6/07/2013 01:03:00 PM

A Day in the Life: Tipsy Texan and Mixologist David Alan

David Alan (left) and partner Joe Eifler
David Alan, a.k.a. the Tipsy Texan, says he never has a typical day. The mixologist and alcohol aficionado is responsible for some of the most creative cocktail menus in town (Drink.Well, Annie’s and more), and these days he runs from event to event, making recipes, mixing drinks, running his blog, teaching the art of bartending and helping Austin grow into a more robust drinking town. How does he do it? He claims he often needs a nap: “My job requires staying up late but getting up early, so napping is good.”

Alan was recently nominated for a CultureMap TasteMaker Award, and he’s on this month’s cover of L Style G Style. Plus he just released a book, Tipsy Texan: Spirits and Cocktails From the Lone Star State. The man even has a sandwich named after him at Franklin Barbecue (chopped brisket, sausage and coleslaw piled high on a buttered bun). Here’s what one of his days from earlier this week looked like.


8:30 – 9:30 I woke up in Houston after having worked the Anvil bar at Free Press Summer Fest the last couple days.

9:30 – 10:00 Stopped off at Blacksmith, my favorite coffee shop, to get some caffeine in my body and a little information in my brain from David Buehrer, a wizard with coffee. I traded him a copy of my book for some of his beans.

10:00 – 12:30 I got in the car and headed for Austin. I don’t mind driving because it means I can concentrate and actually get some meetings done. Had several calls about upcoming events we’re working at: Aspen Food & Wine, Tales of the Cocktail, Viva Big Bend Music Festival.

The United States Bartenders Guild chapter has a couple of very big events coming up - Texas Tiki Week in June, National Leadership Conference in August - so there is never a shortage of work that has to be done for the organization. I also work as a brand ambassador for Cooper Spirits (the creators of St. Germain), and we have a big new product launching this month, so I spend a lot of time on the phone.

Called my partner, Joe, to check on preparations for the evening’s event at Springdale Farm. 


12:30 – 4:00 When I got back to Austin, the USBG council joined me at the house and we headed out to Krause Springs to do a facility inspection for our upcoming “Luau at the Lagoon” event. It can be stressful running around so much and being on duty while other people recreate at a beautiful place like Krause Springs. But I have to remind myself that at least I get to “office” from fabulous locations and not in a cubicle. And the people in this industry are almost universally a fun bunch of folks.



4:00 – 5:30 Back in Austin we finished prepping for the drink service for the tomato dinner, a beautiful affair at Springdale Farm benefitting Austin Food For Life.

5:30 – 11:00 Loaded up the car and went to the dinner. The food was amazing: six tomato-inspired courses from Swift’s Attic’s Mat Clouser, Zack Northcutt and Callie Speer as well as Glass-2-Plate’s Matt Taylor and CafĂ© Josie’s Brandon Fuller. I was busy making cocktails and chatting, but I got to taste the oysters, quail, ravioli and more.

11:00 – 12:30 When my team finally got cleaned up and back home, we had a quick strategy meeting about the next day’s events and the rest of the week.

12:30 I nodded off almost immediately when I hit the sack and caught up on a week of sleep deprivation. It all started again this morning, and now I need to rush off to judge the Viva Sangrita! competition. Never a dull moment in the Texas beverage scene!

Need to get in touch with the Zagat blog in Austin? E-mail Megan Giller at megzagATX at gmail dot com.

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