Tabbuli, a Mediterranean-influenced restaurant and hookah lounge has initiated a friendly competition between their bartending staff to create a customized cocktail for patrons who then select their personal favorite between the two unique drinks.
The patron selects the base spirit and the mixologists take it from there. The bartenders are required to create a new drink for each tab: no duplications are permitted.
Maeve Webster of “The Sip” reports on the current industry trend of customization “... As more consumers seek out craft beverages and premium drinks, many restaurants and retailers are taking their own beverage programs to the next level in order to set themselves apart. Now you'll find artisan juice flights, tableside cocktail service, even coffee shops roasting beans to individual customer specifications. And while these unique beverage options certainly earn press and attention, they also speak to overall industry trends like customization and the integration of technology with the dining experience.” Locally, The Gin Joint has always provided a menu for guests to select the profiles that best describe their cocktail preferences.
FIG offers a similarly influenced menu for its Manhattans: customers choose the base spirit, the vermouth and a specific bitter.
Bloody Mary “bars” around town are also buying in to this trend of “my way.”
Tales of the Cocktail Festival reports that many bars are embracing the “made to order” process along with using local ingredients.
Roving cocktail carts stocked with bourbon for tableside creations and absinthe carts are making the rounds at trend-forward restaurants and bars.
This interactive cocktail program is available at Tabbuli's two locations: West Ashley at 2026 Savannah Highway and downtown at 6 North Market.
$18 is the cost of your “ticket” to play Dueling Cocktails.
The competitive and interactive ordering method has wide appeal across all drinking audiences. Those looking to discover a new beverage, those who value the customer service aspects of this program and the continuing lure of having a custom cocktail contribute to its success.
As a result of the duels, two cocktails have been added to the permanent menu at Tabbuli: the Gin Bobby, a play on the Gin Ricky using Hat Trick Gin, St. Germain, rhubarb bitters and fresh lime juice; and the Moonshine Julep utilizing peach-infused moonshine and Cathead Pecan Vodka.