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Alembic Bar Cart 05.13.14
The design process started years ago. Around the same time I built the Magnolia beer cart. This was the final sketch I sent in for final approval. I was going for something in between a classic bar cart and apothecary-esque drawer organization. All to reflect Alembic's aesthetic.
I first started with a bunch of antique drawers and creates I collected from salvage yards across the bay area.
I thought I could stack them all together into an eclectic assortment of drawers and compartments. It ended up looking like a pile of crap.
So I started over from scratch. I needed a framework that would unify everything into one cohesive piece. I wanted something classy, historic looking, and durable. Something that would go right along with great feel that The Alembic has.
I scored some beautiful reclaimed oak from Heritage Salvage. I was told it came from a winery.
Dark stain to give a warm feel.
I constructed the base of the cart with pneumatic casters and plywood.
The braces not only gave more structure, but allowed me to attach the body over the bolts.
The main body was built with cedar.
I stained, sanded, painted, scraped, rubbed screws into, stained, sanded, spit on, bled on, sanded, and sealed the cedar in order to give it a distressed and warm look.
The floor of the cart went on first. Nail guns are awesome.
Bracing the shelves with this thin wood.
Stole these hinges off something antique.
Texture is key.
The handle for the cash drawer.
Had to drill a hole into the oak top in order to fit the light post.
Rubbing teak oil onto the wooden rails.
Installing the wooden rails with wood glue and a nail gun.
Brass details.
Cutting brass rails.
Had vinyl lettering made for the lamp.
Dropping the cart off at The Alembic yesterday. Imagine all the shelves filled with bottles of booze, herbs, fruits, shakers, jiggers, and all the other tools a bartender needs to make a world class cocktail.
Behind the glass is a special bottle of XXX reserve. Very potent stuff.
Compartments everywhere allow for full customization depending on what the bartender needs.
I built it, Alembic will make it, and you will drink it. After I successfully created a mobile draft beer cart for Magnolia Brewing Company last year I was recently commissioned to build a mobile cocktail cart for The Alembic. The cart will primarily be used at the Off The Grid event at Fort Mason every Friday night in San Francisco. The design is to resemble a classic bar cart with its transparency on the front shelving. The back half is to appeal more The Alembics apothecary style with drawers and compartments full of special herbs and garnishes. Its flat open surfaces will allow for customization of the cart depending on what the bartender needs for that nights cocktail list. Equipped with large pneumatic casters the cart will maneuver over any rough outdoor terrain with ease. And of course it has a ten foot high lamp to attract the attention of any thirsty patron no matter the thickness of the crowd. Be sure to check out the cart in action next Friday night at Off The Grid. I'm calling it "Mr. Charlie's Cocktail Cart"
Southwest, USA. 03.17.14 - 04.09.14
Skipping town. Somewhere in between Los Angeles and Joshua Tree. Iconic windmills.
Joshua Tree at night.
Little Vanagon entering the desert.
In case you get lost.
Typical camp set up.
Sedona, AZ. Red Rock State Park.
Acrosconti, AZ. A huge let down. The idea of a utopia is great. The architectural design of this place is great. But unfortunately this arcology fell short. They ran out of funding. No one really committed to the vision. And it has become a refuge for lazy hippies with unrealistic ideologies. I spent the night here and had the chance to eat dinner with the director. He reassured my suspicions and told me Acrosanti was doomed.
Got to watch the giants smoke the A's in a spring training game in Scottsdale, AZ. Purchasing a "Lawn" ticket allowed me to sprawl out, drink man cans, and yell typical baseball jargon.
Met up with some friends at a cowboy bar. This was seconds before Max Perry spit apple flavored liquor all over this half naked cowgirl.
Man vs nature.
Took a tour of Taliesin West just outside of Scottsdale, AZ. A beautiful architectural campus where Frank Llyod Wright taught, practiced, and lived.
Art spotted in Taiesin West.
Cake house.
Art in downtown Phoenix, AZ.
Long story short. Someone tried to steal the bike off my car while I was staying at a shady motel in Phoenix. I woke up in the middle of the night to the sound of the person cutting my lock. I proceeded to yell at him through the crack of the motel door while standing in my underwear. He fled the scene and my bike was safe.
Along the dusty Apache Trail. Highly recommended rural trail through Arizona.
Rocks and shrubs.
Rocks and sunset.
Prisoner made art.
The prison in Florence, AZ.
Biosphere 2 a few miles north of Tuscon, AZ. Originally built as a self-contained research facility in 1991. The experiment consisted of locking seven scientists inside the building for two years. Their objective was to complete studies of living structures in five artificially controlled biomes. They were only to survive on their own agriculture. The experiment mostly failed when the inhabitants nearly died of malnourishment. Now the facility operates for tourism and as a smaller study area for The University of Arizona.
There were no sightings of Pauly Shore or Stephen Baldwin.
The lung of Bioshpere 2.
Plane graveyard just outside of Tuscon, AZ.
Bisbee, AZ. An amazingly funky town. A great mix of hippies and cowboys. I fit right in.
The Old Bisbee Brewing Company. The brewery was across the street from the pub. Once a week they would run hoses outside and across the street in order to fill the grundies in the pub. I made friends with the owner and brewer. They liked me and even offered me a job. I'm still considering taking it.
My favorite part of the desert were scenes like this. Vast and open. The horizon line goes on forever.
White Sands National Park, NM.
The best experience on my trip. If not in my life. So surreal. So vast. The white sand looked like snow, but the heat said otherwise. I ran up and down dunes as if I could go forever. I spent hours wandering like I was waiting for the second coming. I'd go back in a heart beat.
Driving into camp somewhere in New Mexico.
Carlsbad Caverns. Lit up like Disneyland.
Camping near Texas.
This dude scraping graffitti off Prada, Marfa with acetone and a razor blade. Poor intern.
My buddy Tavahn showed me a great time drinking tequila and rocking out in his trailer while in Marfa, Texas.
Donald Judd at the Chinati Foundation.
Dan Flavin at the Chinatit Foundation.
Texas landscape.
Albuquerque sunset.
Road the iconic Slick Rock MTB trail.
Moab, Utah.
Dead tree in Arches National Park.
Looking Glass rock, Utah.
Desert sunset 25 miles south of Moab, Utah.
Busted a coal while solo camping outside of Moab.
Woke up under Looking Glass Rock covered in snow. A beautiul morning.
This heifer liked it too.
On some Wile E. Coyote shit.
Alleyway in Flagstaff, AZ.
The Hotel Monte Vista in Flagstaff, AZ.
Spent two hours with my feet dangling into the Grand Canyon.
Antelope Canyon, AZ.
That color though.
The beacon of light on my way home from Las Vegas, NV to Los Angelas, CA.
The desert has a way of consuming you with nothing. I experienced this as I road tripped through the Southwest United States a month ago. I had no real itinerary, just a list of some spots I thought sounded cool. My days were whimsical as I made plans up on the fly and had no idea where I was headed. The only thing that mattered to me was just getting out there into the vastness. Of course there were natural wonders and small cities I wanted to see, but for the most part I was just excited to be out in nature. I spent a lot of time in my car watching the scenery slowly change. And though confined in a little metal box, I found it to be quite meditative. At night I often camped under stars and away from civilizations. In the day I hiked across brush filled plains and up towering rock formations. The wonder of nature is truly amazing. Even seeing cactus after cactus, boulder after boulder, lizard after lizard, the romance never faded. My favorite part of being in the desert was staring into the horizon. A thin line that goes on forever and consumes you with its nothingness. It makes you feel insignificant yet embraced. Perhaps it's my similar sentiment towards the ocean. All in all it was a great experience for me and I feel to have learned quite a lot. And to imagine, it's right in the back yard of our beautiful country.