Drink Slingers Vendor Spotlight - AKA Mixology, Elevating Your Spirits
If science intersects with entertaining, can magnificent things happen? This was the hypothesis that precipitated Alicia Kim's foray into mixology, which ultimately led to her creating her business AKA Mixology –small batch cocktail syrups that are fully customizable to meet the needs of the consumer or establishment.
Alicia has worn many hats –process engineer, high school physics teacher, stay at home mom– but it was her passion for innovative food and drinks that led her to this industry. Her goal, when considering how to marry her love of science with her love of entertaining, was to create products that combine interesting ingredients and allow the natural flavors to shine through. And it just so happens that her mixers make crafting cocktails approachable for the home consumer and ease the workload for the professional bartender. Drink Slingers love working with AKA Mixology syrups for this reason. And because they are delicious.
Alicia was inspired by the modernist food movement, particularly Dave Arnold's book, Liquid Intelligence: The Art and Science of the Perfect Cocktail, while her own palate begged for something new.
"I’ve always disliked mimosas, mostly because it has no visual appeal. The sparkling wine is elegant and part of the enjoyment is to watch the bubbles move up the glass, then when you take that sip, there is a distinct tingling of your taste buds. The bubbles contribute to this sense of mystique, but when you add a juice to turn it into a mimosa, you lose all the sparkle. My quest was to find a way to have a mimosa and keep the sparkle."
A quick Google search led to the discovery of a subset of people who shared her exact sentiment. After unsuccessfully substituting flavorings for real juices, Alicia discovered Arnold’s method for clarifying juice. The “at-home” clarification process proved to be arduous so she invested in a large laboratory centrifuge.
And then she had to justify the purchase of the lab centrifuge, so she created AKA Mixology.
We asked Alicia what she liked most about both her job and events.
"I love the creative process. I’ve had customers make requests for things that I’ve never seen before and I’m challenged to create it. Most of the flavor of fruits and vegetables are bound in the cell walls, so you have to figure out how to extract all that natural goodness. That’s where knowing the science comes in handy!
I also love seeing the attendees [at events] enjoy themselves. One nice thing about my job is that if you want a cocktail, you’re going to enjoy it. If not, have a second one. It’s like cake and ice cream at a kid's birthday party. It makes everyone happy."
And Alicia's words of wisdom when planning an event?
"Make sure your expectations are within your budget. Quality over quantity. Splurge on something memorable, whether it be the most expensive, odd, or 'you' thing ... that’s what people will remember."
We couldn't agree more. Thank you, Alicia!
For more information on Alicia's syrups check out her website.