PourTaste’s Jon Yeager on Intoxicating Ingredients and His Cocktail App

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EcoSalon recently interviewed Jon Yeager from PourTaste. He discussed his company’s cocktail app, what makes a cocktail divine and shared a killer cocktail recipe.

Jon and Lindsey Yeager know drinks. The duo owns and operates PourTaste, a cocktail finding app and everything-cocktail company. EcoSalon got in touch with Jon and asked him how he and Lindsey created PourTaste, and asked them to share some cocktail secrets.

EcoSalon: When and how was PourTaste founded? And what sparked the idea?

Jon Yeager: We went full time in 2011. I worked as a bartender at Nashville’s Holland House in 2010. They were one of the first places to introduce (or reintroduce, I should say) craft cocktails to Nashville. I left after a year and people around town started recognizing me and asking for my advice on their events, menus, etc. It snowballed from there. And the idea started with a TV show, which we’re still working on

ES: Tell us about the PourTaste app.

JY: The app is America’s first craft cocktail house locator. It curates, city to city, and through all 50 states, the best cocktail joints. What we started seeing (and still experience) is that a lot of places will advertise “cocktails” and even worse, some places will boast about their “mixology program,” but at the end of the day, the drinks suck. What we suggest is that the places on our app are truly the best in their given category. While we were waiting on the TV show to happen the first time, we developed the app to forward our brand. The app got us a lot of street cred and here we are, three years later and people are interested in the TV pilot again!

ES: Why craft cocktails rather than other spirits?

JY: The craft of the cocktail is a culinary art. It’s the artistic process that all can get behind. When you start to peg yourself on specifics, you loose people quick. It would be like consulting a landscaper who only dealt with one kind of bush.

ES: What makes a cocktail great? Is it all about the ingredients, or the maker?

JY: More often than not, it’s the maker. There are many ingredients that are, on their own, amazing, that totally lend quality to the end libation. However, just like any other art form, a true cocktail great can wow you with anything they find. My training analogy is this: Imagine Steven Spielberg making a movie filmed with an iPad and me making one with the top of the line film camera used in Hollywood. We know whose would be better. It’s about the maker

ES: What are some of your favorite fresh ingredients to use?
JY: Wow, so hard. We love ginger and fresh ground cardamom. We love plums, figs and persimmon, as well.

ES: Could you share a simple, seasonal recipe with our readers?

Fox Hollow
1 1/2oz Armagnac
1 oz apple butter syrup
3/4oz lemon juice
1/2oz ginger syrup
2 dashes angostura bitters

Shake all ingredients with ice for 15 seconds. Strain over fresh ice and garnish with apple slice.

ES: Also: I see that writing is a big part of the business — why did you choose to also write about what you both do?

JY: The world is not short on people’s opinions for sure and we wanted to offer something useful. What we noticed, however, were recipes and methods that maybe could’ve been better, or possibly never tested at all, things that looked good on paper. We hope our writings might invigorate people and challenge the way we perceive cocktails as a whole. It’s an art form. There’s no “right” way, but just like music, paying attention to what our forefathers did can shape our approach.

ES: Feel free to also expand on the future plans for the business and what people can expect from PourTaste.

JY: We’ll be selling our tonic line soon, featuring seasonal flavor changes. Our TV show is in the hands of some influential people right now so we’re crossing our fingers for that. We are also the creators of Music City Spirits & Cocktail Festival in Nashville. {It’s our second year}. We have access to some wonderfully respected people in our field, which Nashville is getting really excited about. People can expect that to grow along with our new partnership with the World Food Championships.

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Image: PourTaste Facebook page

Abbie Stutzer

Writer, editor, and owner of Ginchy!, a freelance writing and editing company, and home funeral hub. Adores smart sex ed, sustainable ag, spooky history, women's health, feminism, horror, wine, and sci-fi.