Booze 101

Barrio Intros Cocktail and Spirits Classes

Beginning this month, barman Casey Robison schools Seattleites in the art of mixing drinks.

By Jessica Voelker August 11, 2011

Casey Robison and hat decorate a cover of Seattle Times insert “NW Ticket & Movietimes.”

Photo: Barrio via Facebook

Seattleites love to nerd out on the stuff they love. Why buy a jar of jam when you could spend the entire weekend chopping and boiling strawberries? Why just eat gnocchi at an Italian restaurant when you can attend a six-hour, $300 master class on how to make it? Shamanic journeying, Flirting 101, Inexpensive Global Volunteering, Intro to Fly Fishing, Herbs in Topical Skin Care: If it exists, Seattle has a class for it. That’s just how it goes around here.

Cocktails are no different. We don’t just want to drink them, tip the bartender, and be on our way. We want to explore the intricacies of their ingredients, fill notebooks with pro tips on how best to prepare them. We want to infuse, muddle, stir, and shake as if it was our job. That way, when we go back east for Thanksgiving, our sisters can make loud snoring noises as we explain what a Lewis bag is, or why this Islay scotch is smokier than that one from the Lowlands.

And now, finally, we arrive at the point of this post: Barrio bar manager Casey Robison sends word that beginning August 27, the bar will host a five-part series on cocktails and spirits. The classes cost $50 each (attend all five for $225), and each begins at 2pm and lasts between 60 and 90 minutes. Robison—great depth of knowledge, zero pretension, tattoos—teaches; if the series is a success there will be more in the future, he says.

Here’s what will be covered: 08/27: Latin Drinks; 09/10: Spirits I (gin, vodka, and brandy); 09/24: Spirits II (whiskey, tequila, rum); 10/8: Classic Cocktails (1805-1930); 10/22: Contemporary Cocktails (1950-present).

The classes are limited to about 16 people, call this number to reserve a space: 206-838-3853.

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