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Podcast

Experiencing Bottled Cocktails With Crafthouse

As bottled cocktails take centre stage, we talk to the pioneers of the craft, Charles Joly & Matt Lindner from Crafthouse Cocktails

By: Tiff Christie|February 22,2021

Aside from the world’s obsession with sourdough starters, one of the biggest trends to have emerged from last year was bottled cocktails.

As an easy way for people to drink well at home, bottled cocktails were able to bring a little of the craft of cocktails from bars, into the homes of everyday people. But the bars and bartenders who are now starting to create bottled cocktails are by no means the first to think of the idea.

Back in 2013, world-renowned bartender, Charles Joly, and Chicago bar owner and restaurateur, Matt Lindner, pioneered the practice with Crafthouse Cocktails.

We speak to Charles and Matt about flavour, batching, and the future.

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For more information on Crafthouse Cocktails, go to crafthousecocktails.com, or connect with the brand on Facebook or Instagram

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Host
Aside from the world's obsession with sourdough starters, one of the biggest trends to have emerged from last year was bottled cocktails. As an easy way for people to drink well at home, bottled cocktails were able to bring a little of the craft of cocktails from bars, into the homes of everyday people. But the bars and bartenders who are now starting to create bottled cocktails are by no means the first to think of the idea. Back in 2013, world-renowned bartender, Charles Joly, and Chicago bar owner and restaurateur, Matt Lindner, pioneered the practice with Crafthouse Cocktails. We speak to Charles and Matt about flavour, batching and the future.
Thank you both for joining us.

Charles
Yeah. Thanks so much for having us. We're happy to talk cocktails anytime we get a chance to.

Host
Now, take us back to when you started Crafthouse. What made you think that bottled cocktails were a good idea at that time?

Charles
I think every time is a good time for a bottled cocktail. This is Charles speaking with you now from Chicago. And Matt, my partner is joining us from Denver, Colorado. But at that time when, when Crafthouse had launched, Matt and I had been working together in the bar industry for many years together. I'm now in my 23rd or 24th year in hospitality, my entire adult life. Matt has a couple of years on me, and he's owned bars and restaurants. I mean, truly. I mean, when did you start the Bird's Nest, Matt?

Matt
1995.

Charles
Yeah. So, I mean, to the extent where he was a young buck with his first bar and sleeping in the back room after having mopped the floors and whatnot. So this is what you do in this business. But with the cocktails in particular though, Matt and I accidentally opened one of the first craft cocktail bars in the city of Chicago. No one was-

Host
Accidentally.

Charles
It was a complete accident. No one was talking about craft cocktails and classic cocktails at that time very much. The Drawing Room was the name of this bar, and that was 2007, 2008. And really, there were just glimmers of this cocktail movement. Maybe in London a bit, maybe a little bit in New York a bit, these kinds of first sparks happening. And we had this idea to open this concept and do craft cocktails.
I happened to fall in love with that idea that combined both hospitality and the creativity that came along with being able to treat drinks the way chefs do food. And so I think that's where we really first got our first taste of the fact that people did want something better, that they expected something better. Because up to that point, cocktails were really pretty run of the mill, pretty sweet, not really much attention given to them. There wasn't a whole lot of love in cocktails. The '90s and the martini craze, and I'm not talking about a classic martini, but the tini phase that happened in the '90s did cocktails no favours for the generations to come.

Matt
Just to kind of add to that, a lot of people would come into The Drawing Room and ask Charles how to make these cocktails. And we appreciate that people like to bartend at home, but we also recognise the fact that people had to come into the cocktail bars around wherever they live to have a well-crafted cocktail. And it was difficult for them to have it at home, although they wanted it. They were looking for an alternative to beer and wine, they just weren't comfortable trying to create it themselves. Or if they did try to create it themselves, they weren't getting that balance right, and the cocktail just didn't taste as good as it would if they had it in a bar.
So we recognised the need and the desire for people to have it outside the bar. And then as we dove into the category, we recognised also that there's so many other applications where somebody can't get a well-constructed cocktail just because they wouldn't have the ingredients or the time to maybe prepare one, such as on an airplane or in a concert venue or those type of applications. So it got us excited about the idea. And then from there, we just had to figure out how the heck we were going to do it.

