I want to take a minute to talk about Whiskey Wednesday…
I recently took a vacation out to New York City, returned to Champaign, and promptly took off again for Aspen. Now that I’m back I’ve fallen in love all over again with Seven Saints and my little corner of America. I’m feeling sentimental and proud…so let the love-fest begin!
Last night’s Whiskey Wednesday served up a comforting reminder of what I admire about the Midwest at large and Seven Saints specifically. You think you love drinking half-off whiskey? Well, I’m here to tell you that I love selling it to you even more! Put yourself in my place for a second…
We packed the house with several hundred people over the course of the night this Wednesday. Dozens of these people are regular customers that I see each week, sharing what’s new, interesting, and fun in the word of whiskey. After venturing forth to far off lands, it was amazing to return home to all of you. Thanks for sticking by us and growing with us. Your enthusiasm bolsters my passion for craft spirits…to both our great benefit. You guys rock the house!
I also had a great time chatting up a table of seven new regulars we hooked in from their visit on Tuesday night. They returned for Whiskey Wednesday and were totally enamored with the selection of new whiskey delights that we rolled out on our Irish list. One guy had literally never tasted whiskey before in his life! I had the great honor of serving him up a Bushmills 21yr, and I watched as a contented smile drew across his face at his first sip. We talked a bit about what whiskey was and how it was made. Within three minutes his friends were passing their glasses around and he was sipping from each glass, asking me what made each whiskey so unique. Welcome to the club, brother! It’s exactly this type of interest and vivacity that endears our best customers to us and keeps our own enthusiasm burning bright.
I am especially proud of the Seven Saints staff members that make the whole show run. In many ways I am the man behind the curtain, but it’s really the servers, barbacks, and bartenders that have built up this merry old land of Oz! Just this week alone, we saw stellar performances from Anne (my bedrock, my foundation, my standard) who pulled a very arduous double shift to cover for Zach who was broken-hearted to have come down with the flu (thereby breaking a two-and-a-half-year streak of consecutive Whiskey Wednesday bartending shifts). We saw great rookie efforts from Adam and Marcus, and we benefited from swift and stellar barbacking from Tim. The lovely Suzy is back in WW action (much to everyone’s benefit), and JennyJenny pulled out one of her last WW shifts for a while. Anna could sell ice to Eskimos, but finds it easier and more profitable to sell whiskey to her packs of admirers. And Pretty Ricky…what can you say abut Pretty Ricky?!? Simply put, the guy’s a vision.
Regulars…rookies…staff members. Give yourselves a pat on the back for being charismatic, cool, and all-around awesome. Love-fest over…Andy out!