The Tasting Panel magazine

January/February 2015

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16  /  the tasting panel  / january/february 2015 Elizabeth Williams, author and President/ Director of the SoFAB Institute, walking through the history of the cocktail at the Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles. Brief Encounters Whether THE TASTING PANEL goes to the brand execs or the brands call us, there is an abundance of news to report, from the latest releases to behind-the-scenes experiences with some of the world's most influential importers, winemakers, distillers . . . well, you name it. We may not have enough pages in each issue to devote as much attention as we would like to each person whose path we cross, but please note that if it's in the publication, we deem it noteworthy. —Meridith May, Publisher & Editorial Director THE MESSAGE 16  /  the tasting panel  /  january/february 2015 PHOTO: NINO ANDONIS Taking a Look Back O n a clear, warm L.A. night in early December, an eclectic group of cocktail and spirits enthusiasts filled the rooftop lounge at the Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles. After a round of Fish House Punch, we gathered around the small pool to enjoy a lecture put on by The Museum of the American Cocktail (a division of the SoFAB Institute, which documents and celebrates the food and drink of all cultures). Given by Elizabeth Williams—author and President/Director of the SoFAB Institute—the talk, entitled "The Complete History of the Cocktail (Abridged)," began with the history of fermentation and wove its way through distillation and Prohibition, before ending on an open-ended question about what the future might hold for spirits. No cocktail history lesson would be complete without a few—you guessed it—cocktails, which Dan Sabo, the Ace Hotel's Beverage Manager, expertly curated to coincide with Williams's topics. And thanks to the persistence of Phillip Dobard, Vice President of the SoFAB Institute and the evening's emcee, we even had the pleasure of reliving the glory days of the Long Island Iced Tea. What a long way we have come! —Emily Coleman

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