Host
Well, speaking about how you do it, I mean, you're talking about well-crafted cocktails with natural ingredients. In those days, how difficult did you find it to actually be able to produce them so that they were shelf stable?

Charles
Yeah, that's a great question, and I think it's a lot of where a lot of people fall short. And that is something that was one of our principles from the beginning. We did everything from scratch at The Drawing Room, even had these carts where we would roll up the cart table side and craft your entire cocktail right in front of the guests, because they were like, "Hey, we don't want people to miss out on this who can't have a seat at the bar."
So it was of the utmost importance to us. And it was something that Matt and I both agreed on, if we can't do this right we're not going to do it. I mean, we spent two years in R&D and finding the right partners to source ingredients from and to produce them. We went from bottling facility to bottling facility, and everyone had shortcuts they could offer us, and these shortcuts are exactly the reason why pre-packaged cocktails tastes like crap. It's all of the everything. Preservatives, artificial Flavours, corn syrups, all of this. And so we were like, "No, you're missing it. This is why you have neon yellow liquid that simulates cocktails that people are buying. We have no interest in that."
So we finally found a small co-packer outside of Montreal, Canada that was willing to be a little crazy and take some risks with us. And we learned the hard way, and we just, through trial and error, we were able to make it work. I mean, to the point of our Moscow mule, for example, I remember one distinct time when we were up there doing one of our early batches, and we make our ginger beer from scratch for that. People think, "Oh, Moscow mule, it's ginger beer and vodka." And it's like, well, yes, an average tasting one will be. But we made our own ginger beer at the bar ourselves from ginger, juice ginger and lime and sugar and a little carbonated water and spices. And we're like, "We're going to do that for these cocktails as well." It turns out that ginger juice clogs filters quite a bit along a bottling line.

Host
I imagine it would. Yeah.

Charles
And it's also slippery when it backs up and spills all over the floor. It's quite slick. And so, yeah, we had this entire facility's floor covered in ginger juice and cocktail, and we're slipping and sliding around in the wee hours of the morning after working all night on this thing. So things have gone quite a bit smoother since then.

Matt
Yeah. For us to do it right, I mean, Charles and I have always been on the same page about that, but Charles's name is... Both of our names are obviously are associated with the brand, but to not be able to talk sincerely about how we produce our cocktails and then not have total integrity behind them just wasn't an option. I mean, our reputations are quite important to us and we wanted to make sure that we can back them.
And so many people told us it just couldn't be done. If it could be done, other people would have done it. But the reality is that just obviously wasn't the case. It just hadn't been done because nobody had really put the thought and the time and the consideration. As well as the financial. It's not the cheapest way to produce a cocktail for sure, by doing it all step-by-step and the way we would do it behind the bar. So for better or for worse, we're adamant about doing it like that, even though it does end up costing us significantly more to produce.
And that facility that Charles is talking about up in Canada, they produced hard ciders. So they were really comfortable and familiar with the ability for preserving and working with real juice. And like Charles had mentioned, I mean, thankfully they were excited about the project and kind of worked through the process with us to get it to where it is right now. They were quite patient.

Host
Right. Talk us through the production of the drinks a little bit. I mean, do you still small batch?

