Inventory for May 20th,2017
We counted them bottles! In this week’s inventory Jim Meehan is set to open a new bar in Chicago, Aldi’s £13 whisky beats far pricier competitors to scoop award at international spirits event, scientists say that alcohol isn’t to blame for a change in your personality while drinking, and booze companies are opening their own hotels.
Cinco de Mayo might be over, but that does not mean we’ll stop drinking tequila. If you want to widen your horizon a little further and drink more than “just” the ol’ Margarita (though we’re certainly not knocking that), take a look at Liquor.com’s 15 great tequila cocktails. We’re personally fond of Pepita Cantina’s Low Rider, which is made with “a mist of peaty Laphroaig scotch, then builds with layers of reposado tequila, grapefruit cordial, maple and Peychaud’s bitter”. Deelish.
Jim Meehan to Open Bar in Chicago
Time to head to the windy city, eh? The Spirits Business reports that “Jim Meehan, the founder of acclaimed New York bar Please Don’t Tell, is to open a site in Chicago in late summer 2017”. The new bar is set to carry the name ‘Prairie School’ and is developed in partnership with Heisler Hospitality’s Matt Eisler and Kevin Heisner. The bar is said to be “uniquely American” but will also reflect a “global perspective”.
The space will be split into two concepts, what those will look like has yet to be revealed. Meehan said “I grew up in River Forest and Oak Park and moved to New York City in 2002 to build my career in hospitality. My admiration for Chicago has only grown since I left, as I’ve watched the city transform: growing its international stature as a hub for food, wine and culture. I’m eager to be part of it in this project, which affords me the opportunity to explore my roots as both an outsider and a native son”.
Aldi’s £13 Whisky Beats far Pricier Competitors at International Spirits Event
haha! (is pretty much all we have to say to that.) Aldi’s own brand whisky Highland Black 8-year won the Scotch whisky category at the 22nd International Spirits Challenge (ISC) last week. The Scotsman notes that the judges described the whisky as “a rich blend of the finest grain and malt from Scotland“.
Tony Baines, joint managing director of corporate buying at Aldi said “Being awarded these accolades proves that whisky lovers can enjoy great value drinks without compromising on quality.” Aldi also won awards for its Glen Marnoch Highland and Glen Marnoch Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whiskies and other events.
Alcohol Not to Blame for Change in Personality, so say Scientists
The Spirits Business reports “A team of US psychologists have debunked the theory of a ‘happy drunk’, suggesting that alcohol plays less of a role in altering a person’s personality than you might think”. The old stereotypes of “she’s a angry drunk, he’s a happy drunk, and they’re drunk criers” still hold strong, though scientists are beginning to debunk this theory.
A team of scientists from the University of Missouri “has argued that the only tangible effect of alcohol on personality is extraversion, with a person’s personality becoming louder, but not altered“. That seems to make a lot of sense. “The team’s findings suggest that while you might think you are acting outrageously and behaving like an entirely different person when consuming alcohol, those around you might not be as aware of it as you might think”. Well, that’s good to know for our next bar night out.
Beyond the Minibar: Why Booze Companies Are Opening Hotels
While a hotel usually comes attached to a bar, the same does not necessarily hold true the other way around. Things are a’changing though and craft companies like Sipsmith are opening lofts above their tasting rooms. Last week Eater wrote a whole article on this phenomenon, in which it mentioned 2016’s ‘gin hotel’. “The property features boutique guest rooms, open to the public, located three stories above a working distillery, with a gastropub and a Spanish-inspired tapas bar sandwiched in the floors between. There was good reason for all the fanfare: Although the concept might not seem revolutionary, it was actually first of its kind, not just in London, but across the entire U.K.” Another example is Patrón, which has taken this model to the highlands of tequila. Though invite only, the “premium brand unveiled La Casona, an addition to a Spanish Colonial-style hacienda which already houses its outsized distillery. It’s a five-star resort masquerading as a guesthouse: 20 suites, gourmet dining, a full-service bar, a fitness center, and even a karaoke DJ”.
This move makes sense, seeing as brands are usually eager to invite journalists, distributors, brand ambassadors, and bartenders to come see the production of their spirit. Once there, one usually tends to gain a better insight into the product and to develop a deeper relationship with the brand. All the better if those guests are able to sleep directly at the source, with a experience curated specifically to the spirit. More and more breweries and distilleries are following this business practice and it seems to be working.
Foto: Photo via Shutterstock.