Detroit's Savant partners with artist Tony Roko for stylish cocktails-to-go

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click to enlarge Detroit's Savant partners with artist Tony Roko for stylish cocktails-to-go
Courtesy of Savant

Last month, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a package of bills into law that allow for Michigan bars to sell cocktails-to-go. The legislation lets customers take drinks home or to special designated outdoor areas — and will help bars make up revenue lost from the coronavirus pandemic, which has forced many restaurants to close.

Savant Midtown has gotten in on the action, partnering with artist Tony Roko for stylish bottles for its to-go cocktails. Roko has previously worked on artwork for labels for Atwater Brewery.

"Basically what we have to do is come up with good creative ideas for what's happening out there," Savant mixologist Kevin Lewis tells MT. "It's a whole new business model that we have to come up with."

Savant bottled up some of its best-selling cocktails, which they plan on changing with trends, seasons, and customer response. One such drink is the Knickerbocker Off Cass, made with Valentine Vodka, raspberry, lemon, and mint.

The bottles come in two sizes. One is single-serving, to be served on ice for $12. Meanwhile, a larger bottle, which is a shaken cocktail, is enough for two drinks and will sell for $19.

Following the launch, Savant will begin offering an ice and garnish program to coordinate with their to-go cocktail offerings so customers can mix it up and make, say, ice spheres instead of regular ice cubes. In the coming months, they also plan on restarting their cocktail classes.

"Basically what we want to do is get our guests to take home product and if they have a party, they can be the craft cocktail bartender at home," Lewis says.

Roko says he was inspired by silent films for the artwork he created for the bottles. One features a character he calls "Giselle." Another features a sailor with a handlebar mustache.

The cocktails-to-go get a launch party at Savant on Friday. Roko is expected to be in attendance. Masks are required, and social distancing will be enforced.

You can read more on the Facebook event page.

The launch party is from 9-11 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 21 at Savant Midtown, 51 W. Forest Ave., Detroit; 313-285-9294; savantmidtown.com.

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About The Author

Lee DeVito

Leyland "Lee" DeVito grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, where he read Metro Times religiously due to teenaged-induced boredom. He became a contributing writer for Metro Times in 2009, and Editor in Chief in 2016. In addition to writing, he also supplies occasional illustrations. His writing has been published...
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