Charles
Yeah. So from every step, this kind of dovetails into that idea. Yes, we do, I guess the short answer is we make runs as needed in the markets. So it's not like making vodka, for example, where you can make it and 20 years from now that vodka is going to be fine, so you can sit on it. You know? So we do make batches to order as we anticipate the different distributors and different stores needing them.
And when it comes to all of the ingredients and even the... Everything that goes into the cocktails, it was really easy for us in the beginning to kind of set up our mission statement, because like I said, we were either going to get it right and do it well or not do it. And even in the beginning there, none of this was born out of like chasing a trend. It wasn't born out of us being like, "Oh, we see other people being successful in this way, let's kind of follow that path." It was born of our being in the trenches and understanding, seeing a need from our guests every night at the bars and being like, "Hey, we have the skillset to make good cocktails. Can we scale these up and just make big batches of cocktails compared to what you would do in a bar?"
And we do events all the time. We'll batch cocktails up... Not this year, perhaps, but the Emmys and the Academy Awards and different big events shows where we'll make 15,000 cocktails. And a few of us will batch those up day of or the day prior for a big event like that. We take that same idea and just do it on a bit bigger of a scale with a bottling line so they can be pumped into the bottles. And I think that is where our cocktails stand out, head and shoulders, above so many others. Like these are just real cocktails with the same ingredients that we would use at the bar and done in a big batch, and in the exact same way if I were to do a big party, as opposed to liquid made to taste like a cocktail. It's a seemingly small thing, but it's a big difference. Something that simulates a cocktail is never going to quite taste like the right cocktail.
But we source the real spirits, like vodka you'd actually want to drink, gin you'd actually want to drink, tequila from producers that you'd actually want to drink. Not a bunch of flavourings, lime juice. We make our simple syrup. That was something that blew my mind early on when we would go to these bottling facilities, and we're like, "Yeah, we're going to bring sugar and we're going to make simple syrup." It's like equal parts sugar and water. It's the most basic bartending ingredient. And they were like, "Well, no, we'll just bring you in liquid corn syrup. Why would you want to do that?" And we're like, "All right, next."
Yeah. I mean, that's it. We don't use any artificial preservatives in any of our drinks. Our juice is pasteurised, and that's it. Our ABVs are real. If you look at every one of our cocktails, the ABV, the alcohol by volume, is unique to it. It just confuses me sometimes when I look at other ones and they're all 5% or all 6%. Ours are the ABVs they are because we made the cocktail and then that's what it came out to be. So we tested them and that's what we put on the label. So they ended up being two to three times stronger than a lot of cocktails you see that are pre-bottled, but the exact same strength as if you were to order one of those from a bartender at a bar.

Host
What sort of shelf life are you getting on average?

Matt
We test them. We test all our cocktails for a two-year shelf stability. So that's what we tell our partners. However, even after two years, they're not unhealthy or dangerous to drink. There's nothing growing in them. Just after time, the lime, it just won't taste quite as fresh. So again, to what Charles was saying, I mean, we produce as needed because the fresher the better. But if it's consumed within a year, it may taste slightly different if side-by-side after a year to one that was just produced, but it's certainly stable. Again, as Charles mentioned, the alcohol acts as a natural stabiliser, all of our cocktails being over 10% alcohol, the pH barging out as much oxygen as possible, limited light exposure. All those things kind of aid in keeping those cocktails fresh.

Host
Now, in the intro I mentioned that there are a huge number of people doing bottled cocktails right now. Do you think that chasing a trend is a problem with a lot of the new bottled cocktail businesses?

Matt
You know, certainly there's been a lot of recognition into the category. I think although a seltzer is technically in the same category, it's a different product, but that helped open the door to the acceptance of the category. And yeah, a lot of people have jumped in.
A lot of people are putting some pretty decent stuff out there as well. I mean, there's definitely some quality things being produced, but I do think that because of the hastiness, maybe, of jumping in that people aren't really still approaching it the way that we do over here at Crafthouse. And I would say one of the biggest differentiators is that ABV. I think a lot of them that are jumping into this space are trying to do it to be that, to get in this hot category, and are trying to do it as economically as possible, which tends to impact the quality.
So as excited as we are, because the category has been elevated in no small part to Crafthouse and some of the other brands that are out there, we do worry that it's going to get watered back down because of a lot of the people that are jumping in and trying to, like Charles had mentioned, make it taste like a cocktail, as opposed to really creating a quality cocktail option.

