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How to Join the Mile High Cocktail Club

Take your in-flight imbibing to a new altitude with Carry On Cocktail Kits

Say you’re running late for a flight and the day has felt like one of the longest, most soul-draining ordeals ever. You were really looking forward to winding down at the airport bar with a potent old fashioned, but time has run out. You’ll now have to settle for a glass of wine or whisky and soda – even if you’re flying first class – and that’s going to leave a bad taste in your mouth for so many reasons. Or you can do what some of the mixology professionals do under the radar: Break out baggies of ginger syrup, mint or simple syrup to whip up something fantastic.

But face it. If you don’t have the skills, matters can get messy. And your seatmate will hate you. But you’re likely to make a friend for life if you pack The Carry On Cocktail Kit in your bag (US$24 if you buy here]; for Canadians, C$26 at byobto.com). It’s exactly what it sounds like: a kit that comes with everything you need to concoct two perfectly crafted cocktails on your tray table, minus the spirits (because you can’t carry those on these days).

For example, to make a classic old fashioned, a carry-on tin contains a recipe card, aromatic bitters, a spoon/muddler tool and cane sugar. It even includes a linen coaster so you can turn up your tipple in style. Other choices include a champagne cocktail (with house-made elderflower syrup and a jigger), moscow mule (with ginger syrup) and gin and tonic (with tonic syrup).

Eric Prum and Josh Williams, founders of the Brooklyn, N.Y.-based W&P Design and creators of The Carry On Cocktail Kit, say they chose these particular classic cocktails because they complement spirits that are typically available on planes. If you're making an old fashioned, for example, use whatever whisky is available; for a moscow mule, ask for a vodka, and so on.

They developed the concept in 2014 because they’ve always felt that there is a lack of on-flight imbibing options. “After a conversation over drinks with the team at (cocktail-focused publication) Punch, we came up with the concept for the Carry On Cocktail Kit to solve that very problem,” Prum explains. “After talking about our own experiences with in-flight cocktails, we knew that we had to make this concept a reality. The partnership combines our understanding of food and beverage product design with Punch’spassion for all things drink-related.”

All of the cocktail kits are TSA-compliant, and Prum adds that overall customer response has been positive. “Consumers have sent us images of their Carry On Cocktail Kits from all around the world. We even had someone send us a photo of the kit in Antarctica,” he says with excitement.

He adds that the best decision was to include enough ingredients for two cocktails.

“Drinking tends to be a social event,” he says. “We love to share a cocktail with a friend, and if you’re travelling with a friend, partner or family member, why not take the social aspect of drinking with you? It (also) provides flexibility to have cocktails over a long flight or to enjoy it both on the way to your destination and on your way back home.”

Published Thursday, March 10th 2016

Header image credit: Courtesy W&P Design

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