As an avid caffeine fiend I often find myself looking for my next coffee binge. And if there’s one thing Los Angeles is good for, it’s the coffee culture. In a city that never sleeps, fueled by entertainment, fashion and all things a little wacky, it’s no wonder why Angelenos can’t get enough of their daily drip. Unfortunately, with the daily hustle and bustle of never-ending traffic and busy schedules, it’s harder to get a good cup of joe than you might think. Because of this, most of us find ourselves stopping at the nearest Starbucks or Coffee Bean chain or average joe coffee joint to get our fix. If you’re as dependent on your daily dose as me, than you should agree – one size (or shot) does not fit all. May it be your favorite fall latte or a classic cappuccino, the fuel you put into your body matters. So, I’ve complied some of my favorite local off-the-beaten-path coffee shops that are sure to wake you up!
What happens when you ﬁll a train car with bartenders and representatives from four countries that produce whisk(e)y? The Great Whisk(e)y Debate….on a Train 2013! It started earlier this summer in various cities, culminating in July at Tales of the Cocktail when Fred Noe (Master Distiller, Beam Bourbons), Simon Brooking (Master Ambassador, Scotch Whisky), Kieran Folliard (Chief Irish Whiskey Ambassador, USA) and Dan Tullio (Master Ambassador, Canadian Whisky) hosted a Spirited Dinner to debate the merits of Knob Creek, Laphroaig, Kilbeggan and Canadian Club whisk(e)y. Insults were slung, in an entertaining and hilarious manner, as each representative laid claims as to why their whisk(e)y was the better one. By the end of the night, after all the whisk(e)y drinking, it is hard to say who the winner was as the room seemed to be equally divided.
Simon Brooking and Pedro Shanahan, education specialist at Seven Grand in
Los Angeles, decided to continue the debate…..but this time on a train! “It was
something that no one has done and it was a fun way to learn,” explained April
Gallegos, Distillery Specialist – Super Premium Brands, Beam Global. Simon
Brooking and Dan Tullio were joined by Irish Whiskey Ambassador Jennifer Graham and Bour-Bon Vivant and Bourbon Ambassador North America, Adam Harris. They boarded the Silver Splendor, a vintage restored train originally built in 1956, along with a handful of Los Angeles’ bartending community. Sitting in the Vista Dome Lounge-Dining Car with a glass-enclosed rooftop observation room, the train departed from Los Angeles to San Diego and the debate was underway.
One by one, they discussed the history, impact and uniqueness of their brand.
“It’s a great way to gain knowledge of the brands in a fun and engaging way,
showcasing each brand and what makes them so special,” Gallegos continued. Of course, their goal was to explain why their brand is the best but a few insults were thrown along the way as well, of course, all in good fun.
Read the full story from Beverage Industry News September 2013.
Meet Pep Katcher, one of the owners of Cruz Tequila. We sat down in New Orleans where Pep told me the story of Cruz Tequila as we tasted through the soft, elegant tequilas.
Cruz Tequila was created eight years ago when Pep, his brother Saulo, and friend Todd Nelson declared that they could make better tequila than the one they happened to be drinking. With no knowledge of the manufacturing aspects of tequila, they were determined to build a brand from scratch that would represent a flavor profile that was soft, smooth and approachable.