By D. Channing Muller Posted October 13, 2010, 12:44 PM EDT
Bacardi USA celebrated the 500th anniversary of its Benedictine spirit brand on Sunday night with a party for 65 mixologists, bar and nightclub owners, media members, and distributors at Cafeina in Wynwood. Originally created by monks from a blend of 27 herbs, the spirit’s recipe has only been known to a couple of people at any one time in history. In a nod to the spirit’s origins, Bacardi reached out to Team Enterprises to coordinate the alchemy-themed party.
“The root of the brand is really tied to alchemy and taking something that’s normal and making it precious,” said brand manager Cherie Koster. “When we started thinking about its 500th anniversary, we wanted to keep true to the brand and honor the modern alchemist, who is today’s mixologist.”
The event served as one in a series of 10 taking place simultaneously around the country in cities like Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston, with the largest event at a private residence in New York. Team Enterprises’ event staff transformed the Miami lounge into a medieval monastery, with candlelight, fog machines, alchemy bottles as decor, and monks at the main entrance. Contortionists, violinists, and interactive entertainers performed throughout the cocktail party in the main lounge and adjacent patio.
The venue served four Benedictine cocktails, which will remain on the in-house bar menu, along with small bites like mini shrimp and chicken quesadillas with truffle aioli, baby crab croquettes, and mini Kobe beef burgers.
At precisely 10:10 p.m.—a continuation of the “10” theme of the event series and calendar date—the night’s mixologist honoree, Thomas Merolla, bar manager at the W South Beach, led a toast to the brand’s 500th anniversary and thanked guests for attending.