Cheers April/May 2018

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 19 of 59 20 • April/May 2018 The agave-based spirit thrives on-premise By Jack Robertiello T equila's image and appeal has seen a boost in recent years, thanks to creative twists and contemporary craft-style cocktails using the agave-based spirit. The growth of high-end sippers, through fl ights and other marketing efforts, has also broadened consumer and trade awareness and knowledge of tequila. Barrio operates fi ve units in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area, but it's the downtown fl agship where tequila does best. "Tequila is fairly popular now, more of a standard spirit rather than a niche market like it used to be," says general manager Erik Haglind. "A lot more people are knowledgeable about the differences in tequilas, where in the past, even people who worked in the industry didn't really know a lot." Then there's the Margarita, the number-one cocktail in the U.S. The drink's popularity was initially fueled by Mexican and Tex-Mex-themed operations, but it's become more mainstream and more upscale. "People love a well-crafted and fresh Margarita," says Mat Snapp, beverage director at Phoenix, AZ, based-Fox Restaurant Concepts, which includes fi ve Blanco Tacos + Tequila units. Las Perlas in Los Angeles serves Happy Hour Margaritas and Palomas through a draft system by the glass or pitcher. Las Perlas in Los Angeles serves Happy PHOTO CREDIT: PETER STANISLAUS

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