Thursday, January 26, 2017

Three People Bar Owners and Bartenders Should Thank

Bar and tavern owners, as well as their bartenders, should pause for a few seconds each day to give thanks to these three great men.  These men provided them the opportunity to earn a living, generate profits and be rewarded with huge tips. This article highlights the three greatest bar legends: Henry, Facundo and Jose.

Henry, the son of Wales farmer, became famous in the British Navy not as a sailor but as a privateer (which by the way - was not a pirate).  During the 17th -century. Henry earned the reputation of being one of the most successful privateers in the Royal Navy. When the British finally succeeded in ousting the Spanish fleet from the Caribbean, the King of England personally appointed Henry the Lt Governor of Jamaica from {1664-65}.

Henry did not like government work though so he resigned to become a land owner in Jamaica. On his land, Henry grew all sorts of wonderful spices native to Jamaica. Henry also loved rum - so he grew his own sugar cane so he could to distill it into rum. Henry wanted a unique flavor of rum so he infused the rum he produced with the favorite spices he grew.

Though Henry made all his rum in Jamaica he chose to call it a product of Puerto Rico - is true! - because that’s where Henry first enjoyed the wonderful taste of rum. Yes, the Henry I am talking about is none other than Henry Morgan - Captain Henry Morgan - or who sometimes bar owners and bartenders refer to just as the Captain.  So you see there really was a Captain Morgan. 

Today Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum is the largest selling rum in the United States, Canada, Great Britain and South Africa. The image of a man in a dashing, red coat, with long flowing black hair, standing on one foot - printed on every label is the actual likeness of Captain Morgan.

The Second person bar and tavern owners should thank is Facundo. Facundo was a Spanish wine merchant who immigrated to Cuba in 1830.  While in Cuba, Facundo discovered the wonderful flavor of rum.  At the time, Cuban rum was considered an unrefined drink that only the poorest of peasants would drink. Seldom, was rum ever sold in taverns or fine restaurants. Facundo however liked the taste of rum so much that he decided to use his wine making skills to refine it. 

Facundo worked for years trying to isolate the perfect strain of yeast suitable for properly distilling rum; most important - he even went one step further. He filtered all his rum through charcoal which he believed would to remove any impurities. Finally, Facundo decided to age his rum - just like wine was aged - in fresh white oak barrels.  He thought aging rum would 'mellow its wild flavor'. 

Facundo was the first person to ever produce a “clear or white" rum. Since everyone enjoyed his new rum he set up a distillery in Santiago, Cuba in 1862 in an old warehouse building which was full of fruit bats in the rafters. Working near those bats every day inspired Facundo to create his logo for his rum. 

What many people forget is that Facundo invented two very special drinks the world still loves to this day. The first one he created right after the Spanish War which he called the " Cuba Libre" (which literally means 'Cuba is Free') along with another wonderful drink he created just for the ladies so they to could enjoy his rum. He called his second drink - the Daiquiri.

Facundo always insisted Cuba was the home of rum and his rum - Facudo Bacardi's Rum - became the King of all rums. Ironically the Bacardi distillery he created and used for over 100 years was confiscated by Fidel Castro.  When Castro nationalized all businesses after taking power in Cuba Facundo's family q
uickly decided to move their distillery operation over to a neighboring island - Puerto Rico. 

Today, though Barcardi Rum is distilled in Puerto Rico, it is still called a Cuban Rum. Bacardi rum is the largest privately held spirit production company in the world.

And just so you no there never was a Ron Bacardi. ‘Ron’ which is on the label of every Bacardi bottle is the Spanish word for rum. 

The final man in this story of legends is really amazing. When the Spanish conquistadors arrived in Mexico back in the 1500’s they were introduced to a local drink called 'pulque'. The conquistadors found it disgusting but by using modern techniques they were able to refine the distilling process of pulque and created an entirely new spirit called Mezcal.

King Ferninand the VI of Spain happened to grant a noble Spanish citizen a land grant in Mexico 1758 so he could start a farm in the Mexican state of Jalisco. On his new farm, this Spanish gentleman began to cultivate agave, a native plant that grows wild throughout central Mexico.  Agave by the way is what is distilled to make Mezcal.  However the Spanish farmer only harvested the best agave he grew on his land and by doing so he was able to quickly improve the taste of Mezcal. 

Like the conquistadors he also improved the distilling process for his agave and radically changed the flavor of Mezcal.  In fact, he changed the flavor so much he that he created a new spirit which he named after the village where he lived in Mexico – the village of Tequila.

However his real brilliance was that he did something unheard of. While every distiller at the time always provided their spirits in huge wooden kegs or small wooden casts, Don Jose Antonio de Cuervo decided to try using a new Portuguese invention called the glass bottle.  So Jose bottled all his Tequila. 