Charles
I think we do have a unique standpoint from the fact that I'm actually a career bartender and I actually make the recipes, where I'm going to our bottling facility next week to work on some things and work on some innovation. We're an independent company, so it's not some office full of people taking guesses at it, and then they hand it off to a scientist or something. It's me going to talk to one guy who then is going to combine all the ingredients together. So ours come from a place of real expertise. I think the cream will rise to the top. And I think anytime people see opportunity, naturally you're going to have lots of people jump into the field. But it's not easy to do right.
I guess I would just encourage the people that are on the tail end of it, the people who are our fans and the people who are hopefully our future imbibers to just do the tiniest bit of homework on it to see what you're actually drinking. Is it all actually made with spirits, spirits that you'd actually want to drink? Is it actually made with real juice? How is it preserved is a great question. As Matt said with the shelf life, like things don't go bad, but the lime, it loses some of its acidity. We add zero citric acid even to our cocktails. And something that is as acceptable as citric acid in terms of an ingredient that people add to... almost everything we drink has a touch of that, we don't put in our cocktail.
So I think we do live in a world of transparency and where you can find out information on brands by doing a little bit of homework, and people are a little more curious. So we invite people to peel back the layers of everything we do. And I would challenge them to also do that with some other brands and kind of do their own comparison as well.

Matt
I would also say a lot of the people that are getting into the category, and I think one thing we've learned over the course of our existence is understanding what people want. And again, Charles and I both being lifers in the industry, but Charles really dedicating his life to understand cocktails and people's preference. We were the very first people to ever bottle a Moscow mule or paloma. And again, this was 10 plus years ago where we came up with the idea of Crafthouse and beginning research. And this was before anybody really even understood or even knew what a Moscow mule was. And now you can't walk into a store without tripping over a Moscow mule mug.
I think some of the mistakes too that people are making potentially is we're really trying to make our cocktails accessible and straightforward and simple in ingredients. All our cocktails are basically four plus or minus ingredients. We're not trying to put some extra secret spin on it that's going to confuse the purchaser. And this is something that was hard for us to achieve as well. I mean, when somebody is walking down the shelf, especially when we first launched and nobody else was doing it, they had all kinds of questions. Like is the liquor really in there? Is this a real spirit and not malt? We want to make sure that people really understand what they're going to get.

Host
You've got seven cocktails that you've put into bottled form. What is it about those drinks, what made you decide on the particular drinks that you've brought forward?

