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The Speakeasy

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The Speakeasy

Heritage Radio Network

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Hosts Damon Boelte, Sother Teague, and Greg Benson sit down to talk cocktails, spirits, wine, beer, tea, coffee, and all the other exciting liquids in the universe. With each episode, learn from some of the world’s experts in mixology, bar history, distillation, and brewing. Bringing on guests ranging from bartenders and brewers, alchemists and ambassadors, roasters and regulars, and every expert and enthusiast in between, The Speakeasy introduces listeners to all the unique ways we enjoy im ...
 
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It’s been four months, but we’re finally back from break. And this week I have my friend Al Thompson on the show to talk his position as Beverage Director for Thip Khao and Hanumanh in Washington DC. This position is somewhat of a departure for him as he has spent the last several years working as the bar manager for Chef Jose Andres’ modernist coc…
 
Tetsuro Miyazaki of Iichiko Shochu joins the band to talk about the history of this wonderful and unique spirit, how hard it is to get Americans to drink distilled spirits with a meal, and how he’s found a sneaky little workaround. Plus Greg is finally back from his road trip - highlights on Instagram at @100ProofGreg - and the wonders of mold! Don…
 
Grab some sunscreen and join us as founder of Bahamian craft cocktail bar Bon Vivants, Kyle Jones, joins us from the islands! We discuss the slow rise of cocktail culture on the island and talk about the challenges of training bartenders who’ve never made a cocktail, to becoming one of Tales of the Cocktail's nominees for best new international bar…
 
Iconic producer, writer, and artist, Nile Rodgers, walks Jared through his connection with the recently launched NAS x Audio Up NFT and how the project tracks back to a deep connection Nile has with Nelson Mandela. He explains the origin of some of his most well known songs, including David Bowie's Let's Dance. The two also chat about the impact Ni…
 
Georgette Moger-Petraske sits down with the band and talks oysters. Did you know a single oyster can filter 40 gallons of water over its lifetime? Did you know oysters are still technically alive when you eat them? Did you know you can fill an entire hour of radio talking about oysters and cocktails? Because you totally can. Don’t forget to click S…
 
On a special bonus episode of the Speakeasy Greg, Damon and Sother sit down to talk about some breaking news in the industry. As cases rise again and mask mandates loom a number of restaurateurs have taken it upon themselves to institute vaccine requirements. What that means for the industry - and the rest of us - on a special breaking news edition…
 
Marc Farrell, founder and CEO of Ten to One Rum sits down with the band to talk rum culture, what he has in common with Tony Stark and the future of commerce as we all move into the brave new world of hybrid online/irl drinking. Plus: College Bars! Can we go back again? Spoiler alert: no. Image courtesy of Ten to One Rum 🔥🔥Join us each week as indu…
 
Beer writer and homebrewer extraordinaire Mandy Naglich geeks out with Greg about farmhouse styles, subtlety and the future of brewing. Plus a quick checkin on the state of hard seltzer. Spoiler alert, it’s doing just fine. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother…
 
Gin fan and certified New Yorker Lacy Hawkins joins the band to gab about bees, bikes, the best way to beat the heat with a martini and the benefit of tiny boozy snacks. Oh, and gin I guess too. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide…
 
Aubrey Slater and David Suk of Saint Luna spirits regale the band with tales of launching a brand, working in the world of spirits as members of the LGBTQ community and good ol’ fashioned Moonshinin’! Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with …
 
Amaro distiller and unwittingly vegan meat producer Louis Catizone sits down with Greg and Sother to talk innovation, adventuring into the RTD market and the surprising spots on our bodies that can sense bitter flavors. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Tea…
 
Seattle’s Anu Apte sits down with Greg and Sother to talk about flipping concepts, non-stop education and designing a cocktail for a 200-year-old flag with squares cut out of it. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide range of hospit…
 
In a world where RTDs are everywhere, Bronya Shillo, founder and CEO of Fisher’s Island Lemonade, was one of the first to think ‘huh, this is pretty good. I should put this in a can.’ Now seven years since she sent her first cases to market, Bronya joins the band to talk pioneering in a now very crowded field and what it’s like to be a woman and do…
 
Sullivan Doh has seemingly done it all, and just seems to be garnering more respect from the community each time he shifts his focus. He became enamored with fine dining at quite a young age working at Michelin-starred restaurants in London. It was there that he decided that, if he were going to make a career of hospitality, he needed to get into b…
 
