After I recently moved to Columbus, Ohio I didn’t know very many people and wanted to find a way to build friendships. I was always intrigued by making cocktails and the art of mixology but was limited to just making a classic Manhattan. One day, my partner invited some friends out for a happy hour after work at a bar that is known for its craft cocktails. It is there that I met Michelle who had recently just finished cocktail classes by Cris Dehlavi. Cris is one of the best known bartenders in the world and offers classes to anyone who is interested in learning about mixology. At the happy hour, Michelle kept going on about how she learned about different topics like how to create bitters, infusions, and syrups. At the time, all of those terms seemed like a foreign language to me and I told her I wanted to also learn from Cris. It was at this moment, that she suggested my partner and I take some classes and join this little group about cocktails. It’s just a local gathering of a few spirited friends where we each bring a cocktail and also an item of food. It was these cocktail potlucks, cocklucks for short, which changed my life and helped us dive into the world of mixology all while growing friendships and having fun times. We continued to have a cocktail potluck every month, rotating between each host home.
Upon reflection, it is amazing how much each of us have grown as home bartenders. We started out making basic manhattans and now are making cocktails with different infusions and shrubs that professional bartenders use.
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