As a result, Jose Curveo's Tequila became the most popular selling tequila in the world. Today, Jose Curveo sells 35% of all the tequila sold in the world - twice as much as it nearest competitor.

If you like good bar and tavern trivia do the right thing -  Google Eba Gee. Not only will Eba Gelso share great bar trivia with you - Eba will teach you simple ways to increase your bar and tavern sales as well as earn more in tips. Go ahead connect with Eba Gee either on Face Book or Linked In ... you won't be sorry.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

So You Think You Know the Budweiser Clydesdales

Earlier this week I met with a client.  After we concluded our business we sat down for a social drink. I ordered my usual cocktail and she had a beer - her favorite a Budweiser. 

When I told her I am not a big beer drinker she proceeded to share a story about Budweiser that I was not aware of; it was the story about the Budweiser Clydesdale.  It was so fascinating I thought I would share it with you.

The Budweiser Brewing Company first introduced the Clydesdale's on April 7, 1933 but do you know why?  August Busch Jr. (the son) was so ecstatic that prohibition was going to end that he went out and bought his father August Bush Sr. a gift - eight beautiful Clydesdale horses.

August Sr. was not only impressed with these magnificent creatures but he immediately saw a great idea to help re-launch Budweiser now that prohibition was coming to an end. He decided to present the two people most instrumental in ending prohibition a Budweiser gift. Those two people were the former Governor of New Your Governor - Al Smith and the President of the United States himself - Franklin Roosevelt.

August Sr. bought a huge freight wagon and painted it bright red.  He then mounted several huge barrels on it and hitched his eight Clydesdale horses to it.  He then hired a team of drivers who he had custom clothing made for and they were given instructions to leave St Louis and drive the wagon to New York City.

Once in New York the drivers presented Governor Al Smith a glass of Budweiser beer. From New York, Bush directed his drivers to haul the wagon to Washington D.C.; however, he had them make a circuitous journey across many of the New England and Mid-Atlantic States.  When his team of horses finally arrived at the White House the drivers presented a glass of Budweiser beer to the President of the United States - Franklin D. Roosevelt and all his guests at the White House.

There on the front porch of the White Horse the President of the United States sipped Budweiser beer with his guests as he Washington press corps snapped photos. However the brilliance of Bush Sr. did not end there. 

Before the team of Clydesdales left St Louis for New York Bush dispatched press releases to every town newspaper along the route the horse would travel.  Town’s people from all across the Midwest and eastern parts of America lined the streets to watch these huge Clydesdale's parade through their towns.

The newspapers in each and every town - large or small - printed front page stories of these beautiful, yet behemoth, horses parading through their main streets.  After the horses marched through Main Street the wagon pulled off to the side and every resident in the town was treated to a glass of Budweiser beer to celebrate the repeal of prohibition.

Now what people didn’t know was that the huge barrels on the wagon were empty.  Each night the wagon would meet up with a train that had a fresh shipment of Budweiser beer - hence the beer given away was always fresh during the three week trek across the heartland.

Needless to say "every" newspaper in the country ran stories of this unheard of, and unprecedented "Free Beer" event.  The popularity of Budweiser skyrocketed across America the Bush name was known in every household in the land; hence Budweiser immediately became America's favorite beer.  Realizing how well the country responded to his Clydesdale's, Bush Sr. decided to make the horse a permanent part of the corporate strategy.                              

Today Budweiser Brewing has three "hitches" or teams of Clydesdale's ready to travel around the U.S. at any time and one team that permanently resides at the corporate headquarters of Anheuser-Busch in St Louis.

Anheuser-Bush has approximately 250 Clydesdale's in its stables which makes it the largest Clydesdale herd owner in the world.  Ironically not just any Clydesdale can quality to be on a "Budweiser Hitch".   Only Clydesdale's that meet the following strict criteria are chosen: 

1) They must be Geldings (ouch)

2) They must have an easy going even temperament

3) They must be very strong 

4) They must be at least four years old

5) They must stand at least 18 hands or (6 feet tall) at the withers -(the tallest point on the back)

6) Their weight must be between 1,800 and 2,300 pounds

7) They must be bay in color (a reddish-brown coat)

8) The must have a black mane and tail

9) They must have four white stocks, and

10) They must have a white blaze on their face 

So the next time you see a commercial or the actual Budweiser Clydesdale's stop and remember the genius of August Bush Sr.  A man who took a present his son gave him and turned it into the greatest marketing ploy in the Brewing World.

Just so you know Budweiser is the third largest selling beer in the Unites States slightly behind Coors Light – which is number two and Bud Light with is number 1.

In addition, Budweiser is the fourth largest selling beer in the world just slightly behind Bud Light which is third largest selling beer in world. The top two selling beers in the world are currently both Chinese; Tsingtao and Snow – Snow being the largest beer in the world.