By Chloe Aiello
Fans of movies, bourbon, and 3D printing will be right at home at Tribeca Film Festival this year when Bulleit Frontier Whiskey sets up its 3D Printed Experience ー a 3D bar complete with 3D printed drinks. It's just the latest effort by Bulleit to capture a new type of whiskey consumer.
"At the experience, you can get served a drink in the 3D-printed bar structure. You can also try one of these robotic arm printed cocktails," said Sophie Kelly, senior vice president of North American Whiskeys at Diageo, who clarified that the printed materials in the drinks were actually flavor infusions.
The experience is the result of efforts by Bulleit Frontier Works, a series of projects in which the bourbon company teams up with artists and innovators on the "cultural frontier," Kelly said. For this particular project, Bulleit partnered with Machine Histories, which printed the bar structure, and Print A Drink, which supplied the robotic, drink-printing arm.
The project has incredible wow factor, but the philosophy at the core of it is simpler: Bulleit wants to appeal to a different kind of whiskey drinker. And it's a good time for Bulleit to take the plunge.
Whiskey is still having a moment. A report from BevSpot shows whiskey is still the most-ordered spirit category, comprising 27 percent of orders in bars that use inventory software BevSpot, although it lost about 2 percent since the previous year.
"We are doing partnerships which bring new consumers into the brand," Kelly said. "It is encouraging people to explore and experiment with liquids, and it is creating new experiences in a perceivably traditional drinks industry. And I think that is why [whiskey] is having a moment."
For full interview click here.