Charles
Yeah, I think that's the benefit of being in the business. Behind the bar every night, when liquor companies want to know what the trends are, they ask the bartenders because we're in the trenches seeing it a la minute. So we were able to be ahead of the curve on that. And that takes some speculation as well, because you can miss when you decide on what cocktail you want to do.
So our original, as much as our stuff is very accessible and relatively recognisable, it didn't throw it right down the middle. As Matt said, now a Moscow mule may seem passe, but 10 years ago, it was the cocktail of the moment, or it became the cocktail of the moment. So our original lineup was the Moscow mule, paloma and the Southside. We knew we wanted to do a tequila cocktail, but again, with everything being on the market at that time was really artificial. So we didn't want to do a margarita because the margarita in a can at that point or in a bottle at that point had been... just the quality was so low. And so it would have been really confusing to people. How would they know the difference between ours and that?
In my experience, Mexico, from Chicago, door to door, I can be in Mexico City in four hours. So it's actually quite a short flight from Chicago to Mexico. And then another hour and a half of travel, and I could be in Jalisco, which is the main tequila producing region. So I've been down to Mexico as has Matt many, many times. We love tequila. So we knew we were going to do a tequila cocktail. And when you're in real Mexico, not in tourist areas on the coast or whatever or some all-inclusive, you will get a bottle of tequila on your table and a bowl of limes, and there will be some salt around and a bottle of Coke and a bottle of Squirt.
And so you're making yourself palomas at the table. You're making your tequila and Coke. It sounds disgusting but it's actually quite a good cocktail with a little salt and a squeeze of lime in it. It's called a Batanga. It's quite a good drink, as off as it sounds. But palomas are something that people actually drink. And you do see margaritas, but not in the way that we do here. So I was like, "Let's do a paloma." And that cocktail has caught fire as well.
The Southside, it was definitely an abstract cocktail in terms of it's a classic, going back to American prohibition era, but the profile of it's understandable. It's basically a gin gimlet with mint or a gin Mojito. You can describe it to people, but they would not know what, even now, have no idea what the name Southside is. Although, that cocktail has come along as well and seen some popularity. And same thing with our... The Gold Rush was the fourth and was our first aged spirit cocktail with bourbon in it. And instead of just doing a whiskey sour, the gold rush is a contemporary classic. That's a variation on a whiskey sour. So we can explain it along the ways.
So with each of the seven cocktails, we basically provided a turnkey cocktail menu as well. You've got all the major spirit categories represented, which we really rounded out with our newest releases about a year ago with our rum cocktails, and also our first all-spirit cocktail with our rum old fashioned. We source our rums from Plantation Rums, which have some just gorgeous expressions, and that allowed us... Anyway, we had our gin, our vodka, our tequila, our bourbon, and our rum all covered, and our spirit-forward for that old fashioned or Manhattan type drinker. So we had a little bit of something for everyone. We don't expect everybody to like every cocktail. That's why we have so many options. In our latest release, even moving into mezcal with our Mezcal Margarita, and then our newest, newest, which is a Jalapeno Margarita that's got some jalapeno and a little kiss of Chipotle in it.

Matt
And one of the things that we work towards when deciding these cocktails, again, just understanding people's trends and profiles is to make that lead spirit, obviously it comes through in a very balanced way. So for instance, the Southside, which is a Gin cocktail, Gin drinkers will really appreciate that cocktail, but we also wanted to focus on bridging others into the category of gin, or non-gin drinkers being able to now appreciate what a good gin cocktail could really be. And you can really go down the line for all of our cocktails. The Mezcal, the smoky margarita, it's a 60/40 tequila to mezcal blend. So you get really nice smoke. However, it doesn't knock you over the head smoke where you have to be an exclusive kind of Mezcal fan to appreciate it, you're going to really hit on both sides.
So that was always top of mind for us to make sure, again, bridging people into different spirit categories that they might not be familiar or comfortable with, but also making sure that those who are can really appreciate the efforts put into those cocktails.

Charles
And that comes from experience behind the bar though, like the Southside, as Matt said, making it an approachable gin cocktail, like I called the Southside my gateway gin cocktail. It was winning our vodka drinkers back over in 2007, and reintroducing them to gin. Because they maybe only had Gin and a Gin Martini perhaps where you had two ounces or 60 mils of gin in it, and it was a big London dry style gin. Or they had a Gin and Tonic and they really didn't like Tonic, so they had a bad experience and got turned off to it. Where no, actually, if we grab onto the lime characteristic and the bright citrus and this wonderful mint herbal that really is a friendly flavour bridge to the Gin, it turns into this refreshing whole new experience. And so I think that comes with our personal experience behind the bar and finding the right cocktail for our guests.

Host
Now, I find it interesting when you look at the cocktails you've chosen, you've haven't gone down that sort of bitter road. Why is that?

Charles
I love a Negroni as much as the next person, but I would say that's quite a polarising cocktail, for one. Not everyone is ready for that bold, bitter flavour. So I think you're going to appeal to a much smaller set. You know, I think our rum old fashioned got us into that all spirit-forward. And with that one, we combined some bitters from Bittered Sling, which is a fantastic artisanal bitters company that started up in Vancouver, Canada. A husband and wife team. They make absolutely gorgeous products. And so we sourced the bitters from them for our rum old fashioned to get the perfect profile.
So I think the future may certainly see more spirit-forward cocktails for us, but for me, how many rum old fashions can you have in a night before your night comes to an early close? The nice thing, if you sit down with a 750 or a wine sized bottle of one of our sour cocktails, any of those other more refreshing cocktails, you can have three or four of them and you're going to feel really cheery, but you're also going to be able to finish dinner and not end up on social media for the next day for any of your actions.

