From its tasty tequila-infused desserts to its popular Muddle Your Mojito stations, when it comes to liquor sampling at events, the marketing pros at Patrón know the ropes. The brand samples its premium tequila in cocktails, but also surprises and delights attendees at food festivals with creative concoctions such as Silver Patrón infused popsicles and craft ice cream “sammiches” made with Patrón XO Café. The culinary creations tie in with the brand’s artisanal heritage. Its iconic bottles are handcrafted, hand-numbered and made from recycled glass and have been repurposed into all manner of works of art.
But sampling wine, spirits and liquors in any form is no easy feat. Concern about inadvertently serving to minors is just one consideration. “There are many, many restrictions. Every state has different ways to do it,” says Pam Dzierzanowski, vp-event marketing at Patrón Spirits.
Dzierzanowski has been at it so long she’s well aware of what can be done, and what can’t, in each state. Following are a few considerations before you pop the cork at your next event:
1. Public vs. Private: Dzierzanowski says Patrón does no public sampling. Everything takes place at private events. Food and wine festivals, which typically deal with many vendors and suppliers, have already worked through the legalities, so that is a big help.
2. State by State: Every state has its own rules and regulations, so seek legal advice before popping the top off any samples. In California, for example, a charity typically must hold the permit for the venue, and the brand makes a donation in order to be poured. Texas still has a few counties that are dry, meaning no liquor can be sold or sampled.
3. 21 and Up: Patrón of course only serves to adults over age 21, and 95 percent of the events it activates are for ages 21 and up. For larger events with a wider age group, it adheres to a strict wristband rule. No wristy, no whisky. Or in this case, no tequila.