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Non-Alcoholic, Prohibition-Inspired NA Cocktail Line Emerges from Covid-19 Pandemic

Blind Tiger Spirit-Free Cocktails

A new N/A beverage line has recently emerged as the result of the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic. In March of 2020, Erie, Pennsylvania, bars and restaurants were mandated to takeout only. At the time, Pennsylvania didn't allow for sales of alcohol-to-go, and many bars had to shutter their doors. Room 33 Speakeasy, located at 1033 State Street, Erie, PA, pivoted operations. 

At the time of the shutdown, Room 33 Speakeasy's majority of sales (90%) were bar sales. "Instead of closing our doors, we ramped up our food menu and started bottling non-alcoholic versions of our classic cocktails. These initiatives, alongside the flexibility, creativity, and adaptability of the team, were what kept us alive during these times," notes Rebecca Styn, proprietor of Room 33.

In keeping with the Prohibition theme (1933 is when Prohibition ended), Styn approached the team about bottling classic versions that emerged during the Prohibition era. What started as an in-house initiative has emerged as a line of four classic, RTD, NA, shelf-stable cocktails. The beverages - known as Blind Tiger Spirit-Free Cocktails - are all-natural, organic, gluten-free and mirror the flavors of four renowned prohibition-inspired beverages - Bee's Knees, Ward 8, Southside, and Sidecar.

"Currently, over 30% of the population doesn't drink; yet there are only 29 companies that produce non-alcoholic drinks in the nation and only .005% of the beverage market offers no-alcohol brands. We also knew, given our experience, there were not many creative alternatives in bars and restaurants to help those 'feel part of the occasion' when not drinking. We are looking to change the landscape."

The beverages tell its purported history on the label of the bottle, which comes in 16oz and 32oz glass bottles. The name Blind Tiger is also in line with the theme. Speakeasies were called Blind Tiger's during the Prohibition era. The custom of illegal drinking establishments displayed stuffed tigers to alert potential patrons to the availability of illicit alcohol after hours. The "tigers" were "blind" because the authorities, at least officially, did not know they existed.

Launching in early 2021, Blind Tiger was the grand prize recipient of Ben Franklin Technology PArtners Big Idea competition, taking home the $50K grand prize, and has since completed a successful Kickstarter campaign (252% funded), has been a finalist in Bev.net, a leading beverage-oriented media company's "New Beverage Showdown," and is currently found in several local retail stores, bars and restaurants and online. For more information, please go to: www.blindtigerspiritfree.com or contact Founder, Rebecca Styn at 814-881-9791.

Source: Room 33 Speakeasy

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Categories: Food and Beverage Manufacturing

Tags: beverages, covid-19, non-alcoholic, prohibition