Distilled: Four Thieves Thirst Parlour pops up

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

A couple Sundays ago the second pop-up tasting from Four Thieves Thirst Parlour took place at Franklinton’s Land-Grant Brewing Co., and it represents a trend that could soon become popular among Columbus cocktail aficionados. Four Thieves was founded by local flavor experts Annie Williams and Luke Pierce with the goal of building outside-the-box recipes to keep customers immersed in the ever-evolving craft cocktail scene.

“The goal is to do these every two months or so, so we can develop something new and fresh each time to [find] new customers and keep returning [ones] engaged,” Williams said.

December’s event, Four Thieves Holiday Speakeasy, offered two Sunday evening tastings and was slightly different than the first, which took place at The Kitchen in German Village in October. Williams feels changing venues and structure will be the best approach, because it provides the opportunity to offer the freshest, most creative drinks.

The Holiday Speakeasy was surely innovative, in terms of both the recipes and flavors, but also in respect to its execution. The night offered five very different, very unique cocktails served to a large group. A short description of the cocktail — its ingredients, concept and some background on why it was chosen — was given before attendees took a sip, and Four Thieves’ favorite holiday edibles were provided as snacks. It had the atmosphere of a charmingly simple holiday party, but with some complex cocktails.

“We wanted to have holiday themes and flavors without doing the obvious — cranberry, cinnamon and those stereotypical, slightly-overdone flavors. That’s why we also used pear, Nocino (an Italian liqueur made from unripe green walnuts) and sweet potato. It definitely challenges us, and in the same way we want to challenge our customers to reevaluate those traditional flavors,” Williams said.

Four Thieves plans to hold events regularly, but not on a concrete schedule because the goal is to make each one an individual experience. The next tasting is planned for Valentine’s Day, where Williams hopes to pair with a local food truck and have a tailored brunch menu of food and cocktails.

“Don’t go to a [high-priced restaurant] for dinner. Do brunch and have the rest of the day to celebrate, as it were,” she said.