ON TAP: An Odyssey through Cultural Mixology

Inside the entrance to Odyssey Gastropub, table lamps hang upside down on the ceiling. They illuminate the rough brick walls, where artwork is placed around a massive sign detailing the Front Range, and maps are scattered on tabletops in the seating area. To compliment the walls, the bar is made with knotty wood, both comforting and elegant. Once I took a seat at the bar, I mulled over the menu from their silver, open kitchen. ey have everything from classic bar munchies to modern cuisine, but that wasn’t the focus of this trip; the drink menu for Odyssey Gastropub is extensive, to say the least. They have over 50 beers to choose from, a well-balanced wine list, and taps that rotate consistently; but the best part is the seasonal cocktail menu.

Seth Michael Boyce, a bar manager of two years at Odyssey Gastropub, was quick to give me the lowdown on how things happen there. Every summer and winter, he makes a new menu that often is inspired by what he calls “cultural mixology,” or in other words, adapting old cocktail recipes to modern tastes and styles. Boyce said that most bars practice cultural mixology, whether they are aware of it or not, but his creations are different because he walks up and down the street to see what other people aren’t making to find those forgotten classics.

In April 2015, Boyce was on the cover of Bar Business Magazine, while he worked at Spiked Lounge at Harrah’s Resort in Southern California. ere, he worked as part of a team making complicated cocktails that could take 10 minutes to make, and that experience led him to be able to create his own drinks. After moving to Colorado Springs and working at Odyssey Gastropub, which has a high volume of visitors on the weekends, he said most of the cocktails on the menu are designed to be made quickly while retaining complex patterns. When new menus are released, Boyce even teaches classes in bartending.

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