The last time we caught up with the ladies of Owl’s Brew, business partners Jennie Ripps and Maria Littlefield were in the planning phase for a weekly summer happy hour in partnership with a BFB pop-up location. That plan came to fruition a few months later when they debuted the promotion that made New Yorkers do a whiplash inducing double-take–5-cent Owl’s Brew cocktails from 6 to 8 p.m. every Wednesday.
In the land of overpriced everything, it came as no surprise when the buzz around this special grew at a rapid pace and was quickly producing lines that stretched down Gansevoort Street. The price was certainly unbelievable–but so were the cocktails! I sampled the Tinder-inspired “Right Swipe,” which blends Owl’s Brew with rum, cilantro and chiles, and sweeter mix-ups like “Santea” that brings Owl’s Brew and white wine together (recipe below).
With the promotion’s end now in sight, I got a chance to chat with Owl’s Brew Founder & CEO Jennie Ripps to see how she’s feeling after a busy summer and what’s next for the rapidly growing brand.
The Couch Sessions: Now that your 5-cent summer cocktail promotion is coming to a close, would you say it was good exposure for Owl’s Brew?
Jennie Ripps: It was such an amazing opportunity to expose “boozers & sippers” to Owl’s Brew in our hometown. We loved the program, and it really took off. We tracked it with tokens–our first week we served about 30 5-cent cocktails. In the past two weeks we’ve served 456!
The Couch Sessions first caught up with you back in March. Aside from the summer promo, what’s new with Owl’s Brew since then?
We’ve been growing! We’ll be at all West Elm stores this fall and we are launching at Whole Foods in the Rocky Mountains. We’ll also have a DIY guide to making tea cocktails coming out next year, which we are thrilled about.
Owl’s Brew is in stores across the country and available online, but what can we expect next from your fast-growing brand?
Well, we’re super excited about our book. It’s more than a year away but it will be such a wonderful tool for DIY tea cocktails. We also have a really fun Halloween program planned locally in NYC in early October. Let’s just say it involves a few tricks and lots of treats. More to come on that one!
With fall fast approaching, do you have any suggestions for mixing Owl’s Brew into some of the season’s most popular flavors?
Coco-Lada’s base is a Masala Chai, so it’s really perfect for this season. One of our recipes, “Gingerbread Beer” calls for Coco-Lada, spiced rum, ginger liqueur, and a stout beer. We also love the fact that both the Classic & Coco-Lada can be heated up–they are great ways to a yummy, warming toddy in no time at all.
But since summer isn’t over quite yet–what has your favorite summer concoction been? What do you plan on mixing up for Labor Day?
*makes one 60oz pitcher of Sangria
32oz Owl’s Brew The Classic (1 bottle)
750ml (25.4oz) White Wine (1 bottle)
*we suggest a pino grigio
Fresh peach – chopped
Fresh blueberries – half carton
In a pitcher, combine The Classic, White Winte, Combier and fresh fruit. Chill for 75 minutes and serve on the rocks or in a wine glass.
*makes one 4.5oz cocktail
1.5oz Owl’s Brew Coco-Lada
.5oz Lime Juice
Fresh Lime Slice
In a shaker, combine Coco-Lada, Mezcal, and lime juice. Shake with ice. Strain and pour into a coupe glass. Garnish with fresh lime.
A big thanks to Jennie, Maria and the people over at BFB for the incredible cocktail creations and spreading the word about an affordable, creative and delicious mixer. If you didn’t get a chance to sample one of the Owl’s Brew concoctions at BFB this summer, head over to their website to check out their easy drink recipes and find the nearest location to get some of your very own!