Ask any L.A. cocktail geek and they'll tell you that the party of 2012 was Art Beyond the Glass, a fundraising event by Thirsty in LA blogger Daniel Djang and Cole’s bartender Zahra Bates. The party afforded a rare chance for those outside the close-knit L.A. bartending community to view the bar folks in a new light. Not only were their artistic skills on canvas, turntables, film and stage showcased, but if you stuck around long enough you also witnessed just what those bartenders could do on the dance floor.
This Sunday Art Beyond the Glass II (ABTG II) is upping the swank by taking over members-only Los Angeles Athletic Club’s new bar Invention from 3:30 to 7:30 p.m.
With even more bartender-artists involved, it’s a bigger and better party featuring the likes of Pour Vous’ Dave Fernie on the turntables (he stole the show at last year’s event), Writer’s Room’s Joshua Lucas and Jordan Gold performing magic and a “Whisky for Words” poetry reading by L.A. bartenders. Also, bar folks Justin Pike (The Tasting Kitchen), Gabriella Mlynarczyk (ink), Eugene Lee (Big Bar) and more will showcase their artwork. Additional art will be available for purchase or guests can try winning it from the silent auction.
ABTG II is looking to repeat its title as party of the year with its amount of booze and bartending all stars. Over 30 bartenders are grouped together in sponsored teams, like “Team Del Maguey” and “Team Belvedere aka Team Handsome," churning out cocktail recipes special to the event. Here’s a peek at just a fraction of the cocktails that will be served up. (The list is still a work in progress and a lot of drinks don’t have names yet.)
Beau Du Bois (Corner Door): “Taco Truck” with La Nina del Mezcal, pineapple and cinnamon-infused Campari, Carpano Antica, mole bitters.
Brady Weise (1886 Bar): “Panic at the Pisco” with Pisco Porton, lime juice, St. Vincent pineapple gum syrup, Angel City IPA, yuzu bitters.
Brent Falco, Cari Hah and Zahra Bates of Cole’s: Alcoholipops with flavors like lemon and Cedilla (acai).
Brittani Rae (Goldie’s): Pisco Parton, lemon-lime meringue, Chareau aloe, honey habanero and soda water.
Christopher Day (Cole’s): “Old Fostered” with Zaya rum, Miracle Mile Chocolate-Chili Bitters, Java Juice, fried banana demerara syrup. “Boom. Boozy Bananas Foster.”
Giovanni Martinez (Sadie): “Oaxacan Czech Point” with Del Maguey Crema de Mezcal, Coke, Becherovka ice cream.
Jason Schiffer (320 Main): Leblon Cachaca punch with lemon, lime, blueberry-cucumber-sage shrub and lavender spice bitters.
Kate Grutman (Soho House West Hollywood): “La Bonita” with Bombay Sapphire gin, Granny Smith apple-infused dry vermouth, sour cherry bitters, lime, club soda.
Michelle Bearden (320 Main): "Larkin Park" with Aviation gin, Sayuri Nigori sake, lemon juice, simple syrup, Granny Smith apple.
Paul Sanguinetti (Patina Restaurant Group): “Turf Club” with Aviation gin, dry vermouth, maraschino, absinthe rinse, Miracle Mile PFunkLA Crunk Drops bitters.
Ricky Yarnall (formerly of The Parish): Belvedere Intense unfiltered, Miracle Mile celery bitters, salted simple syrup.
Thirsty? Tickets for the event are $50 and are all inclusive—cocktails, food and entertainment. If you’ve been thinking about getting an LAAC membership, now’s your chance as those who sign up for one will get 50 percent off their ABTG II tickets. All proceeds from the event will go to non-profit Art Share LA.