Sign language interpreter, absinthe maven, ukulele hero, and all-around ray of sunshine, Jessica Graves, sits down with the band to talk makin’ absinthe in the lone star state, and branching out into the exciting world of floral amaro. #HRN10Years #DrinkingOnTheRadio Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week …
 
Jeff Morgenthaler, 25 year veteran of the bartending world talks with Greg and Sother about how bars have changed, how people stay the same and what it’s like to love something and clean up its puke at the same time. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague…
 
Mark Barrett of Diageo Bar Academy sits down with Greg and Sother to talk education, how we can make the most of our now extremely online lives and what we can do to never stop learning. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide range o…
 
Charles Joly has witnessed and been a part of the craft cocktail renaissance since the beginning. After starting as a bar back in a high volume, underground Chicago club, he moved on and moved up – finally taking the reins at The Drawing Room in Chicago. And he realized that hospitality was his forever career. And he had a knack for it. After one o…
 
Oaxaca returns! Carlos Moreno and Txomin Alcorta join Greg live from Mexico to talk mezcal (and rum, and gin, and whiskey, and vodka) as well as what it means to create, innovate and reinvent, whether it’s a business that’s been in your family for generations or an entire spirit. And of course there’s lots of geeking out over agave. Don’t forget to…
 
Aaron Polsky and Erin Hayes sit down with the band to talk Livewire drinks, a new line of canned cocktails with the heart of rock n’ roll. What can Led Zeppelin and Guns n’ Roses teach us about making great cocktails and building a more equitable industry? Tune in to find out. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us …
 
Sother sits down to talk with Mark Schettler of Bar Tonique in New Orleans. Mark is a longtime advocate of the hospitality, tourism, service and nightlife sectors spanning issues of abuse, mental health and, now governance over topics that directly impact how we do business in a post pandemic landscape. Check out his work at ShiftChange.NGO Don’t f…
 
Bailey Pryor’s achievements are impressive. He is the recipient of several Emmy awards, has written, directed, and produced scores of movies and documentaries, and is the leading authority on notorious rum runner, Bill McCoy. And he’s barely over 50-years-old. F. Scott Fitzgerald famously said there are no second acts in life. But, Bailey’s years o…
 
The one and only Caroline Rosen joins the band for the Speakeasy’s first semi-live recording in over a year! Cocktail conferences have changed forever and she has some pretty good ideas about keeping the best parts and building back better. Tune in to hear about the future of festivals as well as some dope ideas for events when we can all meet and …
 
Cachaça pioneer and sustainability beacon Dragos Axinte joins the band to talk distilling, going carbon negative and how Novo Fogo is saving the planet one bottle at a time. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide range of hospitality…
 
It’s the return of André Darlington! The last time he was on the show we were discussing his now-bestselling cocktail book, Booze & Vinyl. And now he’s back to discuss his new book that took him around the world on a cocktail adventure, just months before travel restrictions and COVID-19 shut down the kind of trip he was on. Now he’s back and his n…
 
It’s a very special pandemic St. Patrick’s Day! Again! Jillian Vose of Dead Rabbit joins Greg and Sother to talk about the big day last year, what’s changed since then and what it’s like to run a bar and write a book in lockdown. For more of Greg’s thoughts on losing a second St. Paddy’s Day in a row you can check out his writing here: 100proofgreg…
 
Live from Reykjavik Teitur Riddermann Schiöth joins the band to talk traditional Icelandic spirits, (mmm, aquavit!) building an iconic bar on the edge of the Arctic circle and what he’s working on next. Plus, The Speakeasy has been nominated for the Taste Awards! Check out all the finalists at http://www.thetasteawards.com/12th-annual-taste-awards-…
 
PLEASE NOTE: This episode mentions several links and articles. They are available at the bottom of these show notes. Sother Teague is no stranger to Shift Drink. We’ve been planning on doing a show together for years. But my first visit to his show, The Speakeasy, also included the venerable Simon Ford. So yours truly sat and listened. One does not…
 
Eight generation Beam Distiller Freddie Noe joins the band to talk about growing into the family business and how his Little Book series lead to experimentation within that legacy. The Speakeasy is nominated as a Taste Awards "Viewer's Choice" finalist. Help us win by voting today! 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Te…
 
