ETHAN + ASHE
[October 2016] - With farm-to-table restaurants popping up in cities and towns everywhere, the trend for clean eating is now heading towards the bar scene. Craft cocktail-making is on the rise, with celebrated bartenders touting fresh ingredients in their concoctions, rather than serving them with artificial, chemically-produced flavors. And customers are turning to these more organic drinks, sipping on libations using fruits and botanicals. With the aim of encouraging this healthy trend and making it more accessible, Ethan + Ashe founder, Jason Carignan, created the Alkemista, an all-in-one infusion vessel that uses these fresh ingredients to transform ordinary alcohol into extraordinary spirits, bitters, and cocktails.
"There is a new level of awareness these days," says Carignan, "People are more concerned with what they put in their bodies. They aren’t interested in artificial flavors and colors. They crave authentic ingredients they can pronounce, and still desire a rich, flavorful experience."
Carignan teamed up with Los Angeles bartender, Karl Steuck, and found that top mixologists were using spirits infused with real fruits and botanicals, rather than alcohols that offer chemically-created flavors. "I realized then that the key to crafting an amazing cocktail was quite literally within the spirit. I began to experiment with my own infusions using fresh ingredients, but found it to be a messy, unwieldy process, and knew there had to be an easier way." The Ethan + Ashe design team set to work, sketching and creating prototypes, aiming to develop a tool useful for both the professional and the home bartender. After more than 12 months of development, the Alkemista was created.
Launching on Kickstarter in October 2016, and ultimately to market in early 2017, the all-in-one Alkemista combines the ultra-fine filtering technology of Japanese teapots with the timeless design of a glass liquor bottle. Its construction offers a lab-quality borosilicate glass vessel and a removable surgical steel infusion filter. Users simply add fruits, spices, or botanicals to the filter, (which holds up to 250 ml of infusion ingredients), and then add the base alcohol to the leak-proof bottle to let the flavors and aromas mingle until it reaches the desired level of taste. The filter keeps unwanted particles from entering the liquid during the infusion process and can be easily removed for serving directly from the Alkemista, and for elegant storage afterwards. The modern aesthetic of the glass bottle holds the spirit sleekly, whether sitting on a bar or while being served.
"With Alkemista's all-in-one design, it’s been really easy to craft all sorts of unique spirits and cocktails for any amount of guests," says Carignan. "It lets the creator be creative, the drinks taste amazing, and the possibilities are pretty limitless- I’ve even found myself heading out to my home garden for cocktail inspiration. Talk about drinking local!"
Many popular bars and restaurants have also brought locality to their premises, with their own on-site gardens that they use as a source for fresh ingredients. First planted to enhance their culinary offerings, fruits, herbs, and botanicals are now also being harvested for use in their bars. Karl Steuck confirms this trend, and has long been an advocate for creating drinks and infusions with locally produced ingredients. "Craft-cocktail making has become an art form," he says. "There was a time and a place for a drink made with grenadine and garnished with a maraschino cherry. But now we have the ability to create so much more. One merely needs to utilize the garden as an artist’s palette for the palate, and you’ll make a masterpiece every time."
The Alkemista Kickstarter project launches on October 13, 2016. The campaign runs through November 11, 2016, and offers backers the opportunity to purchase an Alkemista at a price below its retail value. Early backers can take advantage of early bird specials that provide an even further discount.The Alkemista Kickstarter Campaign has also just released stretch goals that provide added values to all backers when the set benchmarks are hit.
To help the Alkemista come to life and bring farm-to-glass cocktails to a home, bar, or social gathering near you, consider donating to the campaign, or sharing the information with others. To follow the Alkemista project, be sure to find it on Twitter (@ethanashebrand), Facebook (@ethanashebrand), or Instagram (@ethanashebrand), or visit www.ethanashe.com
About Ethan Ashe
Ethan Ashe is a company forged out of the idea of entertaining the finer things in life with good friends. Its team of designers, creators, thinkers, and foodies are dedicated to bringing new home and bar tools to market that enhance enjoyment of affairs large and small, promoting the shared experience of living life to the fullest.
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If you’d like more information about the Alkemista, or if you’d like to schedule an interview with its creator, Jason Carignan, please send an email to Rachel McKnett at email@example.com or send a tweet or direct message to @ethanashebrand on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.