Cheers-Nov-Dec 2016

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

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Page 8 of 63 9 November/December 2016 • DRINK CULTURE W HOTELS' PRESIDENTIAL COCKTAIL COLORING BOOK FOR ELECTION-SEASON GUESTS Sensing that guests would need a dis- traction—and perhaps a stiff drink—during the 2016 election season, W Hotels in late October launched "All The President's Cocktails." The spirited coloring book celebrates past presidential drinking habits with 12 pages of former presidents and their favorite cocktails. Each page includes an illustration by artist Lindsay Mound to color, and a cocktail recipe to mix. The drawings in "All The President's Cocktails" feature past leaders of the U.S. in unexpected settings, with corresponding tales of their drinking habits of yore. For instance, George Washington is drawn as a hipster in a modern-day, small-batch distillery, and enjoying a Whiskey Old Fashioned, while John Adams is socializing at a fancy bar with Madeira Port Sangria and Thomas Jefferson is depicted brunching on the Potomac with a Wine Spritzer. Andrew Jackson (looking bitter about being replaced on the $20 bill) has a Whiskey Sour; Abraham Lincoln (also known as "Sober Abe") opts for a Cucumber Stiletto Mocktail at the spa; Teddy Roosevelt sits with a teddy bear enjoying a horse race and a Mint Julep; Franklin D. Roosevelt shakes a Gin Martini behind a bar (with his sleeves rolled up, revealing tattoos); and John F. Kennedy lounges on a sailboat with a Daiquiri. "All The President's Cocktails" was available exclusively to guests who booked the EWOW Suite, the brand's take on the Presidential Suite. It was offered at all of the 24 W Hotels throughout the U.S. from Oct. 28th until Election Day Nov. 8. Entrepreneur Rolls Out Chocolate Sidecar Drink Garnish Out for dinner one evening, New Jersey chocolatier David Little was watching fellow guests receive their cocktails. He felt that "people were experiencing the same feelings one gets when they unwrap their favorite chocolate bar." Little was also impressed with the bartender's craftsmanship with garnishes, but wondered about the high level of labor involved. Composing all these thoughts onto a cocktail napkin, Little designed the Chocolate Sidecar: a 1/3-oz. chocolate disc with a notch so that it can sit on the rim of a glass. "Upscale beverages and choc- olates, both appeal to the same senses of touch, sight, smell and taste, and offer an added treat to any moment," Little explains. The prod- uct offi cially launched last July and sells for about $1 each. These Belgian-style gourmet chocolates, which measure 1-3/8" in diam- eter and are 3/8" thick, come in a variety of fl avors, from the standard milk or dark chocolate, to orange, strawberry, mint, lemon, lime and jalapeno. Designs on the candies depict the fl avor, so the orange-fl avored chocolate Sidecars are imprinted with an oranges motif (shown above), and so on. Holiday themes include mint chocolates with candy cane designs. Little's company,, will put logos and images across the candies. He's worked with Treasury Wine Estates to add their compa- ny logo into Chocolate Sidecars for New Jersey wine tastings. The different fl avors provide a number of pairing opportunities: Dark chocolate pieces are a natural garnish on a glass of red wine; milk choco- late goes well with Champagne or white wines. The lime fl avor works with tequila cocktails, while the orange candies complement bourbon drinks. GUESTS EATING THEM UP But customers are not too picky about fl avors when they get a chocolate Sidecar with their cocktail, says Melanie Minuth, general manager for Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza in Livingston, NJ. "Most of the time the garnish just goes right into the customer's mouth," she says. Minuth has tested dark and milk Chocolate Sidecars on a broad spec- trum of drinks, including her Pomegranate Martinis and all of Anthony's wines. The sidecars have proven so popular that she's also included them on Grey Goose vodka Martinis, and with pumpkin brews and pear cider. "We've found that you can really put either on whatever drink," Minuth says. "Either way, it's still special to the customer." As a beverage alcohol enthusiast, "I'm always looking for something new, that special little touch you want to see in cocktails these days," she adds. Anthony's customers seem to appreciate the chocolate bonus when it arrives on their beverages. "People are ripping them off their glasses and eating them before they even take a photo of their drink," Minuth says. "And that's quite uncommon these days." —KS

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