Liquid Lab NYC is revolutionizing the traditional method of cocktail making by turning it into a 21st century brand of mixology.
As trailblazers in their field, Liquid Lab NYC has the distinction of being first to offer exciting new services of their own invention. Offering menus that include molecular mixology and artisanal/Prohibition-era cocktails along with health-inspired cocktail concepts allows Liquid Lab NYC to be a leader in innovation in the mixology field.
Liquid Lab NYC specializes in interactive events, installations, and mixology classes. Their corporate clients include Google, Ben Sherman, Facebook, Maybelline, Express, and Pandora. Liquid Lab NYC’s cofounders Parker Boase and Gregory Lucas’ latest creations can be found at The Attic Rooftop in Hell’s Kitchen. Here’s what the former models turned mixologists had to say about their creative company.
Tell us about Liquid Lab NYC.
Gregory: Liquid Lab New York City’s first full-service mixology company specializing in innovative cocktail catering for small and large-scale events, hands-on mixology classes and bar consultation (meaning we design the cocktail program for the bar, create custom recipes, train the staff, and do quality control checks).
Parker: We have been around for almost five years now and our mixology classes are definitely our most prominent service. They have become quite popular with corporate groups, birthdays, and bridal parties. We also get a lot of them out in the Hamptons in the summer for house parties. We keep it fun and also love ending with a group competition, where the guests get to be liquid chefs and create their own recipe.
What was the inspiration to start Liquid Lab NYC?
Parker: Greg and I have both been in the industry since we were teenagers. My mom is a chef, so I’ve been pretty active in the kitchen from a young age.
Gregory: I started working under the table at clubs and bars when I was 17, which was technically illegal, but learned quite a lot about cocktails and customer service.
Parker: We were both sick of working for other people, having long hours and late nights, and wanted to have a creative outlet to profile our cocktail concepts.
Gregory: We originally thought we would just design menus and recipes for bars but our list of services kept expanding in the first year and now we offer a slew of innovative cocktail services and have an incredibly talented staff of about 20 mixologists.
Talk to us about your health inspired cocktail concepts.
Gregory: Starting the company in Brooklyn we had access to some really fantastic farmers’ markets, allowing us to experiment with extremely fresh produce. We always strive to use healthy ingredients because it makes a huge difference in the final product’s taste. We always say, “When you see the gun, run” meaning when you see a bartender use the soda or a juice gun to add ingredients to your drink, run out of that bar as fast as possible.
Parker: Using fresh produce or purees, fresh-squeezed juices, and using sweeteners such as agave or stevia are great ways to ensure you can be happy about what you are drinking in regards to nutrition and calorie count. Some of our healthier, low-calorie cocktails were featured in a segment on Katie Couric’s talk show in 2014. We were given standard cocktails such as a Long Island Iced Tea and a Cosmopolitan and we worked with a nutritionist to create more health-conscious versions of those cocktails. It was an interesting challenge and we were quite happy with the result.
Talk to us about some of your past events.
Gregory: We’ve been really blessed to work with some of the most well-know companies in the world. Our most memorable and thematic events would be the following:
Maybelline’s 100th year anniversary party:
We had to use Maybelline Pink as the color inspiration, and we also had to include some fun ways to incorporate their events hashtag into the cocktails. We made a champagne cocktail and included an ice sphere with a pink Thai orchid which looked really chic and thematic. We were also able to incorporate the Maybelline hashtag in our twist on a classic Sazerac by ordering a customized branding machine and burning the hashtag into the orange peel garnishes.
We were challenged to create a customized Bloomberg-Inspired molecular cocktail bar. Some of the featured items included our molecular Negroni spheres, which were gelatinized and served in soup spoons, a cocktail in a bite. We also featured our Deconstructed Mai Tai, which was basically a rum with pineapple served with pipettes containing Orgeat, Aperol grenadine, and fresh lime. Guests squeezed the pipettes into the cocktail to reconstruct it.
What would you like our readers to know about Liquid Lab NYC?
Gregory: What I would like the readers to know about Liquid Lab NYC would be that we are constantly working on new and innovative cocktail recipes and techniques. We are also creating new and exciting services to offer clients. We have a lot in store for 2017, including a product line we have in the works and possible franchising to other parts of the country.
Parker: The most accessible way to experience our services would be to either set up a private group mixology class with us or attend one of our public classes in Manhattan available through our website, which are great for couples and smaller groups looking to learn more about the art of craft cocktails in a fun, interactive setting.
- 2 oz. Bourbon
- 1/2 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1/2 oz. Thyme Syrup*
- 1 oz. Spiced Apple Cider
- 3 dashes Angostura Bitters
Preparation: Add all ingredients to a Boston Shaker, fill with ice, and shake vigorously until frost starts to accumulate on the outside of the shaker. Strain over fresh ice into rocks glass and garnish with a hearty sprig of thyme and a robust mint leaf for aroma.
Steep 1/2 bushel of thyme (per quart) with Demerara sugar and water equal parts for 10-20 minutes and chill.
Cranberry Beet Martini
- 1 1/2 oz. Spiced Rum
- 1/2 oz. Suze
- 1/2 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1-2 bar spoons Sweetened Beet Puree*
- 1 oz. Cranberry Juice
Preparation: Shake all ingredients, double strain through a tea strainer into a Martini glass.
Boil 3 shaved beets in simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water) until soft, add 1 cup of simple syrup to food processor or high-speed blender (or mash heavily) until consistency is pureed.
Fig & Cider
- 1 bar spoon of Fig Preserves
- 1 1/2 oz. Spiced Rum
- 1/2 oz. Cinnamon-infused Simple Syrup
- 1/2 oz. Fresh Lime
- 1/2 oz. Pimm’s No.1
- Hard Apple Cider
Preparation: Add all ingredients to a Boston Shaker, fill with ice and shake vigorously until frost starts to accumulate on the outside of the shaker. Strain over fresh ice into rocks or Collins glass and top with a hearty splash of a dry hard apple cider. Garnish with dried figs and rosemary.
Parker’s southern family upbringing was enriched with an extensive culinary background. The passion for the service industry was instilled in Parker at a young age so the art of craft cocktails was an easy fit for him. After relocating to New York City and a brief stint in modeling, Parker focused all of his attention into the mixology world and the lush history of cocktail culture. He has since worked for several well-known Manhattan establishments and has developed a deep understanding of the hospitality industry.
Starting his bartending/mixology career as a teenager in Manhattan, Gregory has worked for some of the most prestigious bars, club, and hotels in the industry. SPA. Hiro, High Bar and opening PH-D at the Dream Downtown just to name a few. Gregory was fortunate enough to work with industry leaders and tastemakers throughout his cocktail career journey, not knowing that it would foreshadow what was to come next. Furthering his education and knowledge of the industry he studied Operation Business Management with a focus on food and beverage operations at NYU.