Misty Kalkofen needs no introduction in the spirits community — or if you listened to my interview her on our last episode,Drinking Like Misty Kalkofen Pt. 1. But regardless of whether or not you’re familiar with her work, you’ve likely encountered it. After spending the first half of her career behind Boston bars as a protégé of Brother Cleve, she…
 
Bertha González Nieves, co-founder and CEO of Tequila Casa Dragones talks about crafting a unique and inspiring tequila by doing things the hard way. Plus a US/Mexico bartender exchange program, because who doesn’t love a little friendly competition? Check out @casadragones on instagram to learn more.Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the sho…
 
Bottomless: The Bloody Mary, and the curiously counter-culture history of brunch. This is a special presentation of Back Bar, hosted by our very own Greg Benson. Back Bar is a rollicking deep dive into the events, phenomenon, relationships and human foibles that shaped the world’s most iconic drinks. Each episode features industry luminaries like D…
 
Elizabeth McCall, Assistant Master Distiller at Woodford Reserve joins the band to talk, what else, whiskey and chocolate AKA the perfect Valentine’s Day gift for that special someone. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide range of …
 
Italicus founder Giuseppe Gallo talks about his journey from making lemoncello beside his mother as a child to speaking to his grandmother about Rosolio and reviving the lost category. Plus the design and making of his incredibly beautiful bottle! Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders,…
 
Misty Kalkofen has done it all. She was building craft cocktail menus in an era ruled by pre-mixed Long Island Iced Tea. While studying at Harvard Divinity School, she took at job behind the bar and ended up as a protégé of lounge legend and Tikiphile, Brother Cleve. Her dedication to hospitality and quality libations led her to focus her energy on…
 
Chris and Camila of Volley Tequila Soda join Greg and Sother to talk natural flavors, the natural world, and how sneakily often one doesn’t come from the other. Plus, our friend the Rhum Bishop needs your help! Support Eugene’s amazing mission on his sustainable farm by going to gofundme.com/f/bishop-botany-farm to donate. Don’t forget to click SUB…
 
Entrepreneur, rum pioneer and former coconut smuggler Dani Zig joins Greg and Sother to talk about innovation in spirits, respecting your ingredients and how fortunate it is that the US government considers a certain plant nuts, not fruit. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon B…
 
Carrie Abbott started her candy company, Newfangled Confections, back in 2012. But that wasn’t the beginning. This hospitality industry veteran had been running the pastry and service side of a catering company (with my future business partner, Chef Micah Frank) when she made a confection that would alter the direction of her life. After two years …
 
David Vitale of Starward in Melbourne, Australia joins the band to talk eating, drinking and finding a sense of place in a world of whisky. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide range of hospitality and spirits experts from around t…
 
It’s been a wild ride for Vincent Pollard so far. As many bartenders out there, he started in the business with no real knowledge of the craft cocktail scene. But working in Canada for some of the best bars in the country put the hooks in him. He’s since been full speed ahead. His most recent project has taken him to Colombia to work on launching a…
 
As we wrap up the end of the year in our living rooms rather than bars and restaurants, I want you to take a moment and listen to this abbreviated episode about the impending collapse of the hospitality industry. YOU CAN STILL HELP! But that window is closing quickly. I’ve added links below as discussed on the episode this week. Please leave additi…
 
When Randy Prasse took the job to help overhaul the Kentucky Bourbon Festival, didn’t realize that a month later the world would shut down and no one would be able to gather in groups for the entire year. Like everyone, the organizers had to pivot and rethink what a festival could be while everyone was locked down in their own homes. This year, the…
 
Damon, Greg and Sother look back on the past ten years of bartending, and a year that felt like a decade. Don’t forget to click SUBSCRIBE and RATE the show if you can. 🔥🔥Join us each week as industry leaders, Damon Boelte and Sother Teague, sit down with a wide range of hospitality and spirits experts from around the world to discuss everything tha…
 
In the food and beverage world, it’s easy to dismiss companies with wide distribution as “sellouts”. We expect everyone to starve for their art and if they don’t, they become an object of our ire. Angry Orchard falls into that category. Their hard ciders have become so ubiquitous that it can feel (unfairly) that they’re the behemoth that crushes th…
 
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