cool no matter what situation you put them in.

And another minion moment, my non actor/teacher but Neurosurgeon nephew with a relative of Kevin the minions.

Here is Kyle again but this time in training for the S.W.A.T. team he has joined. No not Special Weapons Attack Team, Sheep With Attitude Taskforce. He is Welsh don't forget and have you seen how menacing some sheep look? They need taking down.
As I've said before "Don't mess with the Family, Capeesh?"

T-shirts are flying out all over the place and there are 2 new additions to the collection.
Firstly we have the killers who are touring this winter around the UK so this coincides with the tour.

But the next one is a very sad t-shirt to have had to make.
When their first single "One Step Closer" came out it was like a breath of fresh air and then a song of theirs that stuck with me was "In the End". I was managing Heath Sports & Social (happy days) at the time this came out and it was constantly being played on Kerrang TV, what a amazing voice Chester had. From gentle whispers to aggressive angst. Was really shocked when told of his death.
I chose "New Divide" and the lines I've chosen feel right to me.

R.I.P. Chester Bennington, a truly unique voice and performer.

So on that reflective note i shall leave this update there.

Until the next update........

Serve All, Love All, Peace All, Kevlar Out!

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

As Robbie would sing "I love my life!"

Socrates (Not the footballer), Pythagoras (Not the maths), Plato (Not what you eat off), Hippo (Not the animal), Evander (Not the boxer), Dio (Not the band), Aristotle (Not the.........its not anything else).
What do these names all have in common? ........................................They are all Greek Philosophers.
Now why am i telling you this? Well, over the past two years I've had time to think, listen to peoples comments, listen to customers rumour and gossip and i have taken it all in with contemplation, to which i have become a Philosopher myself.
To prove this i will give you my first words of wisdom:-

"Man who hears only one voice becomes blind to the truth."

Well, what you think? Not bad for my first attempt. By man i don't mean a man as in a male, we philosophers mean man as in "Mankind" so everyone.

Hello to one and all, how you all doing? I do hope your all well and good wherever you are.

The bar is now 72 days open and only 6 nights it hasn't been full at some point.
Every single customer so far who has stepped in to Oceanic has come back for a second visit which is great and not only that I'd say about 80% are all new to Oceanic with most coming in through word of mouth around pool or at hotel bar.
I am totally realistic and know this will not continue, last season i had a night at the end of July that i only took 50€. This is the reality of business, the ups and downs, can't always be ups.
I feel physically great all be it slightly tired due to being so busy but not complaining and all is good in the life of Kev publicly and privately.
May and June done and dusted but now comes the months i always dread, July and August which are usually quieter for me so its allot of book reading and waiting around till someone comes in, more often than not my first customer is about 10pm due to it being so hot up until that time but lets wait and see what happens.
Been to see my accountant this morning, all good there and first quarters V.A.T. cleared, and relax.

Now I'm not a modern day fan, i think i was born in the wrong era. I like a very simple life, I'm not in to techy stuff, I'm not money orientated, I'm not materialistic and i don't need Facebook, instagram or snapchat to make my life better. As long as your happy with your life all the other stuff doesn't really matter.  Just to prove sometimes the old ways are better for you i had a very old thing land on my doorstep of the bar two weeks ago that many of you younger readers won't remember, its called a letter.
Many people say modern technology is a good thing. Well this very old way of communicating, a letter, brought me the best news from the UK, so much so i went out to celebrate in Zakynthos town that night and had a couple of Zakynthos craft brewed beers, Yammas!.
Thank you J. Sharpe for saving me money, time, hassle with red tape paperwork and for making a great season even greater with your letter, i have sent you a letter of thanks in reply.
Kids, don't just depend on e-mails, letters can be a wonderful thing.

This season i have been asked many new questions but have been asked them quite a few times so just in case your coming out and thinking of asking me the same questions i will give you the answers now.

Q:- Oh, your still here then? (with amazement)
A:- Why where should i be? I've never said i was going anywhere.

Q:- Do you have more hair?
A:- (with huge laughter and choking) Definitely not, more grey and more of a wasteland now than a bald patch but the hair i have is longer not cut so short

Q:- How was Depeche Mode in Athens?

Q:- Have you lost weight?
A:- A little but black is slimming. Look at Pavarotti, he always wore black and you would have never have guessed he was 32 stone cause he looked so slim in black.

Q:- For how much longer do you think your going to do this?
A:- Until i decide I've had enough or my body tells me its time to quit, don't think i need to put a time limit on it.

Q:- Is your bike a Harley? (pointing to my bike parked outside the bar)
A:- No its a Yamaha, that's why its got Yamaha written on it.

That's just a few of the frequent new questions I'm asked but there are many more.

So its the 13th July and I've only been to the pool 5 times since April but i did get to my quiet pool at a certain hotel i use. As you can see from this years pic its still empty and that was taken only 2 weeks ago. How can this hotel still survive with hardly anyone there? Don't get me wrong I'm glad its this quiet as its such a lovely pool, would it to get over crowded and lots of noise.

I may have told you that this year there are no ducks but i do have 2 rabbits, well now i have 3 rabbits. While i was sat on my balcony watching the sunrise over my garden sipping a cup of tea this morning i spotted that i have a new baby rabbit has joined the family, awwwwwww, its tiny but was hopping all over the place. One afternoon the largest rabbit was having a chill out in the shade of the wall at my balcony. The pic looks like road kill but it is in fact just resting. I have called it Wilbur Hoppington. Sadly for him he on has one good back leg but boy he can shift.

SSSShhhhhhhhh, he resting.

In my last update i mentioned Kylo Bear. Many have asked who's Kylo Bear? Well Kylo Bear is a build a bear that was given to me for company in my home. There is something a bit disturbing about this though. Build-a-bear are selling bears of a character that killed his own father with a lightsaber through the heart. Slightly dark? I think so. Kylo Bears lightsaber actually lights up with real saber noise and if you push Kylo's chest it plays "The emperors theme". This is great but not when you sound asleep.
Kylo lays on the bed next to me every night and the first night he was there i must have rolled over and pushed his chest with my elbow only to set off "The Emperors theme". I will say now, i was more than a little startled and terribly confused as it was still dark. I didn't have a clue what the hell was going on and only remembered about a minute later in my bleary eyed state.

I present to you Kylo Bear.

The Oceanic Rock Legend T-shirts are again selling really well and people are buying them ready for concerts. On buying them my customers have said they will send pics of them wearing the t-shirt at the concerts they bought them for, so here is the first.

Thank you to Sean & Jane for wearing them to the Green Day concert at Hyde Park.

And finally, a few people have asked did i really go to Switzerland as the pics i put on my blog about it looked to good to be taken by me.
HOW DARE! I know I'm not technically minded but i do know how to use a pin hole camera, GOOD DAY TO YOU SIR, HMMMPH!.
So to prove i was actually there here is me alongside Freddie.

I don't look so short in this pic. Note to self, always have pictures taken next to statues.

Well that's it for this short update. Again not been out and about much as between 4-5 hours of the day is taken up by doing things for bar as its so busy at night and its just way to hot for long rides out on the bike, also all the Italians and Greeks are arriving off the ferries so the roads are a nightmare.
No rants either, as i said at the beginning, life is sweet and no need to rant, well not in this update anyway.

So until the next one........

Serve All, Love All, Peace All, Kevlar Out!