Host
Are there are ways that people can put their own spin on these drinks, whether they're having them at home or out at an event?

Charles
Yeah, countless. Because they are kind of in their raw form, you can customise them with countless ways with liquors or fruit addition to it or whatnot. I mean, a Moscow mule is such an easy flavour pairing opportunity. You've got vodka, lime, and ginger, and a little bit of spice. Ginger goes with just about any fruit. Lime goes with any fruit. So you could add a liqueur cordial, a quarter ounce to kind of bring that flavour in. You can certainly muddle in some fresh fruit into so many of the cocktails, or herbs, and it would be delicious to make your own.

Matt
Keeping the ingredients simple and clean, it really allows for that customisable drink option, because now you can add your own little twist in it and make it your own signature cocktail, whether it is at home or as a bar, using it as at the base.

Now, you've brought the Moscow Mule and the Margarita into a larger format. What has the reaction been to that?

Matt
Pretty much this week, we added to that, the pineapple daiquiri and the smoky margarita to the list. So we now have four different 1.75 litre bottled, or I guess, boxed cocktails. And the response has been awesome. Wegmans, which is a huge retailer out in the East has taken on all four. They think that the idea and the packaging alone, they've always loved the juice on the inside, is a home-run. And we've definitely seen some other retailers jump on as well. We also think that there's going to be nice applications for on-prem too, because again, it helps drive the pour costs down even lower than they could probably construct a cocktail themselves. So overall, the response has been great.
The box is something that Charles and I have talked about for years and trying to figure out exactly how we can achieve that in a box has taken us till this point to be really happy with. It's also great from a preservative standpoint as well; no air, no light. And for during these times when people just stick it in their fridge and just like a glass of wine with dinner, they could certainly enjoy one of those four cocktails with dinner, and it's going to stay good for as long as needed to get through that box. But yeah, the response overall has been great. I wouldn't be surprised again, just like the trend in the individual served cocktails, that you're going to start seeing some more boxed cocktails probably hit the markets. It's also more environmentally friendly as a lot of the other formats of larger formats that are out there. So we think it really represents the brand. We love the packaging, the way it came out. It's a nice, classy way to enjoy a larger format cocktail.

Charles
Yeah. And I think that quite early on in the next year or two, you're going to see a lot more of that format. It's not quite accepted as much yet, but again, neither was beer in aluminium cans, like high quality beer in aluminium cans. I mean, screw craps on wine at one point... There's a huge fallout in the wine world. Are people going to drink a $100 bottle of wine that has a screw cap on it? And like, yeah, it's fine.
It costs less to produce, so we can charge less for it, and so we pass that savings on to the people enjoying us, and it recycles so easily as well and it breaks down to a really small format. So there's a lot of reasons to work with that. And I mean, we switched our small, our 200ml, which are like one and a half to two serving cocktails, those are in all aluminium packaging. We used to have glass bottles. So they trample really easily and recycle easily and all that. And you can have them on a beach or on a poolside or something like that, and you don't have to worry about breakage.
And they seal back up as well, which is nice. When you open a can the can's opened. It's kind of nice to have formats, and all three of our formats. Even and our 750 is a flip-top. It has kind of like that Grolsch beer snap top, quick closure, which those are great. And those are beautiful. We launched with those, and I like them still in that 750 format. People save them. I use them all the time for my different syrups and whatnot if I'm batching up cocktails for an event. So they're not only beautiful, but they're functional and people end up holding onto them.

Host
Now, what are the plans for Crafthouse moving forward?

Charles
Global cocktail domination, basically.

Host
Excellent.

