The Mixology Talk Podcast, Episode Eight

Somehow we (and our livers) survived Tales of the Cocktail! The last time we recorded we were just a couple of days in, but there was a lot more coming! Everything from bar contests to rare spirits tastings to lots and lots of New Orleans Beignets… let’s just say we’re had a blast but we’re glad to be home!

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Three Key Themes from Tales of the Cocktail:

Uncool Spirits are Making a Comeback

For the last several years, Rum and Vodka have been all but shunned from craft cocktail bars. At Tales this year we definitely saw a lot of spirits brands investing in new Rums and high end Vodkas. Not only that, but we had the chance to taste some and were really impressed!

A couple of our favorites were:

  • Lost Spirits Navy Rum
  • Absolut’s new “Elyx” Vodka

Respecting the Craft

I heard the term “Respecting the craft” more often than ever before.  The bartenders at Tales are really taking their career seriously and encouraging the rest of the industry to take note.  This will be great for consumers as we continue to see innovation in drink creation, but also because the industry is refocusing on hospitality.  No more snooty bartenders – it’s about the drink but it’s also about the experience

More Options for Bar Education

Perhaps most interesting to bartenders, I was excited to see that there are a lot of new education options out there for folks who want to learn about spirits & craft bartending.  Take note however – most of these programs are underwritten by spirits companies (and come out of their marketing budget!)  Some of the ones we’re familiar with are:

  • BarSmarts (One of the first and most established.  Focus is on spirits knowledge.)
  • Angostura’s Rum University (Just released – I’ll add a link when I can find it!)
  • Pisco Porton’s also just-released educational program about Pisco
  • Our very own Cocktail Design Masterclass (Warning: we’re totally biased).  This one’s very in-depth for folks who want to learn to design cocktails from scratch. (This one is NOT affiliated by any spirits producers.)

Tonight We’re Drinking… WATER!

Sorry folks, no cocktail recipe this time.  We’re still recovering!

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