Cocktails & Spirits

Craft Spirits Festival Coming to Coconut Grove

Tales of the Cocktail is an annual craft spirits festival that takes over New Orleans for one glorious weekend every July. But, as large as this festival is now, it started with humble beginnings.

Eddy and Tony Delamaza, owners of Big Game Liquors, had a vision that Miami could be the home of the next big spirits event. They partnered with Frank Moreno, an events producer to create the Craft Spirits Festival.

See also: Tales of the Cocktail: Miami Bartenders Shake Up New Orleans

On October 10, the Cruz Building in Coconut Grove will host the event. From 8 to 11 p.m., attendees will have the opportunity to sample over two dozen brands of craft and premium spirits, with many of these whiskies, rums, and vodkas made in limited edition small batches. Many of the brands are from small artisanal distilleries in the United States that are not owned by corporate monoliths.

The growth in craft distilling in the United States is one of the largest expansions of the industry since prohibition with distilleries making bourbon in Colorado, rum in New Jersey, gin in Philadelphia, and vodka right here in Miami.

Event producer Frank Moreno tells Short Order that the idea of the festival is to allow spirits enthusiasts the opportunity to taste new products before they invest in them.

"Attendees can expect an opportunity to not only sample many incredible spirits, but they will have an opportunity to meet either the distiller or brand ambassadors and learn about what makes their products special and distinctive. Being able to try different brands of the same spirits in one event helps to establish a benchmark for people to understand what best fits their palates. It is an educational experience. We expect people to have a great and entertaining evening."

In addition to straight spirits, several brands will be presenting cocktails along with their samples and there will be a special bar presentation with the United States Bartenders Guild (USBG) presenting some of Miami's finest mixologists who will be shaking up interesting and innovative cocktails.

General admission tickets are $75 and VIP tickets are $95, which includes early entry into the festival at 7 p.m. New Times readers can receive $20 off a VIP ticket by using promo code MNT at checkout. Tickets include samples plus complimentary hors d'oeuvres and Cigars on the terrace and Live Art. Tickets are available at Brown Paper Tickets.

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Laine Doss is the food and spirits editor for Miami New Times. She has been featured on Cooking Channel's Eat Street and Food Network's Great Food Truck Race. She won an Alternative Weekly award for her feature about what it's like to wait tables.
Contact: Laine Doss