Cocktail culture is in full bloom in Nashville — any day, in any Nashville neighborhood, you can find any number of talented mixologists slinging excellent craft cocktails around town, from Attaboy in East Nashville to Patterson House in Midtown.
Also worth noting: If you don’t feel like leaving your home, you’re doing OK in Nashville these days too.
In 2017, we have a healthy crop of locally made drink mixers spanning from spicy Bloody Marys to bright Old Fashioneds that require little more than adding spirits and stirring. If that strikes you, below, some of the local companies who can help make your Nashville home bar a quick and easy (and convenient) craft cocktail stop:
The newest of the mix: WithCo (or With Company) cocktail mixes just launched in August, and the founders also opened a storefront in East Nashville (1006 Fatherland Street #205, in the Shoppes on Fatherland), where you can grab their concoctions in person, as of September 1. Their first releases — based on fresh ingredients and mixed locally — are Bouquet (with lavender and rosewater), Jackass (ginger, lime and bitters) and the Ellis Old Fashioned (with cinnamon, vanilla and orange), available in 16-ounce bottles and mini 6-ouncers. More at withcococktails.com, and on the WithCo Kickstarter page (the funding campaign runs through early October).
Since 2012, Nashville cocktail mixer company Eli Mason’s been focused on helping cocktail fans “reclaim your happy hour,” with mixers and bar basics from Mint Julep and Old Fashioned mixers to grenadine and Gomme syrup. If you’re not into pre-mixed cocktails, those basics will still probably appeal to you — most of their creations are flexible, and the company’s very forthcoming with recipes that’ll deliver something delicious, creative and still requiring relatively little effort. Learn more/shop at elimason.com.
If you love a Sunday-afternoon Bloody Mary and you haven’t gotten acquainted with Nashville’s Walker Feed Co., it’s really worth remedying that — their spicy Southern Bloody Mary Mix makes a cocktail that’d hold its own with any of the best brunch spots in the city. That’s not all Walker makes — they have fruity margarita mixes and cool cocktail rimming salts and more — but it’s really, really hard to beat their Bloody. (Hot Chicken enthusiasts might also try their Walker’s Party Fowl Nashville Hot Bloody Mary Mix, a team-up that’s spiked with that Gulch-area restaurant’s habanero-laced spice rub.) More/shop at walkerfeedco.com.
Right now, local cocktail experts Jon and Lindsay Yeager of PourTaste only have two mixer products available for their E Harlow line: their Pristine Tonic, and Magnolia Bitters. But they’re the work of people who seriously know their stuff (the Yeagers are the founders of the Nashville Cocktail Festival and have helped design bar programs for restaurants throughout the city), so they’re fittingly impressive. The Pristine Tonic isn’t what you think of when you hear “tonic” — this isn’t fizzy stuff to cut gin, it’s deep and herbaceous and probably not something you’ve had elsewhere. The Magnolia Bitters, according to PourTaste, are the first ones on the market since the 19th century, with light and floral flavors that, again, won’t taste like anything you’ve had at any old bar. The makers recommend trying it in Mules and Manhattans. Learn more/shop at pourtaste.com.
Local company White’s Elixirs also focuses on natural/organic ingredients, and also bottles up an assortment of drink mixers and bar staples, from familiar cocktails (like Moscow Mule mix and Hot-N-Spicy Margarita mix) to ingredients for more boundary-pushing cocktails, like Saigon Cinnamon or habanero simple syrups. Their mixers are available at a bunch of Nashville shops, including the similarly named White’s Mercantile in 12 South and The Turnip Truck in East Nashville/The Gulch. Learn more at whiteselixirs.com.
Hope these offer inspiration for your cocktail nights at home.
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