A Micro Spirits Odyssey presented by Hush Cocktails

Manhattan is about to be awash in an unprecedented celebration of small batch spirits.

The Micro Spirits Odyssey, created by Hush Cocktails (www.hushcocktails.com) expressly for the Manhattan Cocktail Classic (www.manhattancocktailclassic.com), is a daylong event co-hosted by Chef Alexandra Guarnaschelli of Butter (www.butterrestaurant.com) comprised of a series of seminars and spirits tastings paired with the perfect small bites to honor the small artisan producers and welcomes the imbibers who love them.

Erin Williams of Hush explains why it came together, “What we at Hush Cocktails love about this event is that it is aimed at promoting the ‘underdog’ – that small producer who gets shut out of other events because they may not have the marketing budget that allows them to participate and get the exposure they deserve. The Micro Spirits Odyssey is being hosted in an elegant space, with exquisite cocktails and culinary pairings which is a luxury many of these small batch micro distilleries could not afford to produce on their budgets like many of the more prominent and established brands are able to do. As a small business ourselves, we understand the importance of support from our peers, and we wanted to extend that support to the folks who make our job possible- the creators and producers of spirits. Every big brand and company that exists today started out small, and with the support of our fellow boozehounds and connoisseurs alike making this event a success, we hope to create a community that can help build and shape our passions to evolve with success, and of course, a simply marvelous time!”

You can’t help but marvel at the lineup of seminars which will enable you to explore various aspects of the growing artisan distillery movement (see schedule below) and you’ll be wowed by the offerings of participating spirits producers (see list below) who will be pouring tastes in “Ground Control” as customized cocktails are offered by Hush Cocktails and guest bartenders: Eryn Reece of Mayahuel, Yael Vengroff of Pegu Club, Frankie Marshall of Clover Club, Charles Hardwick of Pranna, and Abigail Gullo of Fort Defiance.

All of these notable bartenders and exquisite spirits in one place is an exciting proposition for attendees and event hosts alike. Guarnaschelli comments, “I am really excited to have this event at Butter because it showcases local, smaller businesses in our area. It builds a sense of community and the need for us to support and celebrate each other. Besides, what can be bad about a few delicious cocktails on a Sunday!”

Craft spirits and distilleries include: Bootlegger 21 Vodka, Blue Coat Gin (www.bluecoatgin.com), Catdaddy Moonshine (www.piedmontdistillers.com), Chairman’s Reserve Rum (www.saintluciarums.com), Finger Lakes Distillery (www.fingerlakesdistilling.com), Harvest Spirits Distillery (www.harvestspirits.com), Highland Park Scotch (www.highlandpark.co.UK), Macchu Pisco (www.macchupisco.com), Prohibition Distillery (www.prohibitiondistillery.com), Redemption Rye (www.redemptionrye.com), Tuthilltown Distillery (www.tuthilltown.com), Vieux Carre Absinthe (www.vieuxcarreabsinthe.com), Whistle Pig Rye (www.whistlepigwhiskey.com), Zubrowka Bison Grass Vodka (www.bisonbrandvodka.net), and more!


From Moonshine to Mastery – Stories From Behind the Stills
Event Date: 5/16/2010, 1:00 pm

With Erin Williams, Brian Van Flandern, Junior Johnson and Allen Katz Not only are entrepreneurs building viable, sustainable businesses using traditional, hands-on distilling techniques, they are enthusiastically embracing the distinctly American “moonshine culture.” Take a journey through the history of distillation, from the early years of bootleg stills to the modern day of copper pots and learn about the different techniques that have evolved throughout the years and the refined art distillation has become.

Our “ForeBroads”
Event Date: 5/16/2010, 3:00 pm

With Melanie Asher – CEO Macchu Pisco; Alexandra Guarnaschelli – Executive Chef, Butter Restaurant; Lynette Marrero – LUPEC NYC chapter President; Jennifer Simonetti-Bryan – Master of Wine; Erin Williams – Founder, Hush Cocktails; and Tony Abou-Ganim (aka Aunt Helen) – The Modern Mixologist. Hear the stories of the woman’s role in culinary and cocktail culture – along with distillation past, present, and future. Discover how females formed their roles working in distilleries during prohibition by running saloons and speakeasies, to the new trend of extremely successful women running their own restaurants, bars, distilleries and business related to. Women are claiming the roles of Chefs, Bartenders, Master Distillers and Sommeliers with passion and talent that rivals the men who also hold these illustrious positions.

NYCDG – Spirits are the Next Big Artisanal Farm Product
Event Date: 5/16/2010, 5:00 pm

With The NY Craft Distillers Guild: Gable Erenzo – Tuthilltown Spirits, Jeremy Kidd – American Fruits Distillery/Warwick Valley Winery, Brian McKenzie – Finger Lakes Distillery, and Richard Stabile – LiV Vodka/Long Island Distillery The Micro Spirits Odyssey is proud to feature the newly formed NY Craft Distillers Guild (NYCDG) in this seminar focusing on the growing New York distilling industry and its value to local agriculture and farmers. In New York, a state known for its wineries, many have begun to use their product to also produce distilled spirits and/or hard liquor. Spirits have now become a small niche for these boutique farm wineries, and recently artisanal distillers have begun to stand on their own. With its abundance of grain and fruit, New York now has the highest concentration of distilleries of any state east of the Mississippi. New York also has a long tradition of spirits production, dating back to colonial times. Although Prohibition killed off the distilled spirits industry in New York, it is now slowly returning, while changes in the state’s Alcohol Beverage Control Law have made it possible for small distillers to develop and flourish. During the seminar, guests will enjoy a sample of two delicious libations created by Hush Cocktails, using the craft products featured at the Micro Spirits Odyssey, as well as a delectable culinary pairing fashioned by iconic Executive Chef Alexandra Guarnaschelli.

Develop and Market Your Own Spirits Brand – Industry Primer
Event Date: 5/16/2010, 7:00 pm

With Dave Schmier, Dave Pickerel, Melkon Khosrovian, and Courtney Reum Ever think about creating your own spirits brand? Maybe you’ve tasted great exotic spirits while travelling and thought you could import it? Come up with a great idea for a new spirits brand? Or is your deep love for spirits driving you to become more involved in the burgeoning micro-distillery movement? Of course, there are legal and financial hurdles to overcome… This seminar will give you an overview of what you will need to get started, and help you navigate the legal, logistical and financial challenges of this exciting business. Moderated by Dave Schmier, developer and consultant for several small brands and director of the Indy Spirits Expo, the seminar contains a panel of entrepreneurs, including distillers, importers, and brand owners.

Butter Restaurant is located at 415 Lafayette St.- just a few doors down from the Astor Center.

****Bonus – admission to the Ground Control room is included with the purchase of tickets to any MSO seminar.

http://www.2010tickets.manhattancocktailclassic.com/default.asp?SearchText=odyssey&Go=Go  or get tickets at www.manhattancocktailclassic.com