Charles
No, we're not short of ideas, for sure. I think we have so many ideas. Matt, I don't know if you want to talk about... I mean, we're expanding throughout the U.S. and have our eyes set certainly internationally. We're in nearly 20 states and look to grow to something like 35 within the next few months. So I don't know if, Matt, if you want to pick up off that answer.

Matt
Yeah. I mean, we definitely are trying to create... Even though we've been around for since 2013, again, just because the category has grown so much over the course of the last year, we still consider ourselves a new brand, one that still needs to get recognised out there. And when we even talk about the Moscow Mule, the Moscow Mule for us is the best selling cocktail. It's also the most recognised of our cocktails. But what it's really doing is it's helping build trust in the brand. So people have our Moscow mule, they recognise the quality, and it allows for them to go back and experiment with some of the other cocktails that we offer.
So we want to continue to do that where people are really going to trust the brand. So at some point maybe we do some seasonal or some small batch, and maybe it's a less recognised cocktail, but now they're so comfortable with Crafthouse and who and what we are that they're going to go out and try that. And Charles is like, he mentioned, going out. We are working on some additional line extensions, some additional formats too. Because we definitely also want to be seen as the pioneers, the innovators, not just the first ones to do it, but always trying to stay ahead of the trends and creating something special before anybody else.

Host
I mean, I suppose the one bright thing about everything that's gone on in the last year is it has opened consumer's eyes very much to this category. Do you think it's a trend that will continue once everything goes back to normal?

Matt
I definitely think so. Again, from 2013 to seemingly yesterday, we're out there, really just trying to convince people that a ready-to-drink prepared cocktail, doesn't have to suck. It was a tough sell. We really thought we thought about everything going into our cocktails, but one thing we didn't necessarily recognise is that deep kind of preconceived notion on what it's going to taste like, that we really had to convince people otherwise. And again, thankfully a lot of our competitors and to ourselves that have exposed people now to what it really can be, there's a need for it. The people don't always want to drink beer. They don't always want to drink wine. A lot of people, and I think in a lot of facilities like sports and entertainment, they're seeing it, the demand for cocktails is there. People have never really been comfortable with the options that were out there or making it themselves at home. Obviously we encourage the home bartender, but some people just don't have the time or the desire to do it.
This is giving people a real option. So just like people enjoy beer at home, just like people enjoy wine at home, I think that this trend isn't going away anytime soon. I think it's just going to increase in popularity, and as more and more people become exposed to what a quality drinking experience with a cocktail can be outside of the bar restaurant.

Charles
Yeah. And hopefully we capture some of those people that like the convenience of the format as well and want something that is of actual quality and a little bit more adult than like the hard seltzers. That wave caught everybody a little bit off guard. Man, like that one is a real head scratcher for me. Believe me, I'm not a snooty drinker, a macro domestic beer and a shot of whiskey on the side is just fine with me at a bar. I don't need a 19-ingredient cocktail by any means, but just these malt mystery alcohols with flavourings into them and carbonated, I guess I wish I had the idea, but it's not necessarily... I like a little something better in my glass though. There's such a line between that, like real cocktails and for people not to confuse them with the hard seltzer category.

Matt
Yeah. But I do think that hard seltzer has really just widened the category, and people that are drinking the seltzers may want to see what else is out there that's a bit different.

Charles
For sure. Yeah, straight up.

Host
And that's a bit more sophisticated. Yeah.

Matt
Exactly.

Charles
And I'm fine with that. Yeah, the seltzers are a gateway to drinking something in a can or in a small bottle or in a box now. And that's fine. I thank them for the assist, and have a good day, and we'll move on from there.

Host
All right. Well, look, thank you guys for joining us today. If people want more information on Crafthouse, they can of course go to your website, which is CrafthouseCocktails.com, or connect to the brand via social.

Yep. They can find us @DrinkCrafthouse and all the social media platforms.

Cool. All right. Thank you so much then.

Thanks so much for your time. We really appreciate the chat.

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Experiencing Bottled Cocktails With Crafthouse

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