Charles Joly, acclaimed by many as the best bartender in America, is resigning as beverage director at The Aviary in Chicago, effective November 1.
Joly will be succeeded by Micah Melton, who started at The Aviary as ice chef several years ago. Joly is the winner of a James Beard Foundation Award, was named best bartender and best cocktail menu at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans and in July won the Diageo World Class 2014 competition in London where he faced off against 48 other mixologists and won with a creation called Above the Clouds that featured a tiki cocktail theme. Joly will devote more time to his ready-made beverage line called Crafthouse Cocktails, which will soon have its own bottling facility in Michigan City, Indiana. He also intends to travel widely as a cocktail ambassador and contest judge.
Gary, Indiana-based 18th Street Brewery is undergoing an expansion that will double its production capacity by year-end.
The northwest Indiana brewery is replacing its nine seven-barrel fermenters with nine 10-barrel fermenters that will increase production from about 500 barrels a year to more than 1,000, allowing 18th Street to continue growing its distribution footprint throughout the state. An agreement was also recently reached with Starlight Distributors to expand 18th Street’s presence in the Indianapolis area. 18th Street is also installing a new canning line that will see it transition from 22-ounce bottles to cans on almost all of its beer.
Just when the credo of fresh juice in cocktails has permeated every decent bar in America, a shortage of limes and immense spike in price is having some bar owners and managers worrying about the tough reality this poses: increase drink prices or find alternatives to fresh limes?
Even in Mexico, the issue is dire. According to CNN Mexico, prices in the country have spiked to almost 80 pesos ($6) a kilo, so its no surprise that prices here are bad. In a survey of friends across the country, prices have gone from a low of about $25 a case to the current market price of $135 a case.