Home Bartending: Finding Inspiration In Unexpected Places

If living through a pandemic has taught us anything, it’s how to combine creativity with resourcefulness. We’re taking fewer trips out and looking for ways to stretch both our time and budgets. If you’ve taken to home bartending, you might be surprised to find that quality local ingredients can be sourced from some unexpected places.

Be sure to check out our favorite cocktail kits from area bars & restaurants and distilleries! As always, Top Note Tonic reminds you to please drink responsibly.

Zero-Proof Cocktail Kit #1 from Siren Shrub Co.: Basil Siren Shrub, Tapped Hops-Infused Maple Syrup, Tapped Pure Maple Syrup, Top Note Classic Tonic, Top Note Club Soda No. 1 (Image credit: Siren Shrub Co.)


Siren Shrub Co., Amherst Junction, WI

Shrubs are one of our favorite ways to shake things up at home, lending their uniquely complex sweetness and acidity to both cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks alike. Bonus: make things easy with a Zero-Proof Cocktail kit featuring Siren Shrubs, Tapped Maple Syrup, and Top Note Tonic.

Just a few of the locally-made products ready to be delivered from Live Local Milwaukee to your doorstep. (Image credit: Live Local Milwaukee)


Live Local Milwaukee, Milwaukee & Ozaukee Counties

Because many of us have been shopping less and limiting our time spent in stores, it’s been crucial to find new and innovative ways to continue supporting our local economies. One of the most innovative ways we’ve seen here in Milwaukee also happens to be one of the most convenient! Live Local Milwaukee has partnered with a number of small businesses to deliver locally-made goods directly to your doorstep. Our favorites for cocktails include jams and jellies from Chef K. Clark, shrubs from Mad Maiden, and honey from DragonFly Farm.

LotFotL Community Farm harvest. (Image credit: LotFotL Community Farm)


Join a CSA

Food tastes best when it’s fresh, and it doesn’t get much fresher than from a CSA, which stands for Community-Supported Agriculture. From a few blueberries muddled into a G&T to a decked-out Bloody Mary, we love using fresh produce in our cocktails. It’s likely that there are a few CSA’s near you, so do your research to find one that best suits your needs and budget. If you live in Milwaukee, this article in Milwaukee Magazine is